Gulfport Seabees build Djibouti school - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Gulfport Seabees build Djibouti school

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Builder Constructionman Selina Rodriguez & Utilitiesman 3rd Class Mike Mclean, assigned to NMCB 7, remove debris from Ecole 5. Builder Constructionman Selina Rodriguez & Utilitiesman 3rd Class Mike Mclean, assigned to NMCB 7, remove debris from Ecole 5.
Builder 1st Class Joe Waddell, assigned to NMCB 7, gives Lt. Col. Ron Ross, Army Medical Corps, a tour of the construction site at Ecole 5. Builder 1st Class Joe Waddell, assigned to NMCB 7, gives Lt. Col. Ron Ross, Army Medical Corps, a tour of the construction site at Ecole 5.
An overview of the site at Ecole 5, a five-classroom school in Djibouti that is currently under construction by the Seabees of NMCB 7. (Photo source: U.S. Navy/Petty Officer 2nd Class Nathan Laird) An overview of the site at Ecole 5, a five-classroom school in Djibouti that is currently under construction by the Seabees of NMCB 7. (Photo source: U.S. Navy/Petty Officer 2nd Class Nathan Laird)
GULFPORT, MS (WLOX) -

Staff Sgt. Robert Barnett
Camp Lemonnier Public Affairs
U.S. Armed Forces News Service

DJIBOUTI, DJIBOUTI (USAFNS) - Early next year, the laughter of about 1,200 children should fill the classrooms of the planned school Ecole 5 in Djibouti.

"We're planning to build a 6,508 square foot building," said Petty Officer 1st Class Joseph Waddell, Ecole 5 project supervisor. "Right now we're going to be building new columns for stability and structural integrity."

Waddell leads a team of seven sailors, working to clean up and reinforce the foundation and infrastructure of the expected school.

"The school is going to have five classrooms, two offices and two storage rooms," said Petty Officer 2nd Class Michael Moore, project crew leader. "The last couple days we've just been doing construction and ground work."

The team has also recently been working on excavation of the classrooms, cleaning out the rooms and preparing to install concrete walls with cement blocks for additional stability, Moore said. The projected completion is February 2011.

To take advantage of the training opportunity, Waddell and his team started the project June this year, with plans to finish the school in nine months.

"We should definitely be able to finish by February," Moore said.

NMCB 7 and its detachments are currently deployed to various locations throughout Europe and Africa as part of the battalion's regularly scheduled 2010 deployment, with the main body of the battalion operating from Camp Mitchell at Naval Station Rota.

NMCB 7 is one of the original 10 Seabee battalions authorized by the Chief of the Navy's Bureau of Yards and Docks, in 1942. The battalion is homeported at the Naval Construction Battalion Center Gulfport, MS, home of the Atlantic Fleet Seabees, and is currently the east coast's Battle "E" Seabee battalion.

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