Category Archives: BnCO Remarks

Fall 2014 Semester, BNCO Final Remarks


In our outdoor lab at the beginning of the semester, I outlined four aspects of my vision for the semester. These were mentorship, communication, community knowledge, and professional development. You’ve indicated that the formal program has been effective, but I can’t stress the importance of continuing to seek mentors in whatever area of life you find yourselves. Indeed, the seniors have already taken the next step toward their futures, but for the rest of you, make sure you are informed and prepared to make this life-changing decision when the time comes. Lastly, continue to maintain yourselves as professionals in every sense of the word.

Moving away from the formal side of things, I want to once again welcome and congratulate the 4/C on their first semester of NROTC. This is a huge commitment, and I have seen you all grow tremendously since you first walked through the hallways of Newport. Some of you have faced their fair share of difficulties already, but this is just the beginning. Keep on pushing, and do whatever it takes for you to excel. It will all pay off in the long run.

To the sophomores and juniors: you have either 1.5 – 2.5 years of ROTC and college experience under your belt. You’re growing ever closer to the fleet, and you will soon be facing leadership challenges in ROTC, if you haven’t already. These are all experiences that you’ll take with you to the fleet, and you will definitely learn from them and make mistakes along the way.

My fellow seniors: we have grown together for the past seven semesters, and I remember our first NS classes together with LT Sieg. I have never been so close with a group of friends as I am now with you. You will all make fine officers, and it has been my pleasure to lead and serve you. Thank you for all the advice you have given me along the way, as I will never forget out time together. Let’s make our last semester our best one yet.

Last, but definitely not least, I want to give special recognition to everyone on Battalion Staff. The job you all do is thankless, and you have seen that first hand this semester. But now, I want to thank each one of you for all of the work that you’ve put forth. It is because of you that the MIDN Battalion has functioned as well as it has, and it is no small task to do what you do on top of everything else that you have accomplished in school this semester. Especially to my XO, Bridget McCoy, I know every Battalion Commander says this, but I truly mean it: without you, none of this would have been possible this semester. You made my job infinitely easier, and I know you’ll end up doing great things wherever you go.

I wish MIDN Forsey, the SP15 Battalion Commander, all the best, and congratulate him once again on his achievement. Before I do that, I want to thank you all again for your hard work and dedication this semester. Good luck on finals and enjoy winter break!


A.F. Hayden


BnCO’s Opening Remarks


Firstly, I would like to welcome back those of us that are returning, and hope this will be another extraordinary semester for you. To the incoming 4/c, I would like to officially welcome you to the Boston NROTC Battalion.

alex headMy name is Alexander Hayden, and I am the Midshipman Battalion Commander for the upcoming semester. As a senior at Boston College, I am currently double majoring in Political Science and Islamic Civilization and Societies.

Naval ROTC is intended to be a training ground to develop midshipmen for their futures as officers in the U.S. Navy and U.S. Marine Corps.  The vision that I have for NROTC this semester comprehensively echoes that. Every action taken by the midshipmen staff – whether within the Battalion Staff, or at the platoon and squad levels – should reflect that, as well. Training will focus on the development of midshipmen as professionals in their journey to become Navy and Marine Corps officers. Being an officer entails being a professional, in every sense of the word. Whether that is though academic excellence, moral certitude, physical prowess, or social aptitude, being a well-rounded professional is something that I expect from each and every one of you.

Additionally, I would like to increase the focus that is given to imparting knowledge about the service communities. Excitingly, each of our respective commissioning dates grows ever closer. Yet, one of the most difficult choices each of us will face is determining our preferences on which community we seek to enter. Because this is the case, I will make it my priority to ensure that every MIDN in the Battalion receives increased, accurate information about each of the service communities so that they may make a more informed decision when the time comes. No matter if your future takes you on the seas, diving deep below them, flying high above them, or leading a group of Marines, you will understand more about what each community has to offer to you, and whether you are a good fit for it.

In my time, I have seen three classes receive their commissions and graduate. Each class has inspired and set an example for those that followed in their footsteps, and this year is no different. The role that upperclassmen play as mentors – whether formal or informal – is of utmost importance.  When welcoming the 4/c, set a superb example for them; encourage their successes, and constructively correct their shortcomings. In a few years, they will be in your shoes and performing the same tasks that you are now. But don’t forget that even as a 1/c, you can be a mentee; learn from your peers, and the active duty staff as well. One day, you will be in your shoes and performing the same tasks that they are now.

I wish you all the best this semester, and will be here to serve you in every capacity. Let’s work together to make this semester the best one yet.

Very respectfully,

Alexander F. Hayden

Remarks from the Midshipman BnCO

DSC_4735My name is Michael Simpson and I am the Midshipman Battalion Commanding Officer for Spring 2014. I am a senior at Boston University majoring in International Relations, and I will commission as a Marine Corps Officer in May. It is an honor to work alongside and for the midshipmen of the Boston Naval ROTC as we prepare for our careers as Naval and Marine Corps Officers.

