SASEBO, Japan – A 2007 Westlake High School graduate and Oxon Hill, Maryland native is serving in Japan in the U.S. Navy aboard USS Germantown.
Petty Officer 2nd class Collin Harris is an information systems technician aboard the ship operating out of Sasebo, Japan.
A Navy information systems specialist is responsible for performing core and specialty functions of network administration.
“I look forward to coming to work everyday,” said Harris. “I like working with the great people I work with everyday.”
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 U.S. has historic and enduring interests in this part of the world.
“Our alliance is rooted in shared interests and shared values,” said Adm. Harry Harris, U.S. Pacific Command Commander. “It’s not hyperbole to say that the entire world has benefited from the U.S.-Japan alliance. While our alliance helped stabilize the region after the Second World War, it also enabled the Japanese people to bring about an era of unprecedented economic growth. And for the last six decades, our Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Marines and Coast Guardsmen have worked side by side with the Japan Self Defense Force to protect and advance peace and freedom.”
Commissioned in 1986, Germantown is the second Navy ship named after the Revolutionary War Battle of Germantown. With a crew of more than 900 sailors and Marines, Germantown is 609 feet long and weighs approximately 16,000 tons. Designed specifically to operate landing craft air cushion small craft vessels, Whidbey Island-class dock landing ships have the largest capacity for these landing craft out of any U.S. Navy amphibious ship.
“This command feels like a second family to me,” said Harris.
Sea duty is inherently arduous and challenging but it builds strong fellowship and esprit de corps among members of the crew. The crew is highly motivated and quickly adapt to changing conditions. It is a busy life of specialized work, watches, and drills.
“Serving in the Navy for 10 years has given me the opportunity to travel and stay gainfully employed,” said Harris.
The Navy’s presence in Sasebo is part a long-standing commitment.
“The U.S.-Japan alliance remains the cornerstone for peace and stability in the Indo-Asia-Pacific region,” said Harris.