GROTON, Connecticut – A native of Clifton Park, he served in the US Navy at Naval Submarine Base New London, supporting the most advanced nuclear submarines in the world.
Petty Officer 3rd Class John Kennedy, a 2018 Shenendehowa High School graduate, joined the Navy two and a half years ago. Today, Kennedy is a diver in the Navy.
âI joined the Navy because I wanted to help people,â Kennedy said.
âThe Navy protects everyone by doing the job that others don’t want to do,â Kennedy explained.
According to Kennedy, the values âârequired to be successful in the military are similar to those found at Clifton Park.
âGrowing up, my mom always told me not to give up on things just because they are difficult,â Kennedy noted.
âThis lesson helped me overcome the difficult academic and physical demands that are necessary to be selected as a Navy diver,â Kennedy added.
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 hunt 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 specially designed for stealth, extended patrols and precise missile delivery. Their design allows submarines to operate for 15 years or more between major overhauls. On average, submarines spend 77 days at sea followed by 35 days in port for maintenance.
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 is capable of carrying 154 Tomahawk cruise missiles, as well as a complement of heavy torpedoes to be fired through four torpedo tubes.
Serving in the Navy means Kennedy 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.
âAs a member of the Navy, I know we are doing everything we can to keep all the bad things out,â Kennedy said.
“We are doing the dirty work to keep our country safe,” Kennedy noted.
With more than 90% of all trade 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 the United States prosperity and security are directly linked to a strong and ready Navy.
âWhat our submarine forces accomplish every day is of vital importance to the defense of our country,â said Vice-Admiral Daryl Caudle, Commander of the Submarine Forces.
âOur submarine force is an essential part of global maritime security and the country’s nuclear triad. Every day our submariners are on spearhead, forward deployed and ready – from the depths we strike! Caudle added.
As a member of the US Navy, Kennedy, 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.
âServing in the Navy means everything to me,â Kennedy said.
âEver since I was a kid I knew I wanted to serve, and now I can live that dream,â Kennedy added.