US Naval Hospital Guam Sailor Awarded GEICO’s Military Service Award

by Jaciyn Matanane, U.S. Naval Hospital Guam Public Affairs
Stripes Guam

AGANA HEIGHTS, Guam--Aviation Structural Mechanic First Class Petty Officer Renemar Astorga, assigned to U S Naval Hospital Guam in 2015 as the command’s lead substance abuse counselor, is awarded the 2017 GEICO Military Service Award.

GEICO, an insurance company, well-known across the nation, launched their Military Service Awards Program in 1988, recognizing enlisted members of the armed forces for their contributions in one of three categories; drug and alcohol abuse prevention, fire safety and fire prevention, and traffic safety and accident prevention. Astorga is named as GEICO’s Military Service Award winner for his outstanding work with drug and alcohol abuse prevention on the island of Guam.

Astorga received an early morning phone call on February 6, 2018, from the Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy, Steven S. Giordano congratulating him on the win.

“I was surprised, honored and humbled to receive a phone call from MCPON Giordano,” said Astorga. “You don’t receive a phone call like that every day. Going up against a Senior Chief in the finals, I thought I had no chance.”

When Astorga arrived to U S Naval Hospital Guam, he worked tirelessly alongside colleagues to establish the very first level I and level II Drug and Alcohol Treatment Program in 2015. The treatment program is offered to Guam’s military and their dependents, seeing over 150 patients in the last two years. With the program being available in-house, patients are no longer referred off-island, saving the Navy over $385k per year.

“It’s a huge accomplishment and it is awesome to be recognized for something that I love doing,” said Astorga. “I don’t think I will be where I am today without the guidance of my mentors, Senior Chief Petty Officer Michael Bibera and Lieutenant Commander Connie Braybrook.”

Astorga is a native of the Philippines, but grew up in San Diego, Calif. and is happily married to his wife Auvie. Astorga and Auvie share three children, Reyden, Aileen, and Alaina. Astorga will travel to Washington D.C. with his family to attend a recognition ceremony in April 2018.

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