Reading, MA — After spending much of last year in weather that reached upwards of 130 degrees, returning to Massachusetts in the middle of February felt like quite a shock to Reading resident, Jared Belliveau, but reuniting with his family was well worth it. Belliveau, a commander in the United States Navy, recently returned home to Reading from a year-long deployment to the Middle East. While deployed, he was assigned to Navy Expeditionary Combat Forces Central/Task Force 56, headquartered in Bahrain.
Based upon his experience in the Navy’s Coastal Riverine Force, Belliveau was assigned to Task Force 56 as the Plans and Future Operations Officer. In this role, he led the planning and coordination of expeditionary operations and exercises across the Fifth Fleet. He explained that although the most challenging aspect of his job was managing a very diverse set of missions, this made the job more interesting. “Our task force performed so many different types of missions on a regular basis that there was an almost-constant need to learn, analyze, and communicate information in order to overcome obstacles and get the job done. There was never a dull moment.”
When asked about the most rewarding part of his deployment, he cited his fellow sailors. “I had the opportunity to work for and alongside an incredible group of women and men from all over the U.S. They were consummate professionals – always striving for excellence while treating one another like family,” Belliveau said. “I learned a great deal from them and made some great friendships.”
Belliveau acknowledges that although leaving his family behind for an extended period of time was difficult, he credits a great support network with making the deployment possible. “Military families, especially those who reside outside of military concentration areas, bear much of the burden of deployments. I would not have been able to do my job overseas if it were not for the support of my family, friends, and neighbors back home. Unfortunately, not all service members have such support. I am grateful for what they have done for me while I have been away.”