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THIS DISCUSSION WAS CREATED SPECIALLY FOR THOSE WITH A FAMILY MEMBER AT OR PREPARING TO GO TO NAVY BOOT CAMP.

The single most important site to bookmark on your browser is the RTC site – the official website from the Navy containing information for recruits & families. Here you'll find the phone number/email for the Public Affairs Office, FAQs, mission statement for the Recruit Training Command, the history of the program. Here is where you will find the graduation dates for various Training Groups and the link to print your pass for parking at graduation (call PIR Pass In Review).  Many, many of your questions will be answered if you study the information on this site. 

Recruit Training Command - Main Page (clickable link)

      The Family Guide (clickable link - a pdf file) Important 3 page document.
      Print this, keep it handy for reference. READ THIS FIRST.  Answers to most questions.

      Recruit Training Command - Facebook Page  (clickable link) to see photos
      of current recruits at RTC

      GRADUATION STREAMING LIVE  (Clickable link) Watch our recruits graduate
          at 0845 Central Daylight Time on scheduled Fridays

STEP 1 - JUST FOR YOUR RECRUIT - A SPECIAL WEBSITE. Your recruit should study this fantastic power point presentation (the four PDF files) made by Craig, a N4M member. He was in the Navy himself and has a son in the Navy.  He has a website JUST for the recruits. If your son/daughter is struggling with getting answer, this site may be for him/her. Craig put together the PDF files and found the diagram of the barracks. He is a wealth of information.

       NAVY DEP.com (clickable link)

In the PDF files below, you'll see maps of the Recruit Training Center at Great Lakes, the ILL area, photos, diagrams, a list of the addresses of the "ships", - a great overview of the beginning processing days.  It will take you from the beginning when your recruits arrives at Great Lake to the end of processing days - you will feel like YOU have been processed too. This link opens up a PDF file. You can print a hard copy. If you are downloading this for the first time - it may take a minute or two (depending on the speed of your computer - possibly longer - be patient). You can also save this file to your own hard drive for future reference. But don't worry it'll always be here.

THE VIDEOS AND THE PDF FILES WILL A LONG TIME TO DOWNLOAD (THE FIRST TIME). It'll look like nothing is happening. Be patient. I would recommend printing these four files and putting them in a binder. It'll be a great way to show family and friends what your recruit will be going through.    

Boot_Camp_Processing_Days_P_days.pdf   (71 pages)
Aerial_View_of_Camp_John_Paul_Jones.pdf (23 pages)

Battle_Stations_Part1_of_2.pdf  (71 pages)

Battle_Stations_Part2_of_2.pdf  (69 pages)

STEP 2 - BOOT CAMP VIDEOS from P DAY to PIR

NEW VIDEOS. These were found on the official Recruit Training Command website as of Aug 2014.

OVER VIEW & FACES OF THE NAVY (YouTube) 

     Approximately 25 mintues. This video will give you an over view of Boot Camp, from the beginning with comments from people involved.

PASS-IN-REVIEW, Boot Camp Graduation

     Approximately 2 minutes. PIR at NAVY Recruit Training Command. Not near long enough but will give you an idea of what PIR is like.

OTHER VIDEOS

Navy Boot Camp - What To Expect

     Again another very brief over view.

BOOT CAMP - TIMELINE AT A GLANCE.

The YouTube videos below are essentially the ones featured on the RETURN TO BOOTCAMP series (which the Navy is no longer promoting) - but I found the links. BunkerQB.

  1. Welcome to U. S. Navy Bootcamp - P (processing) Days 13:35 minutes
  2. Reveille (click here)  YouTube - 1:43 minutes
  3. PT Physical Training (click here) YouTube - 2:02 mintues
  4. CNN Video - IDEAS - BattleStations 21 3:53 minutes
  5. Battle Stations 21 YouTube - 7:55 minutes

STEP 3 - COUNT DOWN TO DEPARTURE DATE.  Just click on the link below to a separate discussion listing all the of things to do the last month before your loved ones leaves for boot camp. 

    Things to Do in the Last Month Before Your Future Sailor Leaves for the RTC

STEP 4 - GET INVOLVED. GET CONNECTED.  BE PART OF A GROUP (Navy For Moms Groups that is). Preparing for PIR and other stuff. Don't do this alone.
  1. Find some groups to join. Start with the Navy MEPS & DEP Families group (if your recruit is waiting for Boot Camp), the Boot Camp Moms group (if your recruit has started Boot Camp already), your geographical group and of course, your trusty New Members Stop Here group where we have a panel of advisers to field your inquiries - questions are encouraged, crying towels on hand for those who need them.

