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Raleigh native serves with U.S. Navy helicopter squadron
Published Thursday, September 12, 2019
by Jackson Brown, Special To The Tribune

SAN DIEGO, Calif. – Petty Officer 3rd Class Avery Obame wanted to help people and serve the country. 

Now, two years after enlisting in the U.S. Navy, Obame serves with the Raptors of Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron 71, working with one of the Navy’s most advanced helicopters at Naval Air Station North Island, San Diego.

Obame, a 2012 graduate of Fellowship Baptist Academy, is a naval aircrewman with HSM 71, a versatile squadron that’s capable of completing a number of important missions for the Navy with the MH-60R “Seahawk” helicopter.

Obame credits success in the Navy to many of the lessons learned in Raleigh. “I learned that hard work can overcome anything, and that's been a big help in the Navy,” he said.

HSM 71's primary mission is to conduct sea control operations in open-ocean and coastal environments as an expeditionary unit. This includes hunting for submarines, searching for surface targets over the horizon, and conducting search and rescue operations.

“There are a lot of sensors and capabilities on the aircraft,” Obame said. “It's truly the best multi-mission helicopter in the world, and there's no other helicopter that can complete the missions that our helicopter can.”

Serving in the Navy means Obame is part of a world 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.

“Serving in the Navy means serving something greater than myself,” Obame said. “It's a great sense of accomplishment.”



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