Dear readers,

Seven years ago saw the creation of one of the best writing environments on the web. A place where people from around the world who have like interests could come together and write stories and build firm and long-lasting friendships. Sixth Fleet was born from the ashes of Tango Fleet.

Players and simulations have come and gone, yet we are still on the web. The Star Trek Franchise was thought to have ended some years ago, but we remained strong and steadfast. Then JJ Abrams flooded our cinemas with a brand new reboot of the Kirk era and Sixth Fleet grew with interest. New ideas were created for our simulations to explore, allowing our fleet to thrive.

Many things have happened over the past seven years that has served to shape our fleet into what it is today, but for now, I thought it would be a good to reflect on some things (good and bad) that have happened over the past year.

The most notable would be the passing of a much loved player who served in a variety of positions both in and out of character, Lyn Merical-Mosher passed away on Dec 3rd 2012. Not only did Lyn serve as CinC, but was fortunate to have one of the many simulations named after her (i.e. G12: Lacirem Nor) towards the end of Tango Fleet and the the beginning of Sixth Fleet. To honour her contributions to the fleet, Lyn has been placed in the Hall of Remembrance, where her name will never be forgotten. *Raises a glass* To you, Lyn.

The USS Cambrian, a long standing simulation, with a varied history but a plethora of memories, retired. Her crew were posted to other simulations in the fleet and are still enjoying the writing experience.

January and February 2013 were exciting times for the fleet. Change was afoot. With six years of electing a Commander in Chief and Deputy Commander in Chief, the senate pushed for and voted for a complete overhaul of the way things were managed within the fleet. The CinC and DCinC positions were retired indefinitely and the fleet entered a new era of exploration, where we had never been before. No one person would have overall responsibility of the fleet, but the the fleeters themselves would govern how things would run. The Constitution was disbanded and each simulation was granted freedom to run how they wanted. This caused a massive explosion of exciting possibilities for new simulations to join and for the existing ones to modernise their thinking and playing experience. Since then, a new sim is joining and the existing simulations have grown in player number. The Academy is flourishing and players feel far more enthused and are looking forward to the future.

As part of that bright, new future, Sixth Fleet were invited to run events in the SciWorld 2013 Convention in May, where players both from the fleet and outside can join forces and enjoy each others company in new settings. Hopefully this will happen next year, as well.

So, there has been a great many things happen to our beloved fleet, too many to mention here, but I assure you our rebirth is just the beginning. The future really is The Undiscovered Country (sorry, pun intended!).

CELEBRATIONS - AWARDS AND COMMENDATIONS
And so, to our anniversary celebrations.

To the players of the Ariadne,
To the players of the Avalon,
To the players of the Bismarck,
To the players of the Hyperion
To the players of the Pegasus...

We honour your contribution to the fleet as a whole, not just your writing prowess, but your interest and willingness to help make this fleet what it is today. Congratulations on seven years success, I wish I could give a medal, commendation or promotion to you all, as you all are awesome!

But there are a few who jump out and should be mentioned...

Commander Joshua Ward, currently the XO of the USS Avalon has been serving aboard the Avalon for over 5 years. This is a fantastic achievement. His Commanding Officer has this to say about him...

"I consider that 5 years of dedicated XO-ship through his many life changes and studies makes him well worthy of the DISTINGUISHED SERVICE ORDER. "

This award is open to any Sixth Fleet player who has been with the fleet for an exceptional length of time (more than five years, cumulative), and has provided either major contribution(s) to Sixth Fleet as a whole and has served with exemplary distinction in every role and position. This award may be granted to long-standing fleet officers where a promotion to Captain or an Admiralty rank may not be appropriate, and should be held in the highest regard.

Congratulations Commander.

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Lieutenant Commander Mo Breaux also of the USS Avalon, was part of the Sim Support team and volunteered where his services were needed. His Commanding Officer wishes to award him the highest honour in our fleet, the STARFLEET STAR.

This award is the highest honor available in Sixth Fleet and Starfleet as a whole.
It is presented to individuals who have contributed at a high standard to both posting on the ship, and providing additional work for the ship such as graphics, text, or other useful content for use by the ship Commanding Officer.

Congratulations Lieutenant Commander.

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To Rear Admiral Sam Jones, a long time player, CO and previous CinC. He has served in a number of positions, including the Cambrian, Oberon / Ariadne. He has served with utmost dedication, majorly so on the USS Cambrian, where he took command at the end to ensure the simulation would have the retirement it deserved, but also on the Oberon, where he was for many years a core player providing a steady stream of excellent posts and scientific background. Commodore Sam Jones is awarded the STARFLEET STAR.

Congratulations Rear Admiral.

