Diego of Hana Named Diving Unit Sailor of the Year

December 29, 2010, 10:41 AM HST · Updated December 29, 10:57 AM
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Navy Petty Officer 1st Class Jericho Diego, of Hana, Maui, was recently named the 2010 Sailor of the Year for his Mobile Diving and Salvage Unit.

Jericho Diego. Photo by Petty Officer 1st Class Joshua Kelsey.

Diego is deployed with MDSU 1 in Bahrain where he is supporting anti-terrorism operations under the U.S. 5th Fleet. As the Leading Petty Officer, Diego is responsible for planning operations, diplomatic clearances and travel arrangements, as well as all logistical requirements that enable each team to carry out their mission.

“He [Diego] has an enormous amount of responsibility supporting seven task units and ensuring every team has what they need to carry out their mission,” said CTG 56.1 operations officer, Chief Warrant Officer Joseph Theodorou.  “With his outstanding performance, motivation and dedication, as well as his ability to adapt to changing environments, I had no doubt that he would be MDSU 1’s Sailor of the Year for 2010,” said Theodorou.

Diego’s recent deployments included work in  American Samoa where he lead a team in the removal of 68,000 gallons of aviation gasoline from 160 feet of seawater. He also traveled to the Republic of Palau where he led a team in the recovery of 14 aircrew members missing in action since WWII, as well as Quynh Phoung, Vietnam, where his team positively identified a Navy F4-B Phantom aircraft missing since the Vietnam conflict.

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“The feeling of finding the remains of those that went before us and the fact that they and their families made the ultimate sacrifice for our country was definitely a highlight of my career,” Diego said.

Other honors that Diego has received in his 10 years of service include: Joint Service Achievement Medal, Coast Guard Achievement Medal, five Navy Achievement Medals, and three Flag Letters of Commendation.

(Information provided by the Third Army/U.S. Army Central on behalf of the Department of the Army)

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