USN Public Affairs Announcement Regarding Disestablishment
Naval Training Center at San Diego to disestablish after 74 years. Courtesy of Naval Training Center Public Affairs.
SAN DIEGO (NWSA) -- In 1923, the first recruits walked onto the newly commissioned Naval Training Center, San Diego, ready to serve their country and learn about the Navy. It had taken almost 10 years to bring Navy training to San Diego, but once established, the command maintained an astounding presence for 74 years. The era is now coming to an end. On March 21, 1997, NTC will hold its final ceremony and formally disestablish the base as a Naval installation.
NTC was comprised of two major component commands: Recruit Training Command (RTC) and Service School Command (SSC). When one thinks of NTC, one generally thinks of boot camp, and it's easy to understand why. Many recruits' Navy lives began here. From 1923 to 1993, all aspects of training -- from shipboard handling to basic seamanship to marching were taught at RTC. Since the beginning, millions of Sailors marched into their Navy careers from NTC's parade field. On Nov. 19, 1993, Company 215 graduated in the final pass-in-review. The first component command was gone.
Following basic training, most recruits remained at NTC to continue their military education in their particular operational field. SSC began with only four Navy schools in the 1920 and 1930s: Cooks and Bakers, Sound School, Bugler and Radio Operator.
As the century progressed, so did Navy education. By the 1940s, there were 40 courses and a student average population of 8,000 at SSC. By the 1950s, SSC offered nuclear power education and courses via closed-circuit television which enabled 2,000 Sailors to be trained simultaneously. Advanced technology and a Navy of highly complex and sophisticated ships permitted SSC to develop technically qualified, academically proficient and professionally focused Sailors throughout the 1980s and 1990s. But on Dec.20, 1996, SSC was disestablished; now NTC's second majorcomponent command was gone. It's now NTC's turn.
On March 21, more than 1,000 people are expected to witness the disestablishment of NTC. The ceremony will be held at Ingram Plaza at 2 p.m. with numerous dignitaries attending, including VADM Patricia Tracey, Chief of Naval Education and Training; the Honorable William Cassidy, Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Navy; Byron Wear, San Diego 2nd District Council member; and former center commanders.