Military ways are quite enigmatic, resulting in an alien world where acronyms often replace words and where “1330” is a time of day. Add to that, the Navy is not only military, it is nautical, which means that centuries of sea-going terminology and practices are added to the confusion. While the young men and women who sign on to become Sailors in the United States Navy receive extensive indoctrination and training, their parents do not. As their sons and daughters are becoming uniformed, the parents soon find themselves rapidly becoming uninformed.
This book serves as the antidote to that debilitating disease of “uninformity.” In these pages parents will find many of the mysteries of the Navy explained. It is both a translation guide—helping parents to understand the many new terms they will be hearing—and also a cultural guide, an explanation of their son’s or daughter’s chosen new world that includes high standards and a level of dedication not found in most walks of life. Alongside chapters covering uniforms, ranks, ships, and aircraft, parents will find explanations and guidance as to what to expect when their child first joins the Navy, the many benefits their Sailor will enjoy, and what parents should bring and do when visiting their Sailors in their new and somewhat alien world.
Derived from another Naval Institute Press book by the same author, The Citizen’s Guide to the U.S. Navy, this informative book is a highly accessible guide that explains the strange ways of the Navy in terms that non-Sailors can understand. In nine short chapters, the author reveals such things as the many titles that military people have, the various alphanumeric designations that military personnel use to identify and distinguish themselves, the organization of the Navy and the Department of Defense, the origins and practices of such things as saluting, flag etiquette, side boys, and odd language (such as “aye-aye”), and an explanation of the many missions of the Navy. Also included is a primer on the various ships and aircraft that make up today’s fleet, a guide to “reading” a uniform, and the demystification of such things as the phonetic alphabet and military time.
Designed to be an easy read for those who want the whole story, The Parent’s Guide to the Navy is also a useful reference work, easily “navigated” to find needed information.
While parents need not be experts on the Navy, there is a middle ground that this book serves by providing a readable, edifying, and often entertaining explanation of this important but sometimes mysterious branch of the U.S. armed forces.