Gidget Fuentes

About Gidget Fuentes

Gidget Fuentes is a freelance writer based in San Diego, Calif. She has spent more than 20 years reporting extensively on the Marine Corps and the Navy, including West Coast commands and Pacific regional issues, and most recently was a senior writer and the San Diego bureau chief for Marine Corps Times and Navy Times.


Recent Posts By the Author


Navy Wants to Make Surface Fleet Training Harder with More Live, Virtual Opposing Forces and Ranges

Navy Wants to Make Surface Fleet Training Harder with More Live, Virtual Opposing Forces and Ranges

USS Farragut (DDG-99) launches a Standard Missile (SM-2) during a missile exercise (MISSILEX) on April 13, 2018. US Navy Photo

SAN DIEGO, Calif. – As the Navy continues to inject more live, virtual and constructive events to prepare ships’ crews to defeat potential threats, surface warfare training officials are looking to add more realistic adversaries and tougher scenarios via virtual training. Read More

Navy Wants to Bolster Advanced Schoolhouse Training to Prep SWOs for Higher-Level Fight

Navy Wants to Bolster Advanced Schoolhouse Training to Prep SWOs for Higher-Level Fight

Ensigns Jeffrey Wong, Micheal Marner, Jesse Himes, and David Garza stand watch aboard a simulated bridge during the inaugural Junior Officer of the Deck (JOOD) course at Naval Base San Diego. The four-week course, a new addition to the revised Surface Warfare Officer (SWO) career path, includes training in a broad range of integrated bridge fundamentals. With this course, newly commissioned ensigns now attend both the Basic Division Officer Course (BDOC) and JOOD to prepare them to drive ships and lead Sailors. US Navy photo.

SAN DIEGO, Calif. – As the Navy emphasizes foundational basics in training the surface fleet, schoolhouse officials are weighing adding more warfare training and skills for mid-grade surface warfare officers attending advanced courses. Read More

Pacific Deputy: Coast Guard a Continuing 'Force Multiplier' with Navy in Global Missions

Pacific Deputy: Coast Guard a Continuing ‘Force Multiplier’ with Navy in Global Missions

Capt. Bob Little, commander of the U.S. Coast Guard Legend-class cutter USCGC Stratton (WMSL 752), explains the process of a replenishment-at-sea (RAS) to a Royal Malaysian sailor as part of the at-sea phase of Maritime Training Activity (MTA) Malaysia 2019 on Aug. 17, 2019. MTA Malaysia 2019 is a continuation of 25 years of maritime engagements between the U.S. Navy and Royal Malaysian Navy serving to enhance mutual capabilities in ensuring maritime security and stability. US Navy photo.

SAN DIEGO, Calif. – The Coast Guard’s ability to fold into the U.S. joint armed forces to protect America’s interests globally has “never been more relevant,” a senior Coast Guard officer in the Pacific region told a Navy audience. Read More

Navy Facing Billion-Dollar Tab, Years to Get China Lake Fully Operational After Quake

Navy Facing Billion-Dollar Tab, Years to Get China Lake Fully Operational After Quake

Public works personnel assigned to Naval Facilities Southwest repair transformers to restore power in the housing area of Naval Air Weapons Station China Lake on July 9, 2019. US Navy Photo

A pair of strong earthquakes that struck the Navy’s key hub for air warfare research, development and testing six weeks ago handed the service a huge bill to replace, rebuild or repair damaged facilities.

The Navy estimates more than $2 billion in repairs are needed to repair facilities damaged by a pair of earthquakes six weeks ago at its vital hub for air warfare research, development and testing. Read More

Retired MSC Ship Master Admits Husbanding Contract Conspiracy, Fined $2,100

Retired MSC Ship Master Admits Husbanding Contract Conspiracy, Fined $2,100

The dry cargo and ammunition ship USNS Charles Drew (T-AKE 10) steams alongside the aircraft carrier USS John C. Stennis (CVN-74) during a replenishment-at-sea in 2019. US Navy Photo

A former Military Sealift Command ship captain admitted he received high-speed rail travel and hotel stays, an iPad and expenses for a two-week, holiday family trip to South Korea in exchange for giving a South Korea-based husbanding company details about scheduled port visits. Read More

16 Marines Arrested for Alleged Human Smuggling, Drug-Related Offenses

16 Marines Arrested for Alleged Human Smuggling, Drug-Related Offenses

U.S. Marines with 1st Marine Division, participate in a change of command ceremony at Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton, California on June 13, 2019. US Marine Corps Photo

During an infantry battalion’s morning formation on Thursday at Camp Pendleton, Calif., 16 Marines were arrested on allegations they took part in illegal human smuggling and illicit drug-related offenses, 1st Marine Division announced. Read More

Cutter Bertholf's Indo-Pac Deployment Highlighted Coast Guard's National Security Role

Cutter Bertholf’s Indo-Pac Deployment Highlighted Coast Guard’s National Security Role

The U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Bertholf (WMSL 750), left, moves in formation with the Philippine Coast Guard vessels Batangas, center, and Kalanggaman during an exercise May 14, 2019. Bertholf is in the midst of a Western Pacific patrol under the tactical control of the U.S. Navy’s 7th Fleet. US Coast Guard photo.

On its recent Indo-Pacific patrols, the Coast Guard cutter USCGC Bertholf (WSML-750) thwarted illegal oil and coal shipments that violated of U.N. Security Council sanctions against North Korea, transited the Strait of Taiwan amid condemnation from China and worked with U.S. allies to bolster their own coast guard forces. Read More

California Earthquakes Leave Naval Station China Lake ‘Not Mission Capable’

California Earthquakes Leave Naval Station China Lake ‘Not Mission Capable’

California State Route 178 SW of Trona, following the M7.1 earthquake. Road is now closed for repairs. USGS Photo

SAN DIEGO – Two major earthquakes that struck Southern California late last week opened fault lines on Naval Air Weapons Station China Lake and prompted officials to evacuate residents. Since Saturday, the Navy testing installation has been declared “not mission capable until further notice.” Read More