There have been moments since I opened my business that I am in awe of the great things I get to share in. This particular event was one of those moments. I met Blake and Amber three years ago when Blake and my husband made Chief together. I was there the day Blake put on his anchors. Since then I have been at almost every major event his family has experienced since then including his wedding to Amber and the birth of his two youngest children, Pippa and Tobin. So when Amber asked me to photograph his commissioning, well that was an easy yes. How could I miss it? Plus, the bonus? My husband was to be the Honor Boatswain.
That morning I could hear Eric practicing his piping to make sure he got it just right. He was a little nervous as he hadn't piped in about a year and he was worried his pipe just wasn't up to par. Eric, myself and our daughter Ashley got dressed in our best and headed out to The Shifting Sands at Damn Neck Naval Base. It was a gorgeous, sunny day and when we arrived the parking lot was full of lots of smiling faces all their to witness Blake take his next steps on this new adventure with his family.
I couldn't help but tear up and get a little sad watching his anchors taken away or as my husband says "watching Blake chuck his anchors". It seems like only yesterday Amber and Layla were putting them on. However, watching Blake take his commissioning and the wonderful tradition involved in the ceremony was a moving and amazing moment in his career. As his friend, I couldn't be more proud. As a self-made family member, I will miss them living close by but I know they know I will always be a phone call away.
Bravo Zulu to Blake Miller and his beautiful family! Here are some pictures from the day Blake Miller went from Navy Chief to Navy Mustang.