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Copiague Native Serves Aboard a Floating Airport at Sea

A Copiague, New York, native and 2006 Saint John the Baptist Diocesan High School graduate is serving in the U.S. Navy aboard the aircraft carrier USS Theodore Roosevelt, which recently returned from a 7-month deployment.
Petty Officer 3rd Class Kimberly Ferrari is a quartermaster aboard the carrier operating out of San Diego. A Navy quartermaster is responsible for the safe navigation of the ship.

Ferrari credits success in the Navy to many of the lessons learned growing up in Copiague.

“Growing up, I was taught to follow your dreams,” said Ferrari. “I always wanted to serve in the military. I am glad I finally have the opportunity to serve.”

The crew spent the deployment supporting Operations Inherent Resolve and Freedom’s Sentinel, as well as maritime security cooperation efforts in the Arabian Gulf and Pacific Ocean.

The ship transited more than 56,000 miles, and made five port calls in four different countries, to include the United Arab Emirates, the Kingdom of Bahrain, the Republic of Singapore, and the Republic of the Philippines, as well as port calls in Hawaii and Guam.

“During deployment, I was able to travel around the world,” said Ferrari. “I was able to gain more leadership skills because I made rank, which allowed me to oversee the seaman that were in my department.”

Named in honor of former President Theodore Roosevelt, 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.

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, Ferrari learns about life at sea serving in the Navy and the importance of taking personal responsibility while leading others.

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 the aircraft aboard the ship.

“What Rough Riders have accomplished during this deployment was truly inspirational,” said Capt. Carlos Sardiello, commanding officer Theodore Roosevelt. “Earning the privilege to be called the best one day at a time; every sailor and Marine made what is very difficult look easy. We are immensely proud of the hard work and dedication that was exhibited as well as the sacrifices of the families.”

Theodore Roosevelt, 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 Theodore Roosevelt 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.

As a member of one of the U.S. Navy’s most relied upon assets, Ferrari and other Theodore Roosevelt sailors know they are part of a legacy that will last beyond their lifetimes providing the Navy the nation needs.

“Serving in the Navy means giving back to my country,” added Ferrari. “It means being an example for others.”

About the Author

New York Trend is a weekly news publication that focuses on issues and lifestyles of the African & Caribbean American communities throughout the New York metropolitan area and Nassau and Suffolk Counties of Long Island. It is a respected and well recognized news publication that has been in existence since 1989. Owner, Publisher and Executive Director, Dr. Teresa Taylor Williams has been at the helm of this award-winning publication since its inception. New York Trend continues to be the only black woman-owned, metropolitan newspaper in New York and Long island. New York Trend is the largest black-owned newspaper throughout Nassau and Suffolk counties.

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