thumbnail_KUMMERLE_160404-N-YM440-159A 2007 Parker High School graduate and Parker, Arizona native is serving in the U.S. Navy aboard one of the Navy’s newest attack submarines, the USS North Carolina.

Seaman Logan Kummerle is an electronics technician (submarine, navigation) aboard the Pearl Harbor-based boat, one of only 12 Virginia-class attack submarines in the Navy’s fleet.  The Virginia class is comprised of the Navy’s newest and most advanced subs.

A Navy electronics technician is responsible for for repair and maintenance of the sub’s navigation systems.

“The guys I work with, they just make the job a lot better,” said Kummerle. “I am also lucky to be able to travel with this crew. We’ve been to South Korea, Japan, and Guam.”

With a crew of 130, this submarine is 377 feet long and weighs approximately 7,800 tons.  A nuclear-powered propulsion system helps push the submarine through the water at more than 25 mph.

Attack submarines are designed to hunt down and destroy enemy submarines and surface ships; strike targets ashore with cruise missiles; carry and deliver Navy SEALs; carry out intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance missions; and engage in mine warfare.  Their primary tactical advantage is stealth, operating undetected under the sea for long periods of time.

“Submarine sailors never cease to amaze me with their ability to complete complex missions in the world’s most challenging environments,” said Rear Adm. Fritz Roegge, Commander, Submarine Force, U.S. Pacific Fleet. “Continued U.S. undersea superiority is not possible without their dedication, expertise and professionalism.”

According to Navy officials, because of the demanding 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.

“It’s like serving with family, as cliched as that sounds,” said Kummerle. “Everyone onboard is awesome which makes it fun to be here.”

Challenging submarine living conditions actually build strong fellowship among the elite crew, Navy officials explained. The crews are highly motivated, and quickly adapt to changing conditions.  It is a busy life of specialized work, watches, and drills.

“To be part of something bigger than myself gives me a sense of pride and satisfaction, and that’s why I serve in the Navy,” Kummerle added.