TSC selects QM2 Laseter Junior Sailor of the Year

Training Support Center (TSC) Great Lakes announced its 2014 Junior Sailor of the Quarter, during an award ceremony Feb. 27.

“This is such an honor as there are so many outstanding sailors here,” said recipient QM2 (SW/AW) John Laseter, Navy Military Training instructor (NMTI).

Dissatisfied with the part-time jobs he was working in his hometown of Chicago, Laseter decided to join the Navy in early 2007 for a better opportunity as well as to see the world.

Following boot camp, Laseter attended QM “A” School at Great Lakes.

During his first duty station aboard USS Boxer (LHD4), Laseter had a unique experience as he had only been deployed about two and one-half months when in April 2009, Boxer was en route to assist two other ships that negotiated the release of Capt. Richard Phillips who had been held hostage by Somali pirates. Following his rescue, Phillips was transported to Boxer for a medical examination and rest.

“That was pretty intense as I had just finished watch duty and was still on the bridge right when the rescue was about to go down as Capt. Phillips had just been rescued.”

Next Laseter, arrived at TSC in September 2012 and began working at USS Farragut (Bachelor Enlisted Quarters 632).

“So far being here has been a great experience. You really grow into what type of leader you want to be in dealing with all the different students and their personal problems. It’s work, but it’s very rewarding work,” said Laseter.

Laseter has provided the highest quality training, personal and professional mentorship to more than 400 apprentice-level sailors on military customs, courtesies and personal financial management. His actions directly enhanced sailor readiness before reporting to fleet assignments.

Additionally, he provided outstanding bystander intervention training to more than 75 sailors, providing critical training in support of the Navy’s fight against sexual assault.

“Laseter is a model leader in his barracks, and as a 2nd class petty officer leading 314 sailors daily, where else in the fleet would he have this responsibility as a quartermaster?” said TSC CMC (SW/AW) Jeffrey A. Kirby. “He is truly engaged in all aspects of sailorization here.”

He’s also a qualified master training specialist and department energy conversation representative which isn’t easy when you have 17 barracks for whom to be responsible.”

Laseter has also volunteered at a local Public Action to Deliver Shelter (PADS) that coordinates nightly with various churches and shelters in the city of North Chicago to provide students to help in distributing meals, blankets, and shelter to people that need it.
“This has been especially important during this brutal winter that Chicago has experienced so far,” said Kirby.

In addition to his regular duties in the Navy, Laseter is taking courses through Columbia College as he works toward his associate’s degree in general studies.
“I plan on making a career of the Navy as I’ve already done seven years so I might as well finish it out,” said Laseter. “If you’re motivated and you’re a leader, coming to TSC is probably the best set of orders you can get.”