Midlothian native serves aboard Navy’s most advanced submarine

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By Rick Burke / Navy Office of Community Outreach

KINGS BAY, Ga. – A 2006 Ridgeway High School graduate in Memphis, Tenn. and University of Texas at Arlington college graduate and Midlothian native is serving in the U.S. Navy as part of a crew working aboard one of the world’s most advanced ballistic missile submarines, USS Tennessee.

Petty Officer 2nd Class Arun Mohan, an electronics techinican (nuclear), serves aboard the Kings Bay-based boat, one of 14 Ohio-class ballistic missile submarines. Photo courtesy U.S. Navy.

Petty Officer 2nd Class Arun Mohan, an electronics techinican (nuclear), serves aboard the Kings Bay-based boat, one of 14 Ohio-class ballistic missile submarines.

As an electronics techinican, Mohan, is responsible for safely performing maintenance on nuclear equipment at shore and at sea and additonally, responsible for training new sailors to operate and perform maintenance to ensure the boat is always mission-ready.

“I like the fact that this job is pretty high-profile and challenging to work with multiple systems and equipment, while ensuring that there is no conflicts with ship operations,” said Mohan.

The Navy’s ballistic missile submarines, often referred to as “boomers,” serve as undetectable launch platforms for intercontinental ballistic missiles. They are designed specifically for stealth, extended patrols and the precise delivery of missiles, and they are the only survivable leg of the nation’s strategic nuclear forces, which also include land-based missiles and aircraft. 

The Ohio-class design allows the submarines to operate for 15 or more years between major overhauls.

According to Navy officials, submarine sailors are some of the most highly trained and skilled people in the Navy.

The training is highly technical and each crew has to be able to operate, maintain, and repair every system or piece of equipment on board.

Regardless of their specialty, everyone also has to learn how everything on the ship works and how to respond in emergencies to become “qualified in submarines” and earn the right to wear the coveted gold or silver dolphins on their uniform.

“We demand the highest standards from our sailors - both professionally and personally,” said Rear Adm. Randy Crites, commander, Submarine Group 10 in Kings Bay. 

USS Tennessee is an Ohio-class ballistic missile submarine. Photo courtesy U.S. Navy.

“Their chain of command, family and our great nation take immense pride in their devotion and service. These sailors are absolutely crucial to ensuring our ships and submarines are operating at their best - always mission ready, providing our nation with the greatest Navy the world has ever known. I’m so very proud these sailors are on our team.”

“I like how I am a part of various missions and operations vital to national security,” said Mohan.

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

“When I graduated from college and enlisted in the Navy, it’s taught me to be more responsible, a better leader both professionally and personally,” said Mohan. “It has also improved my confidence to speak among  large groups.”

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