Naval retirement ceremony part of festivities

Published 12:00 am Thursday, November 12, 2015


There were a number of reasons Chief Petty Officer Mike Abraham, U.S. Navy, chose to have his retirement ceremony in Andalusia Wednesday morning.

But chief among them was the opportunity for his mother, Sandra, to be a part of it.

Mike Abraham and his mom, Sandra, following his retirement ceremony Wednesday.

Mike Abraham and his mom, Sandra, following his retirement ceremony Wednesday.

Abraham, who retired with a total of 28 years of combined active and reserve service with the U.S. Navy, said life circumstances had prevented his mom from being a part of previous ceremonies.

“My mother was never able to attend my high school graduation, or graduation from boot camp, or other ceremonies,” he told the assembled crowd at the annual Veterans Day program held in Andalusia. “She endured years of not knowing where I was because of the work I was doing.”

Abraham, who now is an officer in the Andalusia Police Department, presented his mother with a bouquet of three roses representing himself, his brother and his sister, and later gifted her the American flag he received in the ceremony.

Abraham said he chose to make Andalusia his home after his military service because his mother had moved here, and he had friends on the police force.

His duty stations included Jacksonville, Fla., Pensacola, Gulfport, Miss., Iceland, Sicily, Bermuda and Kuwait. His shipboard detachments were to the USS Theodore Roosevelt, and JSS John F. Kennedy. His detachments were Artic Circle, Northern Europe, Southern Europe, Africa, North America, South America, United Arab Emirates, Southwest Asia, the Caribbean and Mediterranean.

He was recalled to duty after the Sept. 11 attacks and named chief of a 115-man military police unit.

During his career, he received more than 42 awards, letters of commendation, letters of appreciation and citations.