BYRON (Community ) – Byron native and 2007 Byron High School grad, Petty Officer Daniel Rambow, is serving in the U.S. Navy as part of a crew working aboard one of the world’s most advanced ballistic missile submarines, the USS Alaska.
The Navy’s ballistic missile submarines, often referred to as “boomers,” serve as an undetectable launch platform for intercontinental ballistic missiles. They are designed specifically for stealth, extended patrols and the precise delivery of missiles if directed by the President. The Ohio-class design allows the submarines to operate for 15 or more years between major overhauls. On average, the submarines spend 77 days at sea followed by 35 days in-port for maintenance.
Petty Officer Rambow is a machinist aboard the boat, based in Kings Bay, Georgia. He is part of the submarine’s Blue crew, one of the two rotating crews, which allow the ship to be deployed on missions more often without taxing one crew too much. A typical crew on the submarine is approximately 150 officers and enlisted Sailors.
Because of the stressful environment aboard submarines, personnel are accepted only after rigorous testing and observation. Submariners 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.
“The thing I like most about working on submarines compared to the rest of the fleet is I am required to know a little bit about everything. I get to have my hands in just about all aspects of the operational readiness of the boat – planning, testing and executing the mission,” Rambow said.
Although it is difficult for most people to imagine living on a submarine, challenging submarine living conditions actually build strong fellowship among the crew. The crews are highly motivated, and quickly adapt to changing conditions. It is a busy life of specialized work, watches, and drills.
“When I first joined the Navy, I was excited about all the initial aspects of the job, but now I get to help those under me, teaching and training the new Sailors in my division – that reward in itself motivates me to come to work every day. Both of my grandfathers and two of my uncles, as well as my twin brother, were (or are) all in Navy,” Rambow added.
“We demand the highest standards from Petty Officer Rambow, technically and personally,” said Rear Admiral Charles A. Richard, commander, Submarine Group Ten in Kings Bay, Ga. “His Commanding Officer, his country, and I take great pride in his willingness to raise his hand and volunteer to serve the nation. The importance of our Sailors is immeasurable; people like Petty Officer Rambow are crucial to ensuring our submarines are operating at their best and the mission is flawlessly executed. I’m so very proud he is on our team.”