This site is for mothers of kids in the U.S. Navy and for Moms who have questions about Navy life for their kids.



Choose your Username.  For the privacy and safety of you and/or your sailor, NO LAST NAMES ARE ALLOWED, even if your last name differs from that of your sailor (please make sure your URL address does not include your last name either).  Also, please do not include your email address in your user name. Go to "Settings" above to set your Username.  While there, complete your Profile so you can post and share photos and videos of your Sailor and share stories with other moms!

Make sure to read our Community Guidelines and this Navy Operations Security (OPSEC) checklist - loose lips sink ships!

Join groups!  Browse for groups for your PIR date, your sailor's occupational specialty, "A" school, assigned ship, homeport city, your own city or state, and a myriad of other interests. Jump in and introduce yourself!  Start making friends that can last a lifetime.

Link to Navy Speak - Navy Terms & Acronyms: Navy Speak

All Hands Magazine's full length documentary "Making a Sailor": This video follows four recruits through Boot Camp in the spring of 2018 who were assigned to DIV 229, an integrated division, which had PIR on 05/25/2018. 

Boot Camp: Making a Sailor (Full Length Documentary - 2018)

Boot Camp: Behind the Scenes at RTC

...and visit - America's Navy and also Navy Live - The Official Blog of the Navy to learn more.

OPSEC - Navy Operations Security

Always keep Navy Operations Security in mind.  In the Navy, it's essential to remember that "loose lips sink ships."  OPSEC is everyone's responsibility. 

DON'T post critical information including future destinations or ports of call; future operations, exercises or missions; deployment or homecoming dates.  

DO be smart, use your head, always think OPSEC when using texts, email, phone, and social media, and watch this video: "Importance of Navy OPSEC."

Follow this link for OPSEC Guidelines:



**UPDATE 4/26/2022** Effective with the May 6, 2022 PIR 4 guests will be allowed.  Still must be fully vaccinated to attend.

**UPDATE as of 11/10/2022 PIR vaccination is no longer required.

**UPDATE 7/29/2021** You now must be fully vaccinated in order to attend PIR:

In light of observed changes and impact of the Coronavirus Delta Variant and out of an abundance of caution for our recruits, Sailors, staff, and guests, Recruit Training Command is restricting Pass-in-Review (recruit graduation) to ONLY fully immunized guests (14-days post final COVID vaccination dose).  


RTC Graduation

**UPDATE 8/25/2022 - MASK MANDATE IS LIFTED.  Vaccinations still required.

**UPDATE 11/10/22 PIR - Vaccinations no longer required.


Please note! Changes to this guide happened in October 2017. Tickets are now issued for all guests, and all guests must have a ticket to enter base. A separate parking pass is no longer needed to drive on to base for parking.

Please see changes to attending PIR in the PAGES column. The PAGES are located under the member icons on the right side.

Format Downloads:

Navy Speak

Click here to learn common Navy terms and acronyms!  (Hint:  When you can speak an entire sentence using only acronyms and one verb, you're truly a Navy mom.)

N4M Merchandise

Shirts, caps, mugs and more can be found at CafePress.

Please note: Profits generated in the production of this merchandise are not being awarded to the Navy or any of its suppliers. Any profit made is retained by CafePress. Para Familias

Visite esta página para explorar en su idioma las oportunidades de educación y carreras para sus hijos en el Navy.




GM Moms

Group for Moms of Gunners Mates in A School or on Duty

Members: 212
Latest Activity: Feb 14, 2020

I thought it would be great to get a group together of people who have a Gunners Mate in training or one on duty. I hope we can all give each other a little insight as to what is in store for our Navy Men and Women!!

Discussion Forum

GM Sailors birthday

Started by Mamma073 Feb 14, 2020. 0 Replies

A school

Started by TravelMomma!. Last reply by Mamma073 Feb 14, 2020. 3 Replies

A school

Started by Carlsmom. Last reply by Carlsmom Sep 27, 2017. 6 Replies

Comment Wall


You need to be a member of GM Moms to add comments!

Comment by Mamma073 on February 14, 2020 at 2:37pm

Thanks for accepting my request to join the group. My Sailors PIR was 2/7/2020. That was more emotional than I expected. I was sooo proud of all the sailors that day. We got to have  him all weekend as his "A" school is in Great Lakes as well. He was told "A" school would start on Feb 20th. He had 2 weeks to get all his pre-testing done and he had it done in 4 days. He said he wanted to get it out of the way. He is "shadow" watching now with other watchmen. He was told yesterday that he would not be starting "A" school on the 20th but it would not be much longer. Has any others had this situation ? We were looking forward to having him graduate in August so we could stay on base at the RV camp with our coach.

