A U.S. Navy sailor's life is many things. It's hard work; it's adventurous; it's time away from family; it's a lot of pride. Each member of the 5000 person team on the aircraft carrier USS Harry S. Truman plays a differing role. Collectively they strive for perfection each day because lives depend on it. Captain Nicholas Dienna says, "They're spectacular young men and women, and in this environment, which is a completely unforgiving environment to any mistake or error either human or mechanical watching them step up everyday and contribute is phenomenal."
Pennsylvania native Lamont Sewell is a 16 year Navy veteran. He oversees a crew of 55 sailors who maintain each piece of aircraft ground support equipment. "The phrase is 'there is no air support without the ground support'. So that's how key it is. After the airplanes fly and they come down they require us. It's a necessity for the ground support to be there, be ready, be on time operate efficiently so that the aircraft can get back up in the air and do the mission and take care of business."
And "taking care of business" in the hangar bay or on the flight deck is pretty much non-stop and high paced. From the carrier flight deck and airplane can be launched every 30 seconds and one can be landed about every 45 seconds. All those launches and landings means all the support personnel have to be on point and all the equipment has to be up to par. Felix Rivera of Lebanon enlisted in the Navy seven years ago. He's part of the supply team that gets any and all needed parts for the repair work. "I go in the system and I order it. When when I order it, it goes through the process where is goes to aviation supply. Aviation supply picks it up and brings it back to material control. Material control hands it over to me." Those parts are what allows the maintenance teams to keep everything up and running. "I take pride in the work I do. So knowing that I'm helping to complete a mission in that we have in front of us it makes me feel really good about it."
Ethan Miller is a 2008 graduate of Red Land High school in York County. He has a different role as a mass communications specialist. Miller says, "We're the graphic designers, the photographers, the videographers, the broadcasters for the Navy. Our job is to document the history of the Navy, gather intelligence and share the Navy's story with the rest of the world." Miller is part of the team that produces a newscast along with an on board newspaper. He helps tell the story about life in the Navy and life aboard the Truman through press releases sent nationwide. "There is nothing that you can really compare it to in your home life and I'm very proud!"
That pride is evident throughout the ship. From the flight deck to the hangar bay. Rivera says, "We are fighting the good fight. We're doing the best we can to make our families proud and to make other people's families proud, and to make America proud."