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Cabarrus Magazine

Kannapolis Native Serves in the U.S. Navy Aboard Submarine Tender

Nov 10, 2016 10:08PM ● By Melanie Heisinger
By Lt. Cmdr. Gus T. Hein, Navy Office of Community Outreach 

A 2005 A.L. Brown High School graduate and Kannapolis, North Carolina native is serving in the U.S. Navy as part of an integrated crew of sailors and civilian mariners working aboard the expeditionary submarine tender, USS Emory S. Land.

Ensign Jason Waller serves in Guam as part of a forward deployed naval force in the Pacific.

He is responsible for writing the technical requirements for submarine repairs as well as working to certify the work once it is completed.

“Knowing that I help keep submarine sailors serving at sea safely is what really motivates me,” said Waller.
“Guam sailors are located at our nation’s most strategically important forward-deployed submarine base, and the missions they conduct at the tip of the spear are incredible,” said Capt. David Schappert, Commander, Submarine Squadron 15. “They are constantly challenged and continually rise to meet and exceed expectations. Guam is the place to be for submariners, and we have the ‘Go Guam!’ initiative to showcase all the great things we do out here.”

With a crew of 41 officers and 650 enlisted, submarine tenders are 649 feet long and weigh approximately 23,347 tons. A steam-powered propulsion system helps push submarine tenders through the water at nearly 21 mph.

“The sailors aboard Emory S. Land continue to exceed all expectations while supporting submarines and surface ships in the 5th and 7th Fleet area of operations,” said Capt. Mark Prokopius, commanding officer of USS Emory S. Land. “Their hard work and professionalism makes me proud of each and every one of them.”

Sailors aboard submarine tenders support deployed submarines as well as surface combatant ships.

"These sailors continue to impress me with the level of effort and expertise they put into successfully completing their mission day-in and day-out," Rear Adm. Frederick Roegge, Commander, Submarine Force, U.S. Pacific Fleet, said. "Their actions and dedication to service enables the Submarine Force to excel in the undersea domain."

“Serving aboard this ship means living a lifestyle with great responsibility to ensure the safety of my family and friends back home,” said Waller.

The integrated crew of sailors and civilian mariners builds a strong fellowship while working alongside each other, Waller explained.  The crews are highly motivated, and quickly adapt to changing conditions.  It is a busy life of specialized work, watches and drills.

“I am proud to wear the uniform of the United States Navy and glad to carry on a long tradition of fighting men at sea,” Waller added.

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