    Navy MEPS & DEP Families (clickable link)
    Boot Camp Moms
    (clickable link)
  2. Along with the two above groups, you should join one of the following depending on when your sailor recruit is leaving for Boot Camp.

    Leaving For Boot Camp in January                Leaving For Boot Camp in February
    Leaving For Boot Camp in March                   Leaving For Boot Camp in April
    Leaving For Boot Camp in May                       Leaving For Boot Camp in June         
    Leaving For Boot Camp in July                       Leaving For Boot Camp in August         
    Leaving For Boot Camp in September           Leaving For Boot Camp in October         
    Leaving For Boot Camp in November           Leaving For Boot Camp in December  

  3. THE FORM LETTER:

    You will received this form letter (from RTC) soon after your sailor recruit starts boot camp. This form letter contains four important items.

    • Your recruit's SHIP # and DIVISION # (Ships which are their barracks are also named, like USS Triton, USS Reuben James. See diagram above. Don't confuse these with the real life actual Navy vessels in service).
      Just below that is his address. USE THIS address - not the one that you might have gotten from the recruit previously.
    • Further down, you'll find his graduation date. This is his PIR (Pass In Review) date.
    • Next, you'll see the password you will need to download the parking pass for PIR
    • Finally, you'll see the four names your recruit has listed officially as his guests. (4 per recruit, limit could be 3 guests if the divisions are large - see the Family Guide above)
      NOTE: IMPORTANT UPDATE (OCTOBER 2012) ON EXTRA GUESTS. RTC'S POLICY HAS CHANGED. READ THE FOLLOWING DISCUSSION:
      Extra guest No Longer Allowed Into The Graduation (PIR) Ceremony

    If you are lucky, you'll find a very brief note from your recruit. There is not much room to write, so don't be disappointed if the letter is short - this will be the first written communication from your sailor recruit.

    Click HERE to see sample of the form letter.

  4. If you have an address (either from your recruiter or from your form letter), start writing, use plain regular letter size envelopes - the two addresses may be different - don't panic - it'll get there - use the one your recruit gives you in the form letter as soon as you get it. Number your letters - your recruit may get them in bunches.

  5. When you get the form letter, find the PIR (Pass In Review or Graduation from Boot Camp) date, join the group for that and meet all the other moms/dads/wives/gfs with loved ones graduating on the same date (always on a Friday) - click here to see list of PIR groups. The number of divisions and the division numbers are also provided. You will be bonding with this group for approximately eight weeks. If a group has not been formed, consider creating the group yourself. Don't be afraid. You'll get plenty of guidance. We have a core group of fantastic "veteran" moms who have taken moms, dads, wives, fiancees, gfs with new recruits through this roller coaster ride called Boot Camp from the beginning right through PIR.
    Groups Listed by PIR date. (clickable link)

    A word about printing the parking pass. You need the PASSWORD to print the parking pass.  KEEP THIS FORM LETTER in a safe place. I would recommend making several copies and/or scanning it and saving a pdf file on your hard drive. If you are using Internet Explorer (and you can not open up the link), download Mozilla Firefox (free - will work) and use it to print your parking pass for PIR. Parking passes are normally available about one to two weeks prior to the actual PIR date. Go here to get your pass.

     http://www.bootcamp.navy.mil/upcoming_grads.asp  (clickable link)
  6. Next join this group to prepare for PIR. Read through the many topics. Your questions should be answered (such as hotels to stay? shuttle from hotel or take car? what to wear?  which airport to use? Sarge's phone number, ordering photos & dvd, etc.). Don't forget you might be able to go to the airport with your SAILOR after PIR and keep him/her company until his/her flight departure. Take any opportunity to spend more time with your sailor.

    PIR Reference Information Group (clickable link)
      
  7. If you know where your sailor is going for A school or his rating, check for groups listed by Job Rating. Later, If you know what ship he has been assigned to, check for groups listed by name of his ship - the active ships out on the Fleet (the real thing) not the bootcamp barracks named after ships. Looking for a local group or special interest group to join?  We have tabulated lists for those too.

