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Admirable admiral visits SV students

Jonathan Greenert, a Butler native and four-star Navy admiral, visits fifth-graders at Ehrman Crest Elementary/Middle School in Cranberry Township on Friday morning. Greenert handed out coins from around the world when shaking hands with students who had asked him a question. He gave a presentation to second-graders in the afternoon. PAULA GRUBBS/BUTLER EAGLE

CRANBERRY TWP — Jonathan Greenert, a four-star Navy admiral who survived the Sept. 11, 2001, attack on the Pentagon, has traveled to 60 or 70 locations worldwide, and holds enough Navy medals to hold down a copy of “War and Peace.”

But Greenert, who was appointed by President Barack Obama in 2011 as the 30th Chief of Naval Operations, had one message for the fifth-graders he addressed Friday at Ehrman Crest Elementary/Middle School.

“You know who I really am?” said the affable admiral. “I’m a kid from Butler.”

Greenert told the students he grew up on Walnut Street in Butler and attended St. Paul’s Catholic School, now known as Butler Catholic School.

After graduating from Butler High School, he was accepted into the Naval Academy in Annapolis, Md., where he learned what an admiral is, because he was required to memorize naval ranks.

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