An Anaheim, California, native is serving aboard USS Philippine Sea, a U.S. Navy a Flight II Ticonderoga-class guided missile cruiser.
Lieutenant Junior Grade Sarah English is a 2013 Orange Lutheran High School graduate and a 2017 graduate of University of Southern California. Today, English serves as a Surface Warfare Officer.
“The Surface Warfare Officer (SWO) must develop experience and in-depth knowledge in one or more specific line discipline (operations, combat systems, engineering) and learn the fundamentals of all line disciplines,” said English. “As a Surface Warfare Officer I have led multiple divisions, been trusted to lead bridge team in safe navigation of ship, and defended ship from threats as a CIC watchstander.”
English joined the Navy four years ago because of her family ties to service.
“My dad served as a fireman for Downey, California, for over 30 years and my mom has a background in law enforcement, working for the Alcoholic Beverage Control,” said English. “I was drawn to serving and giving back to the community and country in which I was afforded the opportunity to grow up in.”
According to English, the values required to succeed in the Navy are similar to those found in Anaheim.
“Growing up in Orange County, California, taught me to be very patriotic,” said English. “Participating in local Veteran’s Day events, seeing troops honored at Anaheim Angels Games, watching Disneyland’s Flag Retreat Ceremony and being connected to Orange Lutheran Alumni that went to the USAFA and USNA, instilled in me pride for my hometown, Veterans and our country. My love for all of the freedoms I have had in Anaheim has helped me see the light at the end of the challenging days.”
The USS Philippine Sea’s keel was laid in April 1986 in Bath, Maine, and she was commissioned in March 1989. She is the second ship to bear the name, after an aircraft carrier. Philippine Sea has participated in Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm, Operation Iraqi Freedom, and Operation Ocean Shield to name a few. The USS Philippine Sea conducted initial Tomahawk strikes in Afghanistan in 2001 at al-Qaeda terrorist training camps and Taliban installations for Operation Enduring Freedom, and in 2014, she fired Tomahawks in the Persian Gulf at sites in Syria, targeting training camps and weapons depots.
According to Navy officials, Flight II Ticonderoga-class guided missile cruisers are multi-mission surface combatants capable of supporting carrier battle groups, amphibious forces, or of operating independently and as flagships of surface action groups. Cruisers are equipped with Tomahawk cruise missiles giving them additional long range Strike Warfare capability. Some have been outfitted with Ballistic Missile Defense capability.
Though there are many opportunities for sailors to earn recognition in their command, community and careers, English is most proud of completing two challenging deployments.
“I served aboard USS ESSEX (LHD 2) on my first deployment from July 2018 to March 2019 and earned my Officer of the Deck and Surface Warfare Officer qualification,” said English. “I was trusted to lead the ship’s navigation team to successfully launch jets and transit high density areas. Next, I served aboard USS PHILIPPINE SEA (CG 58), on my second deployment from June 2020 to April 2021. I am proud to have supported freedom of navigation in the Arabian Gulf area during both deployments.”
As a member of the U.S. Navy, English, as well as other sailors, know they are a part of a tradition providing the Navy the nation needs.
“Serving in the Navy means to me to never give up,” added English. “Whether its the late night watch, missing another holiday or wedding or the daunting fact that you are only 2 months into a 8+ month deployment, giving up is not an option. Serving in the Navy means committing your very best daily to support your fellow shipmates, ship and self. Serving in the Navy means that you are part of something greater than yourself and realizing your worth to those around you as everyone on a ship plays in vital role in the ship’s success and safety.”