Two Maryland natives are serving aboard the USS West Virginia, one of the world’s most advanced ballistic missile submarines.
Petty Officer 1st Class Peter Story, a 2004 Havre de Grace High School graduate, is serving as a culinary specialist.
Petty Officer 1st Class Zachary Montgomery, a Glen Burnie native and 2003 Old Mill High School graduate, is a machinist’s mate.
Measuring 560 feet long, 42 feet wide and weighing more than 16,500 tons, a nuclear-powered propulsion system helps push the ship through the water at more than 20 knots.
“As a culinary specialist, I order, cook and maintain the records for the food served aboard the submarine,” Story said in a news release. “I really like to cook for other people and sometimes I have the opportunity to get creative with my cooking.”
Montgomery said he is one of four sailors responsible for maintaining correct water chemistry in the reactor plant.
"We also ensure radiological controls are properly implemented and enforced,” he said in a news release. “The coolest thing about my job is that there are only four of us who can do the job we do. Also, knowing that my knowledge, expertise and attention to detail ensure the safety of the entire reactor plant is pretty cool.”
Submarines like the USS West Virginia, often referred to as “boomers,” serve as an undetectable launch platform for intercontinental ballistic missiles. They are designed for stealth, extended patrols and the precise delivery of missiles if directed by the President.