    GROUPS: Listed By PIR Date (clickable link)
    GROUPS: Listed By Name of US Navy Ships/actual US Naval Vessels (clickable link)
    GROUPS: Listed By Navy Job/Ratings (clickable link)
     and companion Ratings, A School Locations & Links to Groups by lemonelephant
    GROUPS: Geographical By State (clickable link)
    GROUPS: Listed By Special Interest  (clickable link)

STEP 5 - Get to know the Navy For Moms site.  Just underneath the big blue Navy For Moms masthead, you will find a menu bar with a bunch of tabs. The tabs you will quickly become acquainted with will be "MY PAGE", "EVENTS", "FORUMS", "GROUPS", "BLOGS" and "CHAT"

  1. My Page - this will take you to YOUR PERSONAL page. Here you will find a summary of all comments you have posted, comments others have posted on YOUR page, summary of your activities in Forum Discussions, Blogs. On your personal page, you'll find a list of discussions you created or participated in as well as blogs that you have created. You can personalized the appearance of your page or add a PLAYLIST.COM box to play music. Check this on a daily basis - you may find a friendly welcome from one of us.
  2. Events - you can used this function to set up a meet and greet for any purpose. Just click on this tab and click +ADD.  Typically, there is a PRE-PIR (meet and greet on Thursdays at the Ramada Inn. The Ramada Inn hosts the meet and greet - they don't set it up - it's up family members within associated with each graduating class to set up this event. SARGE also host a meet and greet. Your PIR group will be able to give you info on both. Many groups use this to set up their meet and greets. You can make this a public or private event. People can RSVP. The creator of the event can send out a message to attendees without having to "friend" all the member first - this is very convenient for the organizers. 
  3. Forums - under Forums, you will find a number of Discussion categories (16). This is the place to go for discussions posted about a wide myriad of topics. Under "How To Do Stuff On N4M" you'll find master index lists of groups formed on this site. For example, there is a list of groups associated with PIR date, ships, job rating and special interest. When you click on Forums, you'll see "My Discussions" just underneath the menu bar - this is a summary of all the comments you have posted.
  4. Groups - here you will find all the groups that have been formed since the beginning. You can view the display by "Most members" (default), "Most active", "Latest" and "Latest activity".  In small print, just above the Featured Groups, you'll see "My Groups" - click on this to access a summary of groups that YOU belong to. If you start a group, you can choose to make it private or public. You can change it from one to the other after it has been created to hide or display the comments posted.
  5. BLOGS - blogs are like diaries - you can post anything (within the N4M general guidelines). This is not a great place to post request for information. Blogs are not organized. They come and go in sequential order by date.
  6. CHAT - "To chat or not to chat?" If you are familiar with chat, it's a great place to meet and catch up. Everything is in real time. The program only keeps so many lines of the dialog. If you need a quick response, someone may be there to respond with a quick answer or link. Everything is at a fast pace and in simplified computer-chat language. Occasionally, a new mom will find chat difficult to adjust to because a number of conversations going and any responses to her questions are direct and in short hand form. CHAT is definitely a fast paced environment. A new mom looking for gentle support should try one of the groups first or post in the Forum Discussions. But if you are looking for a quickie answer, there is usually someone around who will respond with link. It's not fair to ask the people in CHAT who are in one or more conversations to stop, slow down to accommodate your pace. Once you get up to speed, jump right in.

          KEEP THESE TIPS IN MIND ON USING THIS SITE:

  • If you are getting too many email notifications, just click "STOP FOLLOWING" located just underneath the input comment box or go to Settings, then Email to set your default parameters for email notification. If you are inundated with email notifications to your regular email addresses, you can control when you get an email notification. Just remember to check you personal page, you inbox if you turn off your notifications.
  • Look at your status box on the upper right - with INBOX, ALERTS, FRIENDS, SETTINGS. Just underneath that will be a line with invitations from others to attend events or join another group.  Go to "HOW TO DO STUFF ON N4M" category under FORUMS and look for the discussion relating to this various topics, such as composing a message to a friend, sending out a friend request, changing your username, password.
  • With any group, there are discussions added by members. The list displayed may not be the entire list (group admins can set the number to display). Be sure to click "View All" under the Discussions (on the right just under the displayed list of discussions).
  • If you are connected on CHAT, you'll hear a beep, beep-beep every time a member in CHAT posts a comment. Disconnect from CHAT, the beeping will stop. 
  • DO NOT USE YOUR REAL FIRST & LAST NAMES as your USERNAME. For your sailor recruit's privacy and your privacy, input something that can not be used to identify your sailor recruit. Additionally, do not use your email address.  If you have done so and wish to change it, simply click SETTINGS and follow the instructions. Be sure to click SAVE.

