Longview Native Supports Versatile Missions While Serving With U.S. Navy Helicopter Squadrondfwnewsa | October 20, 2023 | 0 | East Texas News
By Lt. Cmdr. Courtney Williams, Navy Office of Community Outreach
Officer 3rd Class Kellen Taylor, a native of Longview, Texas, serves the U.S. Navy assigned to a helicopter squadron operating out of Norfolk, Virginia.
The skills and values needed to succeed in the Navy are similar to those found in Longview, Texas.
“I grew up where family comes first, no matter the struggle,” said Taylor. “Family will always be there for strength and support. That sort of sentiment rings true in the Navy as well, where we need each other to get through those rough days, to listen and to laugh, to encourage and reassure.”
Taylor joined the Navy two years ago. Today, Taylor serves as a logistics specialist with Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC) 28.
“I’m an Army brat through and through,” said Taylor. “My mom is an Army veteran and my stepfather retired from the Army. Both of my brothers serve in the U.S. Coast Guard; older brother is a veteran, and my younger brother is currently active duty. So based on a sense of service and familial ties, I was bound to wear the uniform as well.”
Members of HSC-28 fly and maintain the Navy’s MH-60S Knighthawk helicopter. Navy helicopters are able to perform many different missions. In general, some of the most common operations include search and rescue, air assaults, medical evacuations, supply transport and hunting submarines.
This year commemorates 50 years of women flying in the U.S. Navy. In 1973, the first eight women began flight school in Pensacola, Florida. Six of them, known as “The First Six,” earned their “Wings of Gold” one year later. Over the past 50 years, the Navy has expanded its roles for women to lead and serve globally and today our women aviators project power from the sea in every type of Navy, Marine Corps and Coast Guard aircraft. According to Navy officials, our nation and our Navy are stronger because of their service.
Serving in the Navy means Taylor is part of a team that is taking on new importance in America’s focus on rebuilding military readiness, strengthening alliances and reforming business practices in support of the National Defense Strategy.
“It’s important to make any mission successful whether in the air, on sea or land,” said Taylor. “I’m honored to work in a field that keeps missions moving forward in any Navy environment.”
With 90% of global commerce traveling by sea and access to the internet relying on the security of undersea fiber optic cables, Navy officials continue to emphasize that the prosperity of the United States is directly linked to trained sailors and a strong Navy.
Taylor has many opportunities to achieve accomplishments during military service.
“I have progressed quickly since joining the Navy and was promoted to a third class in less than two years,” said Taylor. “I attribute that to hard work, amazing mentors, and being part of a high visibility team tasked with a top priority assignment.”
As Taylor and other sailors continue to train and perform missions, they take pride in serving their country in the U.S. Navy.
“It’s now my turn,” said Taylor. “I’ve seen many of my family members serve and protect, now it’s my moment.”
Taylor is grateful to others for helping make a Navy career possible.
“My mom and dad have been there for me with endless support every step of the way,” added Taylor. “I enjoy my weekly calls with my parents, particularly on a tough day just talking with my dad about sports can surely brighten my mood.”
Cover photo by Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Patricia Elkins, Navy Office of Community Outreach
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