Exeter native serves on board USS Antietam

Wednesday, September 9, 2020
Gas Turbine Systems Technician (Electrical) 3rd Class Parker Fuller, of Exeter, reads through an engineering operational sequencing system aboard the Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser USS Antietam (CG 54). Antietam is forward deployed to the U.S. 7th Fleet area of operations in support of security and stability in the Indo-Pacific. Contributed photo

 An Exeter native and 2019 Exeter High School graduate is serving in the U.S. Navy aboard the guided-missile cruiser, USS Antietam.

Petty Officer 3rd Class Parker Fuller is a Gas Turbine Systems Technician (Electrical) aboard the forward-deployed Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser USS Antietam operating out of Yokosuka, Japan. Antietam is one of three cruisers forward-deployed to Yokosuka.

Approximately 450 men and women serve aboard the ship. Their jobs are highly specialized and keep each part of the destroyer running smoothly, according to Navy officials. They do everything from maintaining gas turbine engines and operating the highly sophisticated Aegis weapons system to driving the ship and operating small boats.

A Gas Turbine Systems Technician (Electrical) is responsible for the maintenance and operation of electrical propulsion plants, which provide warships with the power it needs for mission-critical systems. 

“We maintain the functionality and operability of the ship’s electrical propulsion plants,” Wilson said. “Essentially, we give the ship its power.”

With more than 50 percent of the world’s shipping tonnage and a third of the world’s crude oil passing through the region, the United States has historic and enduring interests in this part of the world.

Forward-deployed Sailors are crucial to the success of the global navy mission and earn high praise from their leaders.

“I like fixing stuff and being part of a team that fixes stuff,” Fuller said. “I learn something new every day.” 

Sailors serving abroad in Japan are highly motivated and quickly adapt to changing conditions, explained Navy officials.

“Japan is a great cultural experience,” Fuller said. “It is an honor to be here.” 

Modern U.S. Navy guided-missile cruisers perform primarily in a Battle Force role. These ships are multi-mission Air Warfare (AW), Undersea Warfare (USW), Naval Surface Fire Support (NSFS) and Surface Warfare (SUW) surface combatants capable of supporting carrier battle groups, amphibious forces or operating independently and as flagships of surface action groups.

USS Antietam is forward-deployed to the U.S. 7th Fleet area of operations in support of security and stability and a free and open Indo-Pacific.

For more information on (ship) and other forward-deployed ships in Japan, people may visit https://www.facebook.com/CTF70.