By Rick Burke, Navy Office of Community Outreach
A Brandon native is serving aboard USS Iwo Jima, a U.S. Navy Wasp-class amphibious assault ship.
Airman Miguel Fernandezsilva is a 2019 graduate of Spoto High School in Riverview. Today, Fernandezsilva serves as a Navy aviation boatswain’s mate responsible for launching and recovering aircraft on ships.
According to Fernandezsilva, who joined the Navy one year ago, the values required to succeed in the military are similar to those found in Brandon.
“My work experience has helped me be a leader in the Navy,” said Fernandezsilva. “I really enjoy the people that I work with.”
Iwo Jima is the seventh Wasp-class amphibious assault ship and the second ship in the U.S. Navy to bear that name. The ship was named for the Battle of Iwo Jima of World War II.
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 Cushions, as well as conventional landing craft and assault vehicles in various combinations.
Though there are many opportunities for sailors to earn recognition in their command, community and careers, Fernandezsilva is most proud of earning the qualifications needed to excel at his job.
As a member of the U.S. Navy, Fernandezsilva, 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.
“Serving in the Navy means making the ultimate sacrifice for your country,” added Fernandezsilva.
To learn more, visit American Connections Media Outreach, which shares sailors’ stories through local connections, at https://navyoutreach.blogspot.com.