A Sailor is Forged
Story by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class (SW) Kyle Hafer
U.S. Navy photos by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Zachary S. Eshleman
MILLINGTON, Tenn. – Patrick Smith has taken his first steps to becoming “Forged by the Sea.” The
18-year-old Covington native recently graduated from Covington High School and will be
shipping off to Navy Recruit Training Command in September of this year.
For Smith being “Forged by the Sea” means the Navy will mold him from a civilian to Sailor. It will give him the tools he needs to serve his country while securing a job, an education, and life experiences. The Navy’s new tagline, “Forged by the Sea,” also describes the Navy as an organization and as a team– forged and tempered over 242 years of history on the seas.
Smith is enlisting into one of the oldest Navy rates, the boatswain’s mate. Since there has been
a Navy, there have been boatswain’s mates. The seamanship duties of this historic rate include handling, anchoring and mooring evolutions, driving U.S. Navy ships and small boats and countless other duties that one would associate with “Sailor.”
“I chose the Navy over all other branches because the Navy was the one that appealed the
most to me,” said Smith. “The benefits and way of life seemed to be what I was looking for, and
all around it seemed like the best fit for me.” The Navy offers many educational and career opportunities as well as a chance to travel abroad while supporting the Navy’s mission in
maintaining security and deterrence.
It’s a recruiter’s job to find talented candidates who are eager and eligible to enlist. After
learning about Navy benefits and opportunities, Smith was ready to sign up. “I’ve had a great experience with my recruiter,” said Smith. “She has taught me to stay on track and don’t give up on what I’m going to set out to achieve; and to push through no matter how hard life gets.”
Smith has dreamed about traveling and seeing the world. He hopes that shipboard life will give
him an opportunity to visit places he’s seen on TV and see sights he has never imagined. “I am excited to be on a ship,” said Smith. “I am really anxious, like I really just can’t wait to get out there and experience the Navy and see the world.”
Patrick has lived in Covington all his life with his brother, Antwan, mother Patricia and step-
father Ernest Taylor. His family is very proud and excited to see the type of person the Navy will
shape and mold him into. Smith’s uncle spent 20 years in the Navy and has been a role model for him. His decision to join the Navy is based on his desire to build a Naval legacy of service starting with his uncle and continuing for generations. “My uncle is a retired Navy veteran and is a huge inspiration for me joining the Navy,” said Smith. “He has accomplished many things and has had a great life and family because of the Navy and I want the same experience.”
After leaving the state to attend basic training, and after he is “Forged by the Sea” he will leave
the country to defend freedom and democracy around the world. “I plan to get a better education and a direction in a career,” he said. “Before this I didn’t really have any options or a direction to go –but this gives me that direction and it gives me a future.”
The Navy recruiting team is manned by over 6,100 Sailors and civilians worldwide. The
combined effort of all these people is to lead, mentor, and develop future generations of Sailors
in more than 1,000 recruiting stations around the globe. To explore your options as a Navy
Sailor or start your journey as one, visit www.navy.com or contact a local recruiter.
For more news from Commander, Navy Recruiting Command, visit us on the web at
www.navy.mil/local/cnrc/; on our YouTube Channel, U.S. Navy Recruiter; on Facebook,
www.facebook.com/NavyRecruiting; and on Twitter, @usnavyrecruiter.