Navy nurse from Jacksonville on front lines of military fight against COVID-19

Cmdr. Pete Bradford (Photo from US Navy Office of Community Outreach)

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Cmdr. Pete Bradford is playing a critical role in the U.S. Navy’s efforts to maintain a healthy and ready fighting force in the face of the coronavirus pandemic.

As a member of the nurse corps serving with Navy Medicine Readiness and Training Command Jacksonville, this Jacksonville resident is one of the 139 service members assigned to Task Force Southeast - Jacksonville, the primary Department of Defense support organization for the Federal Emergency Management Agency response to COVID-19.

“I serve as the assistant officer-in-charge for the medical staff,” Bradford said. “Our goal is to collaborate with FEMA, Florida Department of Emergency Management and the city of Jacksonville, to administer vaccinations to those seeking protection from the coronavirus.”

The DOD remains committed to breaking the cycle of transmission as it provides support to approved FEMA requests.

“All of our Navy personnel here at the Jacksonville Community Vaccination Center are uniquely capable of providing immediate medical expertise and training to help counter the threat of the pandemic to our Nation,” said Capt. David Barrows, medical officer-in-charge of Task Force Southeast - Jacksonville. “We are proud and privileged to serve our country and community in time of need, right here at home.”

According to Bradford, a 1984 graduate of Scappoose High School in Scappoose, Oregon, and 2001 Arkansas Tech University graduate, the values required to succeed in the Navy are similar to those found in Scappoose.

“Growing up in a small town and living with the values instilled in me by my grandparents, serving my country for many years and being a part of this mission has afforded me to opportunity to reflect on the importance of community,” said Bradford, “Serving the citizens of Jacksonville has been an honor and representing my hometown of Scappoose, has always been a privilege. Educators, coaches and friends were very instrumental in my early life, and I have always been appreciative of my small town roots.”

As a member of the Navy, Bradford, as well as other sailors, know they are a part of a service tradition that dates back centuries. Their efforts, especially during this time of challenge brought on by the coronavirus, will have a lasting effect around the globe and for generations of sailors who provide the Navy the nation needs.

“My family and I have served the country for 33 years in a Navy uniform,” added Bradford, “With multiple ballistic missile submarine deployments during the Cold War and medical deployments in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom, Operation Enduring Freedom and Pacific Partnerships (2015/2016) to Fiji, Papua New Guinea, Vietnam, Philippines, Timor Leste, Indonesia and Malaysia, I have a decent perspective on communities in distress. Our team is honored to serve a stateside mission to serve our own citizens in the battle against a global pandemic.”