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South Effingham graduate serves aboard amphibious assault ship
Michael Brown
Petty Officer 3rd Class Michael Brown - photo by Image submitted

By Mass Communications Specialist 1st Class Bryan Niegel  

Navy Office of Community Outreach

MILLINGTON, Tenn. - A Savannah, Georgia, native is serving aboard USS Essex, a U.S. Navy Wasp class amphibious assault ship.

Petty Officer 3rd Class Michael Brown is a 2013 South Effingham High School graduate and in 2018 earn a degree from Savannah State University. Today, Brown serves as a Navy boatswain's mate.

"As a boatswain's mate we perform a mix of things including rigging, refueling ships at sea and amphibious operations," said Brown.

Brown joined the Navy four years ago.

“I joined the Navy to support my amazing family and serve my country,” said Brown.

According to Brown, the values required to succeed in the military are similar to those found in Savannah.

"Growing up in Savannah, I learned patience, caring for others and a hard work ethic," said Brown.

Homeported in San Diego, California, USS Essex is the second ship in the Wasp-class of multipurpose amphibious assault ships and the fifth ship named for Essex County, Massachusetts. Essex was a 1,000-ton ironclad river gunboat of the U.S. Army and later U.S. Navy during the American Civil War.

According to Navy officials, amphibious assault ships are designed to deliver U.S. Marines and their equipment where they are needed to support a variety of missions ranging from amphibious assaults to humanitarian relief efforts. Designed to be versatile, the ship has the option of simultaneously using helicopters, Harrier jets, and Landing Craft Air Cushioned, as well as conventional landing craft and assault vehicles in various combinations.

"My favorite part about serving aboard USS Essex is the opportunity to lead others in high risk evolutions all while bettering myself," said Brown.

Though there are many opportunities for sailors to earn recognition in their command, community and careers, Brown is most proud of qualify as a Master Helmsman.

As a member of the U.S. Navy, Brown, as well as other sailors, know they are a part of a service tradition providing unforgettable experiences through leadership development, world affairs and humanitarian assistance. Their efforts will have a lasting effect around the globe and for generations of sailors who will follow.

"To me, serving in the Navy means doing my part in keeping the international trade routes open," added Brown.