Now is our opportunity to prepare for that immeasurable responsibility. I am fortunate enough to have a truly skilled midshipman staff who are passionate about the program and bring different experiences and perspectives to the table.  So far this semester they have put together a number of successful training evolutions, including leadership labs focusing on moral and ethical discussions, and lectures from university professors and VADM Bushong. We have a number of fun evolutions planned for the coming month, such as the MIT Beaver Cup Regatta and BU Joint Service Sheehan Cup.  I am excited to see how the second half of the semester works out.

Looking beyond this semester, our 1/c Navy Option midshipmen have completed their service and ship selections and are waiting to receive orders. Our 1/c Marine Option midshipmen should hear about their TBS dates within the next month.  It is exciting to think the culmination of our four years of training is only two months away. I trust that our 1/c MIDN are ready to hit the fleet and complete their mission.

Very Respectfully,

Michael Simpson

Midn BnCO

Battalion Commanding Officer’s Closing Remarks: Mic Byrne

MIDN Byrne leads MIT Company at the PIR
MIDN Byrne leads MIT Company at the PIR


I never deserved to be your Commander. I knew that going in. So did you. I believe the same holds true now.

So my parting words will be simple: thank you.

I want to say thank you to each and every one of you for signing a blank check to your country; a check good for anything up to and including your life. That is a responsibility few will ever understand. You must recommit yourself to this responsibility each and every day.

MIDN Byrne with his date at the Birthday Ball

I want to thank my commanders for leading me, just as much as they have led their companies and platoons. It was truly an honor to serve you while you showed me what it means to be a leader. I look up to you more than you know. Go lead others as you have led me.

I want to thank my staff for catching me each and every time I succumbed to my foolish nature. Your patience and positive attitude in spite of what sometimes seemed like overwhelming burdens has been an inspiration. Never lose your faith. And never forget what we did here.

MIDN McCormick (BnXO), Byrne (BnCO), and Reytblat (CMC) made up the Fall 2013 Triad
MIDN McCormick (BnXO), Byrne (BnCO), and Reytblat (CMC) made up the Fall 2013 Triad

I want, most of all, to thank the two men who actually kept the ship afloat: Mike McCormick and Vadim Reytblat. Words cannot describe my heartfelt gratitude and reverence for your loyalty, dedication, spirit, and friendship. You have made an indelible mark on my heart and on the heart of this Battalion. Thank you.

I wish I could have done more. I wish I could have been the Commander you deserve. But for what it’s worth, I leave you with four second-rate lessons in leadership that I’m still struggling to master myself:


MIDN Byrne addresses Birthday Ball attendees
MIDN Byrne addresses Birthday Ball attendees

Be a warrior.

Fight for virtue.

Lead with love.

And know that you, too, are loved.


Very respectfully,

Midshipman 1/c Mic Byrne, Jr.

Battalion Commander (Ret.)


BnCO’s Opening Remarks


To all our returning Midshipmen, welcome back. To all our new 4/c, welcome to the Battalion. My staff and I have prepared a productive and engaging semester of activities and events designed to prepare you all to be the best Midshipmen, and by extension the best future officers, that you can possibly be. This semester’s focus will be on solidifying and strengthening the integration of the Boston NROTC Battalion and increasing our visibility on campuses using a three-part formula: Academic success, excellence, and, most importantly, integrity.

MIDN 1/c Byrne with Commander Huey on board the USS Virginia
MIDN 1/c Byrne with Commander Huey on board the USS Virginia

The Boston NROTC Battalion is comprised of some of the most prestigious universities in the country. With such prestige comes an expectation that Midshipmen take full advantage of the resources at their disposal to obtain the most essential element of any career, especially that of a Navy or Marine Corps officer: an education. Your responsibility for academic success extends beyond personal motivations and derives from the hands of every American citizen. I expect nothing short of your very best.

Consistent with the Sailor’s creed, we are “committed to excellence and the fair treatment of all.” This commitment to excellence extends beyond our duties in uniform and into our studies and lives as students and citizens. We, as Midshipmen, are expected to exemplify a commitment to excellence in demeanor, appearance, respect, and duty and to carry that spirit of excellence into every facet of our lives. We must never forget that we are ambassadors to the United States Armed Forces.

At the core of our efforts we must guard a sound and virtuous conscience. Recalling the words of our brothers and sisters in arms in the Cadet Prayer at West Point, Midshipmen are expected “to choose the harder right instead of the easier wrong, and never to be content with a half-truth when the whole can be won.” We must always choose the path of integrity, and lead our shipmates to do the same.

I want you to know that though I will be your commander, I am here to serve you. Let’s make this semester a good one.

Very respectfully,

MIDN James Michael Byrne, Jr.