A Buckeye native serves in the US Navy aboard the USS New Hampshire, one of the most advanced nuclear submarines in the world.
Petty Officer 3rd Class Hernan Hernandez, who graduated from Verrado High School in 2011, joined the Navy two years ago.
“I joined to have career opportunities and to travel,” Hernandez said. “I am happy to have a woman who supports me and who also wants to see the world.”
According to Hernandez, the values required to be successful in the military are similar to those found in Buckeye.
“I’ve learned to keep my head down and work on it, to stay humble, and effort will always help you be successful,” Hernandez said.
Fast, manoeuvrable and technically advanced, submarines are among the Navy’s most versatile ships, capable of silently carrying out a variety of missions around the world.
There are three main types of submarines: fast attack submarines (SSN), guided missile submarines (SSBN), and guided missile submarines (SSGN).
Fast attack submarines are designed to track down and destroy enemy submarines and surface ships; hitting targets on the ground with cruise missiles; transport and deliver Navy SEALs; carry out intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance missions; and engage in mine warfare. Their main tactical advantage is stealth, operating undetected under the sea for long periods of time.
The Navy’s guided-missile submarines, often referred to as “boomers,” serve as a strategic deterrent by providing an undetectable platform for ballistic missiles launched by submarines. SSBNs are designed specifically for stealth, extended patrols, and precise missile delivery. Their design allows submarines to operate for 15 years or more between major overhauls.
Missile submarines provide the Navy with unprecedented strike and special ops capabilities from a stealth and clandestine platform. Armed with tactical missiles and equipped with superior communication capabilities, SSGNs are able to directly support the combat commander’s strike and the needs of special operations forces. Each SSGN can carry 154 Tomahawk cruise missiles, plus a complement of heavy torpedoes to fire through four torpedo tubes.
Serving in the Navy means that Hernandez is part of a world that takes on new significance in the United States’ focus on rebuilding military readiness, strengthening alliances, and reforming business practices at support for the national defense strategy.
“It is important to protect the freedom of the seas and to have a deterrent effect on other military threats at sea and in other coastal waters,” Hernandez said.
With more than 90% of all trade passing by sea and 95% of the world’s international telephone and internet traffic passing through fiber-optic cables lying on the ocean floor, Navy officials continue to stress that United States prosperity and security are directly linked to a strong and ready Navy.
“What our submarine forces accomplish every day is vitally important to the defense of our country,” said Vice-Admiral Daryl Caudle, Commander of the Submarine Forces. “Our submarine force is an essential part of global maritime security and the country’s nuclear triad. Every day our submariners are at spearhead, forward deployed and ready – from the depths we strike. “
As a member of the US Navy, Hernandez, along with other Sailors, know they are part of a tradition of service delivering unforgettable experiences through leadership development, global affairs and humanitarian assistance. . Their efforts will have a lasting effect around the world and for generations of seafarers to follow.
“I wouldn’t trade the camaraderie for the world,” Hernandez added. “The challenges and unique experiences are like no other, and I’m happy to have people who can relate to them.”