Cocoa Native Seaman Jerrett Ferrell Serving Aboard Aircraft Carrier USS George H.W. Bush
By Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Steve Watterworth, U.S. Navy // March 23, 2018
2015 Edgewood Jr./Sr. High School graduate is mass communication specialist
NORFOLK, VIRGINIA – A Cocoa, Florida, native and 2015 Edgewood Jr./Sr. High School graduate is serving in the U.S. Navy aboard the aircraft carrier USS George H.W. Bush.
Seaman Jerrett Ferrell is a mass communication specialist aboard the carrier operating out of the Navy’s largest base.
As a mass communication specialist, Ferrell is responsible for telling the Navy’s story through photographic, journalistic and video media products.
“My favorite part of this command is the people I work with,” said Ferrell.
Named in honor of former President George H.W. Bush, the carrier is longer than three football fields, measuring nearly 1,100 feet. The ship, a true floating city, weighs more than 100,000 tons and has a flight deck that is 252 feet wide. Two nuclear reactors can push the ship through the water at more than 35 mph.
Powerful catapults slingshot the aircraft off the bow of the ship. The planes land aboard the carrier by snagging a steel cable with an arresting hook that protrudes from the rear of the aircraft.
As a sailor with numerous responsibilities, Ferrell learns about life at sea serving in the Navy and the importance of taking personal responsibility while leading others while still using lessons learned from their hometown.
“Communication is key to completion of any task,” said Ferrell.
Sailors’ jobs are highly varied aboard the carrier. Approximately 3,200 men and women make up the ship’s crew, which keeps all parts of the aircraft carrier running smoothly — this includes everything from washing dishes and preparing meals to handling weaponry and maintaining the nuclear reactors.
Another 2,500 men and women form the air wing responsible for flying and maintaining more than 70 aircraft aboard the ship.
George H.W. Bush, like each of the Navy’s aircraft carriers, is designed for a 50-year service life. When the air wing is embarked, the ship carries more than 70 attack jets, helicopters and other aircraft, all of which take off from and land aboard the carrier at sea.
All of this makes the George H.W. Bush a self-contained mobile airport and strike platform, and often the first response to a global crisis because of a carrier’s ability to operate freely in international waters anywhere on the world’s oceans.
“I am most proud of how far I’ve come since high school,” said Ferrell. “I have friends who wish they had made the same decision.”
As a member of one of the U.S. Navy’s most relied upon assets, Ferrell and other George H.W. Bush sailors know they are part of a legacy that will last beyond their lifetimes providing the Navy the nation needs.
“I’m taking care of myself and have become more responsible since joining the Navy,” added Ferrell.
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