Detroit Native Selected as USS Wayne E. Meyer BJOY
SAN DIEGO – A Detroit native has been selected as the 2014 Blue Jacket of the Year on board the guided missile destroyer USS Wayne E. Meyer (DDG 108).
Ship’s Serviceman Seaman (SW) Allen Vaden, a 2013 graduate of Southfield High School, was selected for the honor as recognition for his hard work and dedication while working as the ship’s barber and as a division damage control petty officer.
According to his supervisors, Vaden consistently gave excellent haircuts in accordance with military regulations while also efficiently executing his division’s damage control maintenance.
“Seaman Vaden is responsible for the proper military grooming of the majority of our crew during our 2014 Western Pacific deployment,” said Cmdr. Randy Van Rossum, Wayne E. Meyer’s commanding officer. “His reliable character and unmatched work ethic make him a clear choice as Blue Jacket of the Year.”
Vaden was a vital asset to his division, acting as vending supervisor and helping to facilitate the impressive level of sales that the ship’s store and vending machines achieved throughout fiscal year 2014.
“My hard work and dedication helped me earn this enormous honor,” said Vaden