Old Harbour High alumna supports US Navy aviation squadron on missions around the globe
Reneese Miller

PETTY Officer 2nd Class Reneese Miller, from Clarendon, Jamaica, serves the US Navy assigned to Airborne Early Warning and Control Squadron (VAW) 120.

Miller graduated in 2010 from Old Harbour High School. She earned a bachelor's degree in psychology from State University of New York at Old Westbury in 2018.

The skills and values needed to succeed in the Navy are similar to those found in Jamaica, she said.

"Growing up, I learned that whatever I'm doing, I need to do it to the best of my ability because you never know who is watching," said Miller. "As an aviation structural mechanic, this is very crucial to aiding my career development."

Miller joined the Navy four years ago. Today, Miller serves as an aviation structural mechanic.

"I joined the Navy after graduating from college because I realised I wanted to look for opportunities away from home," said Miller. "The Navy had a lot of opportunities to offer for me to better myself."

Members of VAW 120, also known as the "Greyhawks", fly and maintain the E-2C/D Hawkeye and C-2A Greyhound aircraft.

Known as the Navy's "digital quarterback", the Hawkeye gives the warfighter expanded battlespace awareness. The Hawkeye's command and control capability makes it a multi-mission platform through its ability to coordinate concurrent missions such as airborne strike, land force support, rescue operations and support for drug interdiction operations. The Hawkeye is capable of launching from and landing aboard aircraft carriers.

The Greyhound provides high-priority logistics support to carrier strike groups around the world. A versatile support workhorse for the Navy for nearly 40 years, the Greyhound is capable of taking off from and landing aboard aircraft carriers at sea to deliver cargo, mail and passengers, in addition to its tactical and search and rescue roles, according to Navy officials.

This year commemorates 50 years of women flying in the US Navy. In 1973, the first eight women began flight school in Pensacola, Florida. Six of them, known as "The First Six", earned their "Wings of Gold" one year later. Over the past 50 years, the Navy has expanded its roles for women to lead and serve globally and today our women aviators project power from the sea in every type of Navy, Marine Corps and Coast Guard aircraft.

Serving in the Navy means Miller is part of a team that is taking on new importance in America's focus on rebuilding military readiness, strengthening alliances and reforming business practices in support of the National Defense Strategy.

"The Navy contributes to national defence by allowing citizens to know that they have a force they can rely on," said Miller. "Our presence worldwide speaks for itself."

With 90 per cent of global commerce travelling by sea and access to the Internet relying on the security of undersea fibre optic cables, Navy officials continue to emphasise that the prosperity of the United States is directly linked to trained sailors and a strong Navy.

Miller has many opportunities to achieve accomplishments during military service.

"My proudest accomplishments in the Navy are becoming a collateral duty inspector as a petty officer third class and advancing to petty officer second class at my first command," she said. "I feel not many people make rank at their first command. I'm on track with my career. My greatest accomplishment in life was when I became a mom in December 2022."

As Miller and other sailors continue to train and perform missions, they take pride in serving their country in the US Navy.

"Serving in the Navy means that I'm contributing to something bigger than myself and, in the end, knowing there are people who are appreciative of my duties," said Miller.

Miller is grateful to others for helping to make a Navy career possible.

"I want to thank my leading petty officers because they have been really helpful," added Miller. "I also want to thank my family for being there when I need them. I also want to thank my best friend, Jada, because she's always there when I need to vent."

BY ASHLEY CRAIG Navy Office of Community Outreach

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