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Friday Harbor's Paul McFadden reaches top of the Navy's enlisted ranks
By DOUGLAS H. STUTZ
U.S. Navy public affairs
Hospital Corpsman Senior Chief Paul McFadden, Friday Harbor High School Class of 1981, had even more people than normal seeking him out recently at Naval Hospital Bremerton.
But instead of McFadden’s daily routine of dispensing wisdom, solving problems and sharing professional knowledge, it was staff members giving back to him in a steady stream of well-wishes upon his promotion to hospital corpsman master chief.
“I found out from our skipper, Captain Mark Brouker, and Command Master Chief Kendal S. Crane, who came into my office and congratulated me,” said McFadden, who then phoned Deborah, his wife, followed by his mother to inform them of the momentous promotion.
“They were both ecstatic. My sons, Zachary 11, Michael 8, thought it was pretty cool.”
Crane noted, “He already has been performing at the level of master chief since I met him. Paul will make an outstanding command master chief.”
McFadden was one of six selections assigned to commands of Navy Medicine West. In a complimentary note, CMDCM (SW/AW) Kathy Hansen command master chief of Navy Medicine West, sent congratulations to all the selectees. “The six selections is our highest number in years,” she noted.
McFadden, whose mother, Mary McFadden, spent 29 years in Friday Harbor before relocating recently to Bellingham, has been in the Navy for 24 years with the last two years at NHB where he has handled three jobs: as the senior enlisted leader for Naval Branch Health Clinic Puget Sound Naval Shipyard, directorate leading chief petty officer for clinical support services, and directorate leading chief petty officer for administration.
His busy schedule notwithstanding, he said his selection is not so much his doing as a result of the many contributions from staff members.
“I’m proud about the accomplishment but there really is no way I would have made it had it not been from all of the hard work of the sailors I have had the pleasure of working for and leading,” McFadden said.
“The Chief’s Mess has also been very supportive throughout my tenure here. The quality and good-natured fun of the chiefs here is second to none.”
McFadden advises others in selection-process planning to look to the Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy Mission Vision and Guiding Principles.
“Use those principles as actual guidelines and not a decoration on a bulkhead,” he said. “Take care of your sailors and they will take care of you. But most of all ‘Be the Chief.’ ”