Anchors aweigh to borough son Petty Officer Second Class Aaron Nudel, who is presently serving our nation and helping to deter nuclear war.
Nudel, a missile technician, is serving aboard one of the world’s most advanced ballistic-missile submarines, the USS Nebraska. Based at Naval Base Kitsap-Bangor in Washington, not far from Seattle, USS Nebraska is one of 14 Ohio-class ballistic missile submarines in the Navy’s fleet.
As a missile technician, Nudel is responsible for strategic deterrence and making sure the U.S. is safe against enemy attacks.
“I enjoy learning something new everyday and working with electronics,” said Nudel. “My favorite part of being a submariner is the level of expertise it takes to perform my job.”
Nudel draws from lessons he learned growing up in Brooklyn.
“I’ve learned being patient is key while working long hours and building a foundation for friendships,” said Nudel.
The Navy’s ballistic-missile submarines, often referred to informally as “boomers,” serve as undetectable launch platforms for intercontinental ballistic missiles. They are designed specifically for stealth, extended patrols, and the precise delivery of missiles, and they are the only survivable leg of the nation’s strategic nuclear forces.
As long as nuclear weapons remain in the hands of potential adversaries, Navy officials say, the nation’s nuclear forces must provide a credible deterrent to the threat of nuclear attack. The Navy’s continuous at-sea deployment of submarines like USS Nebraska provides the ability to mount an assured response.
As effective as the Ohio-class submarines have been over their decades-long lifetime, the fleet is aging, Navy officials say, with the oldest submarines now more than 30-years-old, well past their planned service lives. A new and effective successor is critical to national security, and the Navy is well into the process to design and field a more advanced ballistic-missile submarine, which will provide the necessary sea-based nuclear deterrence into the 2080s.
Submarine sailors are some of the most highly trained and skilled people in the Navy. The training is highly technical and each crew has to be able to operate, maintain, and repair every system or piece of equipment on board. Everyone also has to learn how everything on the submarine works and how to respond in emergencies to earn the right to wear the coveted gold or silver dolphins on their uniform.
“The men and women from across our nation who volunteer for military service embody the fundamental values of honor, courage and sacrifice that are the bedrock of our republic,” said Rear Adm. Blake Converse, Commander, Submarine Group Nine. “They protect and defend America from above, below, and across the world’s oceans. The entire nation should be extremely proud of the hard work that these sailors do every single day to support the critical mission of the Navy and the submarine force.”