S1 - ----
Keepng the JTFusafe
EGODe MG JU e e
e ,] .,l Lo iwo I-
Air Force Chief Master Sgt.
474th ECES Operations Chief
The greatest weapon in teaching may be your own on-the-job
behavior. Your troops are always watching, listening and observing
how you communicate, delegate and manage your time. Always
set standards and objectives for yourself that you would want your
personnel to adopt on and off duty.
We have a very high turnover ratio of young personnel and few
opportunities to develop their careers within our military. The
required scheduled meetings are periodic counseling and career
development tools, but the casual unscheduled conversations
may be the best opportunity to lead and mentor.
One common mistake a leader makes is dominating
a conversation. Young troops need and must have an
opportunity to communicate. Getting subordinates to
communicate won't do much good if you take over the
conversation and fail to listen. Learnto listen to the person's
use of words, and emotions behind the speech. Listen to the
actual question and let them finish their statements without
being interrupted; remember that good solutions come from
all ranks and everyone likes to contribute.
Personnel respond when you demonstrate genuine
concern for their well-being and success. Let them see you
go through and understand the same things they do and
their respect will follow.
We as teachers need to prepare our Troopers for future
positions and advancement. If we lead and mentor correctly,
our subordinates will be performing at the next higher pay
grade before being promoted.
We as supervisors must create the right climate when
leading and mentoring. Be patient and allocate some time for
them. If your time is too short, they will feel shortchanged;
too long, and their interest will be lost and the session will
lose direction. Never lose control of your emotions, take notes,
show interest and schedule follow-ups. Feedback will establish
A mentor is a role model. Your subordinates learn as much,
if not more, from observing you than from what you tell them.
If you are a mentor, remember that your actions make greater
impressions than what you say. Any inconsistencies between
your actions and your advice will send mixed signals and create
confusion and loss of respect.
Good leaders and mentors are constantly trying to improve
their methods of teaching. By making improvements, your actions
will speak louder than words. Set the example not only while on
duty but off duty as well.
In the summer of 1971, I joined the Air Force for service of
my country and to achieve and belong to something that I felt was
important. I think this is still very true for most of the men and women in
uniform today. There's something inside each of us that keeps us coming
back and doing what we have to do. Almost immediately after the terror
attacks on 9/11, we witnessed a universal American outpouring of pride
and patriotism from everyone regardless of race, color, ethnic background
or religion. That outpouring continues to manifest itself in our military
service today. Being a strong mentor will give our prot6g6's a head
start filling our shoes when we retire and are no longer in the
PAGE 2 I THE WIRE
TROOPER-TO-TROOPER I FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2009
Navy Petty Officer 3rd Class Jared Borg searches
for a piece of detainee mail in his mail bag, Sept
9. JTF Guantanamo photo by Army Sgt. Michael
FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2009 I MISSION
JTF Guantanamo Public Affairs
Detainee mail has a significant role
with ensuring the Joint Task Force
Guantanamo mission of safe, humane,
legal and transparent care and custody
"It is very important, because this
is [one of the few ways detainees] can
communicate with their family," said
Army Staff Sgt. Luis Ortiz-Medina,
the detainee mail non-commissioned
officer-in-charge. "It also gives them
something to look forward to."
The mail service receives mail,
processes it and delivers it to the
"They are happy when they see us.
When they get mail, people can tell
that they are happy," Ortiz-Medina
There are mail clerks that go into
the camps and deliver the mail to the
detainees once a week. Detainees also
have a weekly opportunity to send mail
"We provide them mail services
Monday through Thursday," Ortiz-
Medina said. "Along with delivering
mail to them, the clerks also pick up
any mail the detainee wishes to send
The majority of the mail that goes
into and out of the camps is from and
to family members.
"The detainees like getting mail
from their family," said Navy Petty
Officer 3rd Class Jared Borg, a
mail clerk. "It takes their mind off
of things like harassing guards,
because when they are writing a
letter, for 30 or 40 minutes, their
mind is elsewhere."