ACKNOWLEDGEMENT: I am indebted to the many "veteran" moms, dads, wives, fiancees, girlfriends who have been on this site and have contributed so much to the site's success and to the information that I have gathered here. In particular, I would like give a special thanks to the ladies who run the the Boot Camp Moms group, PIR groups & the Navy MEPS & DEP group. There are people in many areas who have contributed hours and hours - maybe even hundreds of hours in the Forum Discussions, to Blogs and in Chat. For an all volunteer site, it has been amazingly effective.

This guide is an on going project, please feel free to make suggestions. We will revise this periodically.  Please note - if someone out there would like to revise/rewrite this or take over, please feel free to give it a shot. Just call me. BunkerQB

Tags: Boot, Camp, Command, Depper, Division, Great, Lakes, Navy, Parking, Pass, More…Password, RTC, Recruit, Ship, Survival, Training, barrack

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GREAT JOB!!!  They need hire you as an Admin, so you get paid for all the work you do here.

LOL. You and I need to get together. When are you coming to CA? Got a guest room for you. I ain't going to Chicago - too cold.

We are looking at taking the kids and grandkids to Disney Land for a big family vacation latter this year.  How close are you to it?  We could hook up for a dinner and drinks.

 

It has been a heat wave up here!  Was 50 degrees here today!  Can you belive that!!!  We have had less than 2 inchs of snow this season (so far)!  I have a spare room also if you do ever come up here.

I am half way between San Fran and San Jose. I have lots of family in San Diego and Los Angeles - so it's possible. I might fly down for the day. Disneyland is nice - Knott's Berry Farm has a restaurant with the best fried chicken. We'll revisit this as we get closer.

Wow!!! This is great.  They need to print this up and hand out at the recruiters office.  I was on navy-parents before N4M and can't imagine my son going thru boot camp, the nuc pipeline and sub underways without me being able to vent, ask questions and occasionally be able to help another mom out.  No one in my family had been military so it was a whole new experience for me. The info on this site has helped me to not bother/pester my son so much.  Thanks to both of you for all your work and advice. 

If you go to the recruiters off, please tell them about what BB posted

Son's recruiter told me I knew more about the Navy than he did the other day LOL and it's all thanks to BB and this site!

Angie, did you know that I am going to pay Hannah good money for this comment. At least an extra glass of wine at McNear's, Petaluma - where we will be having our next San Francisco Bay Area Navy Families meet and greet. Any one in the San Fran Bay area (or going to be in the area) is welcome to join us. Here is link to RSVP.  

http://www.navyformoms.com/events/petaluma-san-fran-bay-area-marin-...

Let's not forget Craig, Emma, Abby, Judy, Anti M, Mark, lemonelephant, Denise many who patrol this site and help wherever we could.  And once you get to Boot, there'll be diannep, FireTeam, Jessica, lemon again, LalaRibbon to take your through that phase.

Yes, a big thank you hug to all. And BB I'm taking you up on that wine!

Great. My husband's old Stanford friend is going to join us - he lives in Petaluma. He is sort of a hippy (I think so anyway). We are pretty straight laced. He and my husband vote Dem. I vote Rep. It makes for interesting conversation. His wife died about 6 years ago.

Does this group still exist?  I clicked on the link but a blank form appeared.

bluemom

The San Francisco Bay Area Navy Families group is very active. We usually get together at least 5 to 6 times a year. Last year we had 22 for a meet and greet in Santa Rosa and 20 for a meet and greet in San Mateo and 16 for a BBQ in Walnut Creek. A South Bay/San Jose group gets together 2/3 times at Tony and Alba's on Winchester Blvd - whenever we feel the need. My son has been out of the Navy since 2012 but I love getting together w my N4M families. Here is the link to the SF Bay Area group. It's a private group, you'll have join to see comments. Many of our members are from other parts of CA and quite a few from across the country. You are welcome to join us.

http://navyformoms.com/group/sfbayareanavyfamilies

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