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Lebanon native serves aboard USS Germantown in Japan

Staff Reports • Updated May 28, 2016 at 2:00 PM

By Spc. James Green

Navy Office of Public Affairs

SASEBO, Japan – A 2013 Lebanon High School graduate and Lebanon native serves in Japan in the U.S. Navy aboard the USS Germantown, one of two forward deployed dock landing ships.

Petty Officer 3rd Class Tyler Wilson is an information systems technician aboard the Whidbey Island-class dock landing ship operating out of Sasebo, Japan.

A Navy information systems technician is responsible for ensuring that all data and security networks on the ship are fully operational.

“The best part of my job is the different challenges presented each day,” said Wilson. “It allows you to wake up and learn something new every day.”

With more than 50 percent of the world’s shipping tonnage and a third of the world’s crude oil passing through the region, the United States has historic and enduring interests in this part of the world.  The Navy’s presence in Sasebo is part of that long-standing commitment.

Commissioned in 1986, Germantown is the second Whidbey Island-class dock landing ship. This is the second Navy ship named after the Revolutionary War Battle of Germantown.

With a crew of more than 900 sailors and Marines, Germantown is 609 feet long and weighs about 16,000 tons. Designed specifically to operate landing craft air cushion small craft vessels, Whidbey Island-class dock landing ships have the largest capacity for these landing craft out of any U.S. Navy amphibious ship.

“Today’s sailors never cease to amaze me with the energy and effort they give, particularly in the fast-paced forward deployed Navy,” said Cmdr. Severn B. Stevens III, Commanding Officer of USS Germantown. “Their endless dedication to excellence, while at work and on liberty, makes me proud to be in command of Germantown and this crew.”

Germantown sailors work rigorous hours filled with drills and training to assure that the ship remains mission ready. Their efforts were recently validated by earning the 2015 Battle Effectiveness Award with a clean sweep of all five command excellence awards.

“Since we are forward deployed, we are the first responders for any crisis in the region,” said Wilson. “We have to be ready at all times and have the ship ready to go.”

Navy officials explain that sea duty is inherently difficult and challenging, but it builds strong fellowship and esprit de corps among members of the crew. The crew is highly motivated and quickly adapts to changing conditions. It is a busy life of specialized work, watches and drills.

“Serving in the Navy gives you a sense of pride that you have become part of a unique brotherhood,” said Wilson.

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