COMFRC, FRCSW Name LS1 Sindy Johnson as 2018 Sailor of the Year

COMFRC and FRCSW 2018 Sailor of the Year Logistics Specialist 1st Class Sindy Johnson.

Commander, Fleet Readiness Centers (COMFRC) and Fleet Readiness Center Southwest (FRCSW) have selected Logistics Specialist 1st Class Sindy Johnson as their 2018 Sailor of the Year (SOY).

FRCSW named Johnson as its SOY in October, and COMFRC followed one month later.

“I was humbled by the selections,” she said. “I wanted to get that far and keep going. It almost seemed like a dream, like `I’m shooting for this, but I don’t know if I’m ever going to get there.’

“The leadership here has trusted me in letting me take over the assignments I wanted and volunteered for. I’m thankful for their trust and helping me achieve my goals. I didn’t achieve this alone though. It was a combination of the leadership, the people that work with me and the Sailors here at FRCSW,” she said.

But being recognized for her efforts and contributions are not really new to the 32-year-old petty officer.

While at her first command in 2005 aboard the submarine tender USS Emory S. Land (AS-39), Johnson was selected as the Bluejacket of the Year. Two years later Commander, Submarine Force, U.S. Pacific Fleet, chose her as its Junior Sailor of the Year.

In 2016, she reported to FRCSW where she serves as the acting chief petty officer of the command’s administration department. She is also the fleet training scheduler.

“We have two military and FRCSW Pt. Mugu administration personnel who I supervise, and I’m also in charge of all of the Sailors and Marines who come through the school house. So, at any given point, I can have 30 Sailors or Marines going through fleet training,” she said.

Prior to arriving here, Johnson worked at Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron (HSM) 73 as the material control leading petty officer.

Born in Bluff, Nicaragua, Johnson moved with her father to Bronx, N.Y., in December 2001 at the age of 15. Three years later she joined the Navy.

“Ever since I was little and living in Nicaragua, I wanted to join the Navy because I wanted to be part of the `big super power of the world,’” she said.  “And once in the States, in addition to joining the Navy, I wanted to be independent and find a better life for myself. That was the motivation to push me to join.”

In 2005, a year after joining the Navy, she became a naturalized citizen in Italy while assigned to USS Emory S. Land.

Johnson continues to pursue her naval career and said she is ultimately working toward advancement to master chief.

Her advice to younger Sailors who are interested in succeeding in the Navy focuses on continuity and perseverance.

“Don’t give up not matter how many times you fall personally or professionally,” she said. “Keep getting back up. And show up and do your best.”

Johnson is currently awaiting orders to her next command, and in the meantime, enjoys running and spending time with her family and ten-year-old daughter.







Waterjet Enhances FRCSW Manufacturing

The OMAX waterjet cutting tool is typically used by FRCSW in manufacturing skins, angles and ribs for the F/A-18, E-2/C-2 and H-60 airframes.

Fleet Readiness Center Southwest (FRCSW) artisans use a variety of tools and unique machinery in their daily work to provide the fleet with mission-ready aircraft.

One such machine, the “waterjet,” which is assigned under the industrial manufacturing program in Building 472, has the ability to cut aircraft wings in half.

With a 30-horsepower water pump and able to accommodate parts and materials up to 6 feet by 12 feet in its water tank, there’s not too much the manufacturing cutting tool can’t cut, curve, or shape.

An “abrasive” waterjet, the unit uses a combination of high pressure water and an 80-grit garnet abrasive that travels through a water line to cut material. Water enters a filtration system to a pump which boosts it up to 50,000 psi, and then sends it to a nozzle which has a mixing chamber where the abrasive is introduced.

The abrasive grit collects at the bottom of the water tank where it is captured and disposed of as hazardous material.

The 80-grit abrasive is about the size of beach sand and is typically used for making rough cuts. Finer grits of abrasive are used for making more precision cuts to create intricate parts.

An abrasive waterjet can cut through a variety of materials including stone, wood, titanium, and Teflon.

Unlike lasers, which FRCSW uses for cuts and patterns from minimally thick pieces of steel and aluminum, the waterjet does not use heat, sparing metals and other substances from the potential damage or intrinsic property changes associated with heat-cutting devices.

Operation of the machine begins with an AutoCAD (Computer Aided Design) that interprets the blueprints of the part to be manufactured or cut.

AutoCAD results are transferred to the waterjet’s computer terminal which estimates the time to complete the job, an estimate of the cost, and the amount of abrasive required based upon the material used and its thickness.

The FRCSW waterjet can handle thicknesses of up to 18 inches.

Manufactured by the OMAX Corp., FRCSW purchased the machine in mid-2009 to replace its aging unit.

The waterjet is routinely used to cut out F/A-18, E2/C2, and H-60 Seahawk helicopter parts including skins and ribs for the airframes.