In keeping with his strategic objective for Decentralization, Commodore Dr. Raymond King conducted a five-day tour of the SOUTHERN COMMAND from Wednesday 18 August through Sunday 22 August 2021. Accompanying him on the trip were the Health and Safety Management Officer, Commander Granville Adderley, and the Command Warrant, Force Chief Petty Officer Ramone Storr, among others. They were welcomed by the Captain SOUTHERN COMMAND Captain Glenn McPhee, and the Master-At-Arms SOUTHERN COMMAND Force Chief Petty Officer Kevin Fountain.
During the busy trip the Commander Defence Force conducted a comprehensive inspection of all facilities onboard HMBS Gunn Point, Ragged Island and HMBS Matthew Town, Inagua. It was evident that despite COVID-19 challenges, personnel are maintaining the highest standard of naval discipline and bearing while ensuring the optimal readiness of assets and equipment to address existing and emerging threats.
The visit provided an opportunity for Commodore Dr. King to assess the morale and welfare as well as reinforce his Strategic Vision regarding decentralization. While addressing concerns he commended the officers and marines for their commitment and contributions towards the fulfilment of our mission and mandate.
At HMBS Gunn Point, Commodore Dr. King inspected the progress of infrastructural development of a Fuel Farm to increase fueling capacity for Defence Force vessels. Additionally, he presented plaques of appreciation to representatives of RanMar Construction Ltd and The Lost Key Lodge in recognition of their notable support for Defence Force operations on Ragged Island.
At HMBS Matthew Town, Commodore Dr. King toured the NEMA warehouse and assessed the Deployment’s Hurricane Preparedness Action Plan. He also inspected The Bahamas Maritime Surveillance System to review the multilayered security network of the long-range coastal radar. Additionally, he presented Marine Seaman Davaughn Mackey with a plaque as the Marine of the Quarter for SOUTHERN COMMAND. The Commodore was interviewed the local radio station Coast FM 106.1 Inagua, by Mr. George Harris, and used the opportunity to share his Strategic Vision for the Royal Bahamas Defence Force; specifically, Decentralization.
The Commander Defence Force, Captain SOUTHERN COMMAND and the HMBS Matthew Town Deployment Team worshipped at Matthew Town Seventh Day Adventist Church with Pastor Leonard Rahming during the Sabbath morning Service. Afterwards, the Commander Defence Force joined the Troops for dinner and reiterated the SOUTHERN COMMAND’S Mission: To ensure continuity of administration, operations, and logistical support for all RBDF missions originating, transiting through or around the southern Bahamas.
The HMBS Matthew Town Deployment Team is currently led by Lieutenant Darius Adams, Base First Lieutenant SOUTHERN COMMAND while the HMBS Gunn Point Deployment is currently led by Chief Petty Officer Terrance Arnette. The tour also included reconnaissance patrol flights across the southeastern Bahamas to maintain our vigilant posture to guard and protect the territorial integrity of the Commonwealth of The Bahamas.
The Royal Bahamas Defence Force remains committed to the pursuit of excellence as the Officers and Marines continue to Guard our Heritage.