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Vice Admiral Nathalie Chapman, another long standing player who has served as CO and CinC and now more recently as the CPA / AC. At a time of change, when the future seemed bleak and everything we once held dear was gone, Nathalie stepped up and volunteered to help and encourage us to move forward. Her dedication to the fleet and to the players is commendable. Her commitment to ensuring the future of the fleet continues is amazing. To Nathalie, on behalf of the Captain's Table and the fleet, I award you the STARFLEET STAR.

Congratulations Vice Admiral.

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Commodore Moritz Kraft, currently the joint Chief of Fleet Operations among other positions has been with the Fleet since 2005 and has served in a variety of positions along the way, helping to build this fleet from the inside out. He was one of the few players who took a stand during the rebirth early this year, helping to formulate the current state of Fleet operations. He continues to serve the fleet in a variety of positions and his dedication and commitment deserves only one reward. Commodore Moritz Kraft, for going way above and beyond the call of duty of any player within Sixth Fleet, for being strong when the fleet was shaking and showing an immense apt for logic and forward-thinking when the fleet needed it, I hereby promote you to the fleet rank of REAR ADMIRAL.

Congratulations Rear Admiral.

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Lieutenant Commander Russell Elsom is a newbie by the standards of many mentioned above. He has recently taken on the role of XO of the USS Hyperion because he has shown a fantastic ability to write and lead. He was one of the crew members on the USS Cambrian who helped her towards her end and has not been mentioned for his actions. Until now. Even now, in his new role aboard the Hyperion, Russell jumped into the position and continued as if nothing had actually happened, he went out of his way to get to know the players aboard, JPing with them and helping the even newer players along the way. His writing is far superior to my own (which, I admit, is not hard!) and he continues to create fantastic twists and turns in every plot line. He thinks positively and logically and will make one fine commanding officer in the future. For his continued efforts and dedication to the Fleet as a whole and to the aforementioned USS Cambrian and to the USS Hyperion, I hereby promote Lieutenant Commander Elsom to the rank of COMMANDER.

There are so many others worthy of mention and achievement, but I don't want to take the honour away from your COs/XOs.

PERSONAL GREETINGS AND MEMORIES
Commodore Mark Hyacynth, CO USS Ariadne would like to express his appreciation to the fleet and all the players therein...
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Seven years…it really does not seem that long.

I have to say that my seventh year in this organization has been quite the tumultuous one. I lost my job but found out that it wasn’t the end of the world. Quite the contrary it forced me to take a look at all aspects of my life. Sixth Fleet included in this. I never realized the impact of this organization on my mental wellbeing until then.

It led me to discover the truth of the friendships I had made over the years. The strength of the bond created by this genre and universe that we love called “Star Trek”. Most of all it gave me no small amount of strength, as I perceived the walls closing in. Some of you might recall a memo I sent out announcing the change of the Oberon Simulation to the new Ariadne Simulation. This too came as a result of the friendship and support of my Sixth Fleet friends.

This change has also emboldened me to start my own business. Yes, a daunting task but one that I have decided I must try for my family and myself. Was Sixth Fleet responsible for this drastic move? You bet it was! As much as I discussed this with friends and family, many conversations with my “Sixth Fleet Family” bolstered my confidence.

So I want to take a moment to thank the organization for giving me a wonderful seven years. To my Sixth Fleet Family, you know who you are, my deepest gratitude for your strength, love, and support during this trying time. I look to the future now and there is light.

Happy 7th Anniversary, Sixth Fleet!

With my deepest thanks,

Commodore Mark Hyacinth
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Thank you, Commodore, your words are greatly received by all and, no doubt, reflected by all.

POST OF THE YEAR (POTY) COMPETITION

It has been decided as part of our 7th year anniversary, the fleet will hold a Post Of The Year competition. The process will run exactly like individual Post of the Month competitions, that the oldies will remember from days of yore, but will encompass all simulations for the period of the next 6 months.

This is open to EVERY player and EVERY player will have a vote and the winning post will be announced at our 7.5 anniversary in October 2013.

All you need do is keep writing fantastic posts and reading fantastic posts. Recommend a great post to your CO/XO team who will log it over the course of the next few months and then have a mini vote on individual simulations. The winning post will then be entered into the POTY Fleet competition where EVERY PLAYER will be able to vote for their favourite post from each simulation.

There will be some basic rules nearer the time, but just keep your eyes peeled for that outstanding post or posts, even if it is yours :P There will be more information about this in due course.

COMMENTS WELCOME
It would be nice if players were to comment on their thoughts about what Sixth Fleet means to them. Just log onto http://fnn.sixth-fleet.com and add your comment, alternatively, send your comments to fnn@sixth-fleet.com and the team will ensure they are posted for you.

And now, it remains for me to just say, to all Sixth Fleeters everywhere...

Happy 7th Birthday and here's to the future!

Nigel Gillson, Commodore