The detainee mail section also
provides the detainees with paper
and envelopes. They also give the
detainee Ramadan cards to send
Although allowing detainees to
communicate with their families is
important, the continued safety of
all JTF personnel and the detainees
must always be considered. For
this reason, all mail is checked for
The International Committee of
the Red Cross (ICRC) travels to the
JTF every three months, and this is
when a bulk of the mail that detainees
"The family member of the
detainee gives their letter to their
ICRC who then brings it here," Borg
explained. "We get it, process it and
return it to the ICRC representative.
The ICRC representative then meets
with detainees to ensure that they are
well, and that is when the detainee
receives the letter.
"They usually include photos of
family members;" Borg added.
Detainee mail tracks each piece of
mail from sender to destination.
"The biggest challenge with
our job is maintaining operational
security," Borg concluded. 0
THE WIRE I PAGE 3
Army Staff Sgt.
JTF Guantanamo Public Affairs
Joint Task Force Guantanamo's first
line of defense for external security
are the Troopers of the 480t Military
Police Company from the Puerto Rico
Army National Guard. The Troopers are
responsible for the external security of the
entire task force.
The 480th provides guards to control
access points on the roads leading into
Camp America, overwatch security of the
camps and the surrounding areas of Naval
Station Guantanamo Bay to include land,
water and sea, perimeter security of the
camps from security towers located around
detainee facilities, and entry and exit
control for camp access points.
The Troopers work day and night shifts
to make sure security is tight at all times
and at all places. Every guard is trained
and authorized to use appropriate force to
maintain security in accordance with strict
rules of engagement and standard operating
The vehicle control points into Camp
America provide an initial layer of security
for the JTF. Vehicles are checked for proper
identification and are visually searched for
any items that may cause a danger to the
personnel at the JTF.
"We are looking for the safety and
security of everyone at the JTF the
civilians, Troopers and detainees security
is our primary concern," said Sgt. Ada
Vasquez with the 480t.
At the camp entrances, the Troopers
conduct checks for any kind of items
unauthorized in the camps. They also
control vehicle and personnel access into the
camps, checking to make sure every person
who enters the facilities is authorized to do
so and has an updated security badge. They
may also have to call for an escort for any
persons who need to enter the camps but
require an escort.
"What we do is very important," said
Spc. Mayra Perez, who works at the access
point to one of the camps. "We are the
ones who decide who comes in and who
From the vantage point of the camps'
observation towers, the 480th MPs maintain
a 360-degree watch. From an elevated
position, the Troopers have a clear view
over the camps and the surrounding areas.
"We see things other people may not
see," said Spc. Evelyn Rivera, who provides
watch in one of the camp towers. "If an
PAGE 4 I THE WIRE
Army Sgt. Juan Gonzalez with the 480th Military Police Company, checks a bus
as it drives through a vehicle check point outside Camp America, Sept. 9. JTF
Guantanamo photo by Army Staff Sgt. Blair Heusdens
incident includes more than one element or
more than one area, it is easy for us to see
and communicate or call for help."
Quick reaction forces and roving patrols
provide additional layers of security for
the task force. Teams remain ready at all
times to respond to incidents inside and
outside the camps at a moment's notice.
When not responding, the teams conduct
daily training on the standard operating
procedures of each potential situation they
Roving patrols provide support to all
of the camps and external security sites.
They are available to check out unusual
or suspicious activity spotted at any area
around Camp America and can respond
quickly to requests from all security
The 480t's mission comprises just a
piece of the security measures in place at
Joint Task Force Guantanamo to keep the
Troopers and detainees here safe. Working
MISSION I FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2009
Making it happen be
JTF Guantanamo Public Affairs
Making sure that the logistical needs of Joint Task Force Guantanamo
are taken care of can be a large order to fill. Helping fulfill those needs falls
squarely on the shoulders of the Puerto Rico Army National Guard's 191st
Regional Support Group.
The unit has been in command of the Joint Task Force Guantanamo
Headquarters and Headquarters Company since its arrival in December
2008. Their mission while deployed is expansive, ranging from Trooper
safety to housing issues. In addition to its far-reaching responsibilities, the
group has also had to learn to work with and rely on one another, since the
unit was put together shortly before deploying.
