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By Dolly Rairigh Glass

Hundreds of supporters, including Naval Air Warfare Center Training Systems Division Commander Capt. Steve Nakagawa, gathered and celebrated the groundbreaking of the Lone Sailor Memorial of Central Florida, following the conclusion of the 5th Annual Central Florida Navy League Wounded Warrior/Lone Sailor 5K on April 5. The Central Florida Navy League (CFNL) is leading the campaign to help recognize and preserve the rich Navy history in Central Florida by developing the Lone Sailor Navy Memorial in Blue Jacket Park at the site of the former RTC “Grinder.”

Capt. Steve Nakagawa joined Orange County Major Teresa Jacobs, along with other special guests for the official groundbreaking of the Lone Sailor Navy Memorial.  Photos courtesy of Orange County.

Capt. Steve Nakagawa joined Orange County Major Teresa Jacobs, along with other special guests for the official groundbreaking of the Lone Sailor Navy Memorial. Photo courtesy of Orange County.

Along with Nakagawa, Orange County Mayor Teresa Jacobs also took part in the event, and was joined by Congressman Daniel Webster, Representative John Mica, Orange County Commissioner Jennifer Thompson and Orlando City Commissioner Robert F. Stuart.

“As the former site of the legendary Naval Training Center, it is fitting that we now have a memorial to honor the courage and patriotic service of the thousands of young men and women who called Orange County home during their military training,” said Jacobs. “This is a way of making sure that every service man or woman that is serving today knows how much we appreciate their devotion to our country.”

Capt. Steve Nakagawa, sitting next to Representative John Mica, took part in the ceremonial groundbreaking for the Lone Sailor Navy Memorial.

Capt. Steve Nakagawa, sitting next to Representative John Mica, took part in the ceremonial groundbreaking for the Lone Sailor Navy Memorial. Photo courtesy of Orange County.

“This is a special time to be a part of the Central Florida Navy League as we move forward with the Lone Sailor Navy Memorial,” said Michael Motko, CFNL president. “The memorial will demonstrate gratitude to those who served at the Naval Training Center and stand as a reminder of the legacy of the Navy’s presence in Central Florida.”

More information on the Lone Sailor Navy Memorial can be found on the CFNL website.

Featured home page photo: Dignitaries participating in the Lone Sailor Navy Memorial groundbreaking take a picture in celebration of the moment. They are (L to R) Central Florida Navy League President Mike Motko, Orange County Mayor Teresa Jacobs, NAWCTSD Commander Capt. Steve Nakagawa, Orange County Commissioner Jennifer Thompson, and Bill Reuter, Central Florida Navy League. Photos courtesy of Orange County.

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