Head of the U.S. Navy visits Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, Picatinny Arsenal

Head of the U.S. Navy visits Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, Picatinny Arsenal


By:  David Levinsky
Burlington County Times

JOINT BASE McGUIRE-DIX-LAKEHURST — Located deep within New Jersey’s Pinelands and miles from the Atlantic coast, the joint base is one of the last locations where you’d expect key U.S. naval operations to be occurring, let alone the Navy’s top leader.

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“Earlier this year, the secretary of the Navy came to see me and I took advantage of that moment to say, ‘Look we have a significant Navy presence in New Jersey, both at the joint base and at Picatinny Arsenal. ... I’d love for you to see it,’” Menendez said following tours of both installations. “I said I don’t remember the last time we had a secretary of the Navy here.”

The senator stressed that both installations have proven to be indispensable to national security, with Picatinny serving as the home of the Department of Defense’s Joint Center of Excellence for Guns and Ammunition, which supplies weapons and technical support for all the branches of the U.S. military, and the Naval Surface Warfare Center’s Ordnance Disposal Technology Division, which handles research, development and acquisition of guns and ammunition for the Navy.

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Menendez said he expects that bipartisan teamwork to protect and enhance the joint base and other New Jersey installations will continue.

“The importance of the base has brought the New Jersey delegation together, including those who don’t represent any component of the base, either its people or its physical geography,” he said. “It’s brought everyone together, which I think it speaks incredibly well of the delegation, because we’re talking about putting New Jersey first, but even above that, putting the nation first. And this base puts the nation first.”

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