"It was challenging. I didn't get to know everyone until we got here,"
said HHC commander Army Capt. Manuel Rodriguez.
To add to the stress of working with a new set of personnel while
deployed, some have had to adjust to working in a joint atmosphere.
"I've never been in a joint atmosphere before," said Rodriguez. "It's
one of the better experiences of my career."
Once the unit members arrived and were settled into their new roles
at the JTF, they began to undertake the daily challenges that confronted
One of the bigger tasks the group handles is housing arrangements for
JTF personnel. Army Master Sgt. Michael Alicea is the facilities manager
at the HHC and is in charge of assigning personnel as they arrive at the
joint task force.
"I assign housing to JTF personnel as they are scheduled to arrive at
Guantanamo. I am also involved when we have units depart the island,"
Of course, the HHC provides more than just a place for you to lay your
head. They also are tasked with another important function here at the
"The safe ride program offers a ride home to Troopers who are without
transportation on weekend evenings. This program is managed by the HHC
first sergeant," Army Sgt. 1Pt Class Guillermo Santiago, Camp America
For the members of the 191st RSG, their deployment also meant they
would be working in an environment completely foreign to most of them.
They have had to endure a crash course into the world of joint operations,
forcing the Troopers to develop a quick understanding of the other branches
of the military and how those personnel conduct business.
"There have been a few lessons we have learned since arriving. Some
are related to being on an active duty status for the first time, along with
FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2009 I MISSION
the way we conduct business in a joint environment," said
However, Santiago is also quick to compliment
his Troopers and how they have dealt with these
"The commitment and performance of all the Troopers
assigned to the 191st RSG while deployed has placed this
unit in a historical place in the proud and rich heritage of
the Puerto Rico National Guard," said Santiago.
So the next time you call for a courtesy ride home or
get new a refrigerator in your room, remember there are
numerous personnel behind the scenes making things
happen, one Trooper at a time. 0
(Above) Troopers from
the 191st Regional
Support Group of the
Puerto Rico Army
National Guard unveil
their sign at Camp
America, Aug. 20.
(Left) Troopers from
the Puerto Rico Army
National Guard are
deployed to Naval
Station Guantanamo Bay
in support of Joint Task
mission to provide safe,
humane, legal and
transparent care and
custody of detainees. -
JTF Guantanamo photo
by Army Sgt. Andrew
THE WIRE I PAGE 5
Softball tournament provides night of fun
April D. de Armas
JTF Guantanamo Public Affairs
Holidays are always a time for people
to celebrate and have fun. For Troopers
and residents stationed at Naval Station
Guantanamo Bay, the celebration of the
Labor Day holiday began with an all-night
softball tournament at the Cooper Sports
On Friday, Sept. 4, seven teams went
head-to-head during the all-night event,
playing several games starting at 7 p.m.
and lasting throughout the night.
Navy Chief Petty Officer Andre
Delarosa with the commissions support
group joined his team, the Cougar Snacks,
for their first time playing as a team.
"This was our first time to play together
as a team," Delarosa said. "I have been
here for just a few months and was excited
to get back on the field."
For some of the players, it was the
first time they played for a team or in a
Air Force Master Sgt. Gregory Gordon
with the 474th Expeditionary Civil
Engineering Squadron and his team, the
GTMO Hawgs, were also taking the field
in the tournament.
"This is the first time I have ever played
in a league," Gordon said. "It was actually
cool and the atmosphere was good among
There was a lot of enthusiasm among
the players of every team as they shouted
encouragements during each game they
Army Staff Sgt. Stephen Dix with the
193"r Military Police Company plays for
the GTMO Crush.
"It was very exciting to get back on the
field," Dix said. "We work hard during
our practices and I feel we have gotten
As each game was played, teams were
eliminated until the top two teams were left
to face off for the win.
Finally, at 4:30 a.m., the GTMO Crush
took the win against the GTMO Latinos,
with a final score of 16 to 7.