If there is anyone who is on here and has not gone to their PIR we found a WONDERFUL hotel. it is about 20 minutes from base but sooooo worth it. Embassy Suites Northshore/Deerfield. It is modern, clean , free buffett breakfast ( actually really good food) Free cocktail party from 4:30pm - 7:30 pm. The rooms are really nice and all is open to a Atrium in the middle where there is also a restaurant. They would not let us pay for our sailors meals, They gave them to him for free for his service and the honor of him staying there .    

Comment by Sushicat242000 on December 6, 2019 at 10:33pm

My son graduated A school today. So proud!

Comment by Shotgiver909 on March 25, 2019 at 6:27am

Hi all, does anyone know how long A school is in great lakes

Comment by TahoeZephyr on March 30, 2018 at 8:17pm

Well, we are making some progress...our sailor is no longer in DTP :) He left for GL on Wednesday and arrived safely to report this morning.  Despite our advice to wait on purchasing a vehicle, he just couldn't stand not to have wheels.  He was fortunate to have had a great credit score already established as he obtained a secured credit card in high school and did well with it, so was able to get a decent loan from NFCU.  Now he's car (and insurance) poor, but seems happy.  Looking forward to having him class up  and start A School as he really had way too much time on his hands in DTP!

Comment by Gunnie430 on March 21, 2018 at 5:28pm
Honestly I would tell him to find something that just gets him or her from point A to point B until they can establish some credit. The easiest way for them to build credit is to take a $500 loan from the Navy Relief Society cause they won’t ask what it’s for and there’s not interest on the loan. Places like Virginia don’t have a interest cap and I’ve seen sailors buy vehicles at 47% interest. If they do buy a vehicle tell them to say away from the mom and pop dealerships or they will get hosed.
Comment by TahoeZephyr on March 17, 2018 at 12:38am

Thank you for your reply Gunnie430 :)

Comment by TahoeZephyr on March 17, 2018 at 12:32am

NavyMom2014 - thank you so much for your reply!  Great information :)  For now our son remains in a holding pattern in Goose Creek.  He decided he couldn't live without wheels, so I guess he will have to figure out the vehicle issue when he gets to A School.  I will check in again when he gets orders to head to GL.

Comment by NavyMom2014 on March 13, 2018 at 9:56pm

Hi TahoeZephyr!

Welcome to GM Moms!  A few small bits of info and advice for you to take or not, do with what you wish.

1)  Don't be in a hurry for your sailor to start A school.  My son was "on hold" for about 3 months while waiting to "class up" for his group to start.  He graduated from boot camp 12/5/14 and didn't start Tech and A school until mid to late April of 2015.  I don't know if that will be different because he has already been somewhere else for a while.  Just what we have experienced.

2) Once your sailor's group is toward the end of A school, they will "pick their orders."  If you are not familiar with that process, this is where they pick their specialty (if they so choose), which will determine whether he goes to C school and where, as well as determine where his first duty station will be.  His duty station can be, as Gunnie430 said, anywhere in this great big world and believe me, it is a great big world.  Over 6,000 miles separates me from my kid.

3)  I don't recommend (which came from my son while he was in GL) not to have a vehicle. One reason, he may not be permitted to get one. Two, he will not be in GL long enough to worry about it.  Three, it's one less thing you all will have to worry about taking care of in the few short days between A school graduation in GL and wherever he goes next.  There is a train stop not far from base and they took taxis when they went places.  They find ways to get around without a vehicle.  Our son has been at his duty station for over 2 years now, and just got a vehicle.  It is pretty much just something to get back and forth from his barracks and the ship, but mostly because he is expecting to have to find off-base housing when he gets back in from his current deployment patrol.  

If you have anything else, I can try to answer too.

Good luck to your sailor!

Comment by Gunnie430 on March 13, 2018 at 7:48pm
1. I can’t go into great detail about some of the courses he/she will be taking while in A school cause even though most of the stuff we deal with my not be classified as secret it is still classified. What you should know is that A school briefly covers everything he/she will need to know as a Gunnersmate.
2. Every C school is different so I can’t really say about how the course work but most C school do have homework they are required to complete.
3. As a Gunnersmate he/she could be stationed anywhere in the world besides a submarine. Anywhere there is an armory or ship they have a Gunnersmate.
4. I would personally not get a vehicle while in A school or unless the school allows it. I’ve seen to many sailors get into debate because they rushed to get a vehicle.
Comment by TahoeZephyr on March 10, 2018 at 1:54pm

Gunnie430 - Thanks for your reply.  I'm interested in learning a bit more about the following:  1) GM A School specific courses our sailor will take; 2) how does the follow up C School assignment work; 3) what are the base locations that our sailor may be assigned to once he graduates; 4) do you have any advice regarding the pro's/con's of having a vehicle while in A School?  Just trying to gain a general sense of what to expect in the next 6 months as our sailor tends to be a bit hit and miss on communicating the details :)


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