Sailors from the Navy element of the U.S. Transportation Command’s Joint Transportation Reserve Unit piped aboard a new skipper Dec. 3, signifying the formal relief of Navy Capt. Curtis Renard, who will retire after 30 years of service.
Air Force Brig. Gen. Thomas Kittler, JTRU commander, officiated the ceremony during which Navy Capt. John Mooney assumed command of the Navy element of the JTRU.
As commander of JTRU’s Navy element, Mooney will lead a staff of 40 Navy Reservists and serve as a chief watch officer for USTRANSCOM’s Deployment Distribution Operations Center. The JTRU is comprised of soldiers, sailors, airmen, Marines and Coast Guard reservists who augment USTRANSCOM to provide transportation, sustainment and distribution to our nation’s warfighters across the globe every single day.
Addressing all hands in his new command for the first time, Mooney affirmed the pride he takes in the USTRANSCOM mission and support provided by reservists.
“I am extremely happy to be here, I’m thrilled, I feel it’s a true answer to prayer,” Mooney said. “When you’re in a Navy reserve unit, you want to be at a place with incredible purpose and a place with a mission that’s going to impact the country, your service and your time away from home and is going to be worthwhile.”
Mooney, a native of Brick Township, N.J., graduated from Embry Riddle Aeronautical University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Professional Aeronautics in December 1992.
In May 1989, Mooney entered the Navy as a naval cadet and graduated from Aviation Officer Candidate School at Naval Air Station Pensacola, Florida. He was commissioned an ensign and designated a naval aviator at Beeville, Texas, in September 1991.
Capt. Mooney’s initial fleet assignment was with the “Maces” of VAF-27 from 1993 to 1996, where he deployed aboard the USS Kitty Hawk (CV 63) and again on the USS Independence (CV 62). Following deployment, he was selected as a Strike Fighter Tactics Instructor and attended TOPGUN, the Navy Fighter Weapons School at NAS Fallon, Nev.
In 2000, Mooney reported to Tactical Support Wing as a Selected Reservist. In 2003, he mobilized with Strike Fighter Squadron 201 and deployed aboard the USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN 71), where he flew the F/A 18 Hornet in combat missions over Iraq in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. Prior to assuming command of the JTRU Navy element here, Mooney served as the Chief of Naval Air Training Reserve Component Commander at NAS Corpus Christi, Texas.
During the change of command ceremony, Kittler expressed his confidence in Mooney’s ability to support JTRU’s global mission, while also offering high praise for Renard.
“It’s a bittersweet day for us as we wish Curt a fond farewell, and welcome aboard a new shipmate John Mooney,” said Kittler. “Thank you both.”