"We were all tired after being out there
all night," Dix said. "But I felt really good
about the win and I know our whole team
LOCAL SPORTS I FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2009
PAGE 6 1 THE WIRE
JTF Guantantanamo Public Affairs
The parade of failed attempts at high
school humor that exits yearly and often
prematurely from production studios
adds yet another menial, carbon copy to
their ever-expanding scrap heap with "I
Love You Beth Cooper."
Following its equally perverted, yet
dull, predecessors, this latest absurdity of
the pre-pubescent, dork vs. jock, first time
intimate experience genre, was crafted to
extract one fundamental reaction from its
audience. That reaction is the cringe. It's
an impulse; a knee-jerk reaction that when
presented with an extremely awkward or
painfully humiliating moment, triggers the
brain cells to twinge the cheek muscles,
clench the teeth and contract the shoulder
muscles into a question mark that clearly
demands, "Oh my gosh, did that just
Unfortunately, the cringe factor is the
only redeeming quality that "I Love You
Beth Cooper" has to offer. It is directed
by Chris Columbus, whose prior failed
attempt at an adolescent action-comedy
was the 1987 disaster, "Adventures in
Babysitting." In his most recent disaster, he
merely updates the wardrobes, decreases
the plausibility, and increases the amount
of sexual content.
While the majority of the film seems
to drag on and on, the ultimate awkward
- -'y ""' s-- '' _
FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2009 I MOVIE RECON
moment arises even before the open
credits subside, as valedictorian and
socially inept dweeb Denis Cooverman
(Paul Rust), voices his long-silenced love
and affection for the tri-fecta: gorgeous,
popular, head-cheerleader Beth Cooper
("Heroes'" Hayden Panettiere) at their high
school graduation. A string of word vomit
subsequently follows as Denis transforms
his declaration of love into a sarcasm-soaked
rant against other high school archetypes,
as well as a particularly painful declaration
of his movie-quoting best friend's not-so-
secret yet unspoken homosexuality.
Following the ceremony, he suffers
mercilessly atthe hands ofBeth's boyfriend,
a school faculty member, and his peers, but
inthe face of all the disparaging humiliation,
finishes off his ballsy high by inviting
Beth and her debutant friends to a party.
To the protagonist's and the audience's
surprise, she shows up, strips off all of his
preconceived notions of the perfect woman
and replaces it with a fiery, booze-soaked,
man-eater with a dirty mouth and a passion
for breaking the law.
With the little lady at his side, Denis
enjoys the night of his life, enduring a wet
towel sword fight, several hit and runs, and
an assortment of awkward and sexually
explicit moments. Still, the scenes drag
slowly on, peppered with uneven flash
backs and underdeveloped characters. In
the end, this familiar film appears more
as a lackluster "Superbad" minus the
THE WIRE I PAGE 7
Troopers from Joint Task Force Guantanamo participated in a hot dog eating contest
at Ferry Landing, Sept. 7.
After a preliminary contest at the Navy Exchange, Aug. 31, Army Staff Sgt. Jim
Wagner, Navy Chief Petty Officer Virginia Fike and Army Sgt. Michael Baltz advanced
to the final competition.
The GTMO finalists were paired with professionals from the International Federation
of Competitive Eaters for the final competition. "Crazy Legs" Conti, Pete "Pretty Boy"
Daveokos and Tim "Eater X" Janus came to Naval Station Guantanamo Bay for the
In the end, the team of Tim "Eater X" Janus and Army Staff Sgt. Jim Wagner
was victorious, wolfing down 37 hot dogs between the two in the 10-minute time
* 9.11-mile run to be held
Sept. 13 in remembrance
of Sept. 11 victims
Navy Petty Officer 1st Class
JTF Guantanamo Public Affairs
Joint Task Force Guantanamo
Troopers at Naval Station Guantanamo
Bay will show support and remembrance
of the Sept. 11 tragedy by hosting
the second annual Freedom Run in
partnership with the Chicago-based non-
profit organization We Do Care.
"This run is unique because it
reminds the Troopers at GTMO why
their mission here is so critical," said
Maj. Diana Haynie, the deputy director
of public affairs for the JTF.
