A 2012 New Haven High School graduate and New Haven native is serving in the U.S. Navy aboard the guided missile destroyer, USS Carney.
Petty Officer 3rd Class John Carey is a sonar technician (surface) aboard the forward-deployed Arleigh Burke-class guided missile destroyer operating out of Rota, Spain.
Carney is one of four destroyers homeported in Rota.
A Navy sonar technician is responsible for operating and maintaining underwater sensors and weapons.
“I’m constantly learning new things and I like the challenge of learning new and complex things,” said Carey.
Commissioned in June 1996, the Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer, Carney, measures approximately 500 feet and is powered by four gas turbines that allow the destroyer to achieve over 30 mph in open seas. It was named in honor of former Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Robert Carney.
This ship has been fitted with the Aegis ballistic missile defense (BMD) capability that enables the ship to conduct long-range surveillance, tracking, and engagement of short and medium-range ballistic missiles.
According to Navy officials, destroyers are tactical multi-mission surface combatants capable of conducting antiair warfare, antisubmarine warfare and anti-surface warfare, as well as humanitarian assistance.
Fast, maneuverable, and technically advanced, destroyers provide the required warfighting expertise and operational flexibility to execute any tasking overseas.
Assigned to U.S. 6th Fleet, sailors are on watch throughout the European region and are important assets supporting the European Phased Adaptive Approach to enhance the security of that area of the world from ballistic missile threats originating in the Middle East.
In addition to Carney, three other BMD capable ships are forwarded deployed in Rota: USS Porter, USS Donald Cook and USS Ross. Having four destroyers based in Rota gives the U.S. 6th Fleet flexibility to send these ships to a variety of locations for a range of missions, while at the same time providing a large umbrella of protection for European allies.
Approximately 30 officers and 300 enlisted men and women make up the ship’s company.
“This ship has a great crew,” said Carey. “Plus, being in Spain and experiencing different cultures and people is a lot of fun.”
Challenging living conditions build strong fellowship among the crew, Navy officials explained. The crew is highly motivated, and quickly adapt to changing conditions. It is a busy life of specialized work, watches, and drills.
As a member of one of the U.S. Navy’s most relied upon assets, Carey explained that he and other Carney sailors know they are part of a legacy that will last beyond their lifetimes.
“By serving in the Navy, I’m part of something bigger than myself and it’s hard to understand that until you’re in it,” added Carey.
While on patrol, Carney conducted ballistic missile defense, anti-submarine warfare, and theater security cooperation missions.
He visited Haifa, Israel, in February 2016. While in Israel, Carney hosted the Israeli minister of defense and the United States ambassador to Israel for a ship tour and joint press conference.
The following month, he visited Palma De Mallorca, Spain. While in Spain, sailors conducted a community relations project at a local animal shelter.
Carney’s participation in combined underway tactical exchanges with allies and regional partners helped the United States continue its efforts to strengthen maritime partnerships throughout Europe.
Carney is the last of four Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyers to be forward deployed in theater.
He is now scheduled to begin a Chief of Naval Operations Selected Restricted Availability, focused on modernization in preparation for subsequent patrols in the U.S. 6th Fleet.