Los Alamos native supports US Navy Hawkeye aircraft | Vandenberg / Military

Los Alamos Chief Petty Officer Robert Palmer is serving with the United States Navy as part of his assignment to the 120th Airborne Command and Control Squadron, which supports the E-2D airborne early warning aircraft, known as Hawkeye.

Palmer, who joined the Navy 20 years ago, is currently an aviation machinist’s second in command.

“Both of my parents were in the Navy, and we have a lot of military in my family,” he said. “I wanted to go do something exciting.”

Growing up in Los Alamos, Palmer attended Righetti High School and graduated in 2001.

He said he relies on skills and values ​​— similar to those found at Los Alamos — to succeed in the military.

“Growing up in Los Alamos, I learned the importance of a strong work ethic. My mother’s family owned land that was once a 27-acre dairy ranch,” Palmer explained. “We had a small orchard and tended the land, so hard work was something I learned early in life.”

These lessons helped Palmer in his naval career.

The E-2D Advanced Hawkeye recently celebrated the 15th anniversary of its first flight, which took place on August 3, 2007.

Known as the Navy’s “digital quarterback”, the Hawkeye gives the warfighter extensive awareness of the battlespace, and its command and control capability makes it a multi-mission platform with its ability to coordinate simultaneous missions such as airborne strike, ground force support, rescue operations and counter-drug operations support.

The Hawkeye is one of the aircraft launched from an aircraft carrier.

Navy aircraft carriers are designed for a service life of 50 years. When the air wing is embarked, the ship carries more than 70 attack fighter jets, helicopters and other aircraft, which take off and land aboard the aircraft carrier at sea. With more than 5,000 sailors serving on board, the aircraft carrier is an autonomous mobile airport.

Aircraft carriers are often the first response to a global crisis due to their ability to operate freely in international waters anywhere on the world’s oceans.

Since the commissioning of the USS Langley 100 years ago, the nation’s carriers and carrier air wings have projected power, maintained control of the seas, enhanced deterrence, provided humanitarian assistance and disaster relief, and maintained enduring commitments around the world.


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“The aircraft carrier is the centerpiece of our United States Navy, our flagship, and a constant reminder to the rest of the world of our enduring maritime presence and influence,” said Program Director Rear Admiral James P. Downey. for aircraft carriers. “These ships touch every part of our navy’s mission to project power, provide control of the seas and deter our adversaries.”

Serving in the Navy means Palmer is part of a team that takes on new importance in the United States’ focus on building alliances, modernizing capabilities, increasing capabilities and maintaining readiness. military in support of national defense strategy.

“He who owns the sea owns the power,” Palmer said. “Power at sea dates back thousands of years. Power projection and force projection are the most important elements of national security.”

With more than 90% of all trade traveling by sea and 95% of global voice and internet traffic carried by fiber optic cables lying on the ocean floor, Navy officials continue to stress the importance accelerate America’s advantage at sea.

“Maintaining the best navy in the world is an investment in the security and prosperity of the United States, as well as the stability of our world,” said Admiral Mike Gilday, Chief of Naval Operations. “The United States Navy – forward deployed and integrated with all elements of national power – prevents conflict, strengthens our alliances and partnerships, and ensures free and open access to the world’s oceans.

“As the United States responds to the security environment with integrated deterrence, our Navy must continue to deploy and campaign with a combat-ready, capable, and credible fleet,” Gilday said.

Palmer and the sailors with whom he serves have many opportunities to fulfill during their military service.

“What I enjoy most about my military career is the opportunity to mentor others,” Palmer said. “I like to see others succeed.”

As Palmer and other Sailors continue to train and fly missions, they are proud to serve their country in the United States Navy.

“Serving in the Navy lets me know I’ve accomplished something in my life,” Palmer added. “I learned a lot about how we can behave. I’m proud of who I am, what I’ve done and where I’m going.”


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