Troopers will gather at Windmill
Beach Sunday, Sept. 13, to participate in
the 9.11-mile Freedom Run sponsored
by the JTF Guantanamo public affairs
team; Morale, Welfare and Recreation;
and We Do Care.
The Guantanamo Freedom Run
is modeled after the Freedom Run
founded by Dirk Beveridge, president and
founder of the We Do Care organization,
whose mission is to provide the public
opportunities to support and thank active-
duty military personnel, veterans and their
Beveridge visited Guantanamo Bay
in April 2008 for the 75* Joint Civilian
Orientation Conference (JCOC). While
here, Beveridge approached then JTF
Deputy Commander Army Brig. Gen.
Gregory Zanetti, to consider hosting the
In the 2008 Freedom Run at Naval
Station Guantanamo Bay, 200 participants
ran simultaneously with runners in
Barrington, Ill. This year, Guantanamo
PAGE 10 THE WIRE
and Barrington runners will welcome two
additional participation sites, Eskan Village,
Saudi Arabia, and Forward Operating Base
"The significance of having the two
additional sites is to raise awareness and
support in as many places as possible," said
The run begins just before sunrise,
starting and ending at Windmill Beach.
The first 250 participants to cross the finish
line will be presented with a Freedom Run
The event will wrap up with a beach
party at Windmill Beach, hosted by the JTF
public affairs office.
"I encourage everyone to come and
support the 9.11 run," said Haynie. "Not
only does participating motivate other
runners and volunteers, it also shows
gratitude for every service member
supporting our freedoms."
The We Do Care organization is a non-
profit, non-political, grassroots organization
founded by Barrington, Ill., area residents
committed to finding appropriate ways of
showing appreciation and support to those
who serve. For more information, visit the
Web site, www.we-do-care.org.
All Troopers and Naval Station
Guantanamo Bay residents are encouraged
to line Kittery Beach Road, beginning
at 6:45 a.m., to show their support and
motivate all participants. 0
FORMAT FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2009
( Sept. 11:
Navy Petty Officer 2nd Class
JTF Guantanamo Public Affairs
Hispanic Heritage was first officially recognized in the United
States in 1968, when President Lyndon B. Johnson declared a
week in mid-September as National Hispanic Heritage Week. It
wasn't until 1988 that President Ronald Reagan extended National
Hispanic Heritage week to a month-long observance.
The term Hispanic or Latino as
defined by the U.S. Census Bureau,
refers to Spanish-speaking people in
the U.S. of Spanish Hispanic Latino
origin. According to the Bureau,
more than 36 million people in the
U.S. identify themselves as Hispanic
The Hispanic population
at Naval Station Guantanamo
Bay continues to grow each
day. "Currently there are [more
than 400] Hispanics serving on
active duty [at Joint Task Force
Guantanamo]," said Army Master r
Sgt. Michael Alicea, with JTF
housing. There are many other
Hispanics stationed at Naval
Station Guantanamo Bay with the Navy, Marine Corps and
Coast Guard. Others still, work as civilian contractors in various
capacities at the naval station.
"It's nice to know that [there are many Hispanics] on this
island however, being Hispanic and in the military is no different
for me than it is for anyone else," said Army Spc. Damaris
Quintana, a human resource specialist attached to Headquarters
and Headquarters Company with the Puerto Rico National Guard.
"When I put on my uniform, I report into work and conduct
FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2009 | NEWS & INFORMATION
business just like everyone else."
Tastes of Hispanic culture can be found all around
Guantanamo, from the salsa, meringue and bachada dancing to
the frequent concerts by GTMO's own "Puerto Rican Fever," a
steel drum band formed by members of the Puerto Rico National
This year, the naval station's Hispanic American Heritage
Association is celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month by hosting
a dinner dance Saturday, Sept. 19, starting at 6:00 p.m. The
association has operated at Naval
Station Guantanamo Bay for several
years and is committed to providing
a sense of Hispanic culture to the
"We wanted to hold the event
so that the GTMO Community
can come out and celebrate our
Hispanic Heritage," said Doraima
Alvarez, an independent contractor
who works on base.
A lot of work went into
selecting a speaker, choosing the
right decorations and securing
performers for the event. The
menu for the dinner will consist of
authentic Hispanic appetizers such
as beef pastelitos, spiced potato
cakes, and fresh corn fritters. The main course will include roast
pork, arroz con gandules (rice w/pigeon peas), and cassava (yucca).
The dessert will be tres leches (custard). The roast pork and rice
are all prepared with a Latin flare.
"We want to invite everyone to join us for some pure
excitement and new cultural elements," said Navy Petty Officer
2nd Class Jeffrey Ronchaquira with naval station port services.
The HAHA is always open to everyone in the Guantanamo
THE WIRE I PAGE 11
Rican Fever," a~ III I r
steel drum band pu
.480th MPs have
yes external security
We have a lot of [Troopers]
here and we have to watch
each other's backs.
Army Pfc. Luis Rodriguez
480MP from 4
together with various other services and
elements, the Troopers feel their work is an
important part of the JTF mission.
"We have a lot of [Troopers] here and
we have to watch each other's backs," said
Army Pfc. Luis Rodriguez. "You never
know what could happen if we weren't
paying attention." 0
Holy mackerel, sushi!
Chef David Bearl visited Naval Station
Guantanamo Bay for a local fish and sushi
demonstration at Gold Hill Galley, Sept.
4. Bearl is the director of First Coast
Technical College's School of Culinary Arts
in Jacksonville, Fla. In addition to visiting
the naval station, Bearl has also been to the
White House to cook for President Barack
Obama. JTF Guantanamo photos by Army
Sgt. Andrew Hillegass
NEWS & INFORMATION I FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2009
PAGE 12 1 THE WIRE
Guantanamo Bay gets a taste of jazz
Bobby Park's band members jam out during the Labor Day celebration at Ferry Landing, Sept. 7. Park's band was
part of the seventh annual Jazz Festival at Naval Station Guantanamo Bay. The jazz festival coincided with a car
show, craft fair and hot dog eating contest, all sponsored by Morale, Welfare and Recreation. JTF Guantanamo
photo by Army Sgt. Michael Baltz
FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2009 I VOICE OF THE FORCE
THE WIRE I PAGE 13
Air Force Lt. Col.
JTF Guantanamo command chaplain
The 9.11 run this Sunday has certainly
generated a lot of interest and I have been
intrigued conversing with those who intend
to enter the race. Each one I have listened to
expressed a keen desire to know the exact
route. That way they can run the trail on their
own to get a feel for the track and prepare
psychologically to endure the challenge.
Needless to say, every runner will
have a strategy; some have talked about
hydration, while others have mentioned
loading up on carbohydrates. I am willing
to go on the record to say none of the tactics
will involve carrying extra weight or gear.
Some will carry water bottles and others
will wear hydration systems, yet I do not
Sunday: 9 a.m.
Sunday: 11 a.m.
expect to see anyone wearing anything but
This reminds me of our spiritual race
and the sage advice we find in Hebrews
12:1-16. This inspired document discusses
the race the believer has entered and, in it,
the author says "let us also lay aside every
encumbrance and the sin which so easily
entangles us, and let us run with endurance
the race that is set before us, fixing our eyes
on Jesus, the author and perfector of faith."
This coaching is essential for us to heed if
we want to complete the race in the allotted
The first advice is to lay aside every
encumbrance. Makes sense, doesn't it?
Like our 9.11 runners; who would add
nonessential items to their race gear?
The inference regarding encumbrances is
probably referring to the cares of the world,
l, u I ii i1 Ii
6:30 a.m. Mass
Spanish Catholic Mass
Sunday: 5 p.m.
at NAVSTA Chapel
which implies a trust in one's own wisdom,
rather than the wisdom of God.
The second bit of advice is to lay aside
the sin which so easily entangles, which
from the context implies a lack of faith in
God's capabilities to assist us when and
Third, we are told to run with endurance
- which means to not give up even if we
have to walk or crawl across the finish line.
Finally, we are told to fix our eyes on the
One who will complete our faith. Focusing
on the One who completes our faith will
keep us determined when the run gets
tough; especially since the One we watch
has already run the race with success.
I close with these words from 2
Thessalonians 3:16, "May the Lord of
peace Himself continually grant you peace
in every circumstance." 0
Sunday: 6 p.m.
Wednesday: 7 p.m.
PAGE 14 I THE WIRE LIFE & SPIRIT I FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2009
PAGE 14 1 THE WIRE
LIFE & SPIRIT I FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2009
JTF Guantanamo Public Affairs
We all have our tasks as a service member. Most
Troopers have additional duties. For some it is being
the physical fitness coordinator and for others it is
carrying the company guidon.
Just as people are called for additional military
duties, sometimes, they feel a calling elsewhere.
Army Sgt. Ruben Subia feels a spiritual calling.
Subia, who recently departed Naval Station
Guantanamo Bay after a year-long deployment with
the 525t Military Police Battalion felt his own calling
to provide spiritual support to his fellow Troopers.
"I am just a vessel for His voice," Subia said.
Subia hosted a Bible study for the past several
months, which inspired many Troopers. On Aug. 27,
Subia and four others were baptized at one of the
naval station's beaches.
He gives all of the credit for creating a Bible based
spritual program to his own belief and faith in his
Subia has been baptized before, but one of his
fellow Troopers, who was inspired by the study
program, wanted to get baptized with others of the
same faith and spiritual calling.
"Getting baptized is avery important step, because
in scripture, it is one of the sacraments that Jesus says
to continue even after he was gone," said Army Capt.
Eric Bey, the 525t MP Battalion chaplain.
Subia is delighted with where his religious calling
had led him.
"When I got [to Guantanamo Bay], I was a little
bitter about being here a second time, but I have met
a lot of really good brothers," Subia said. "It is like
the Lord brought all of us together, so we started the
Soldiers'bible study. A fellowship is extremely important, because
you can only do so much by yourself."
Subia's dedication to his spirituality, the Bible and selfless
service has not gone unnoticed.
"I am just one chaplain for [more than 400 Troopers], so it is
awesome that they had a bible study," Bey said. "[Subia] called
people together who are like-minded and touched quite a few
people. It is an important part in ministry for people to fellowship
and to study the Lord's word together."
Subia understands why his bible study was a success.
"People do not like talking to people that don't understand them,
especially when talking about the Lord," Subia explained. "So you
start talking to them, building a relationship with them, and help
them get to the root of their problems. And you just say, 'Hey, if
you want to come and talk, we have this Soldiers bible study, so if
you are interested, you can come'. It is at your own leisure there
is no time frame or hours to log."
Several Troopers did show up, Subia says that roughly 15
people showed up every week.
"We had food and everything and invited all of our brothers and
sisters. We did our best to keep it going," he said.
Subia has learned some important things that have helped him
cope with the stress of deployment, and life in general, that he
FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2009 I 15 MINUTES OF FAME
shares with fellow Troopers who seek his guidance.
"Jesus didn't come to save the righteous; he came to save the sinners,"
Subia explained. "The sinners are the ones who need to be saved. I hear
people saying 'I would really like to go to church, but I am cheating on
my spouse,' or 'I am too drunk to go.' Satan likes to back you up into a
comer and make you think you are unworthy of God's love."
Subia understands about being backed into a comer, because he has
gone through some hard times as well.
"Sometimes I catch myself leaning on my own understanding and
not His. Then God sends someone to bring me back to His word."
"There are two commandments the Lord wants us to follow," Subia
clarified. "If you fulfill these two commandments, you will obey every
law. One is to love your God with all your heart and soul. The other is
to love your neighbor as you love yourself. Because in the end, if you
love your neighbor and God you won't commit adultery, murder, hate
or anything like that. All you have to do is these two things and the
world would be a better place."
After he departs the Army, Subia plans on going to seminary school
to earn a masters in theology.
"I know the Lord is leading me down the right path," Subia faithfully
Subia hopes that he can pass the torch and people can continue to
fellowship at GTMO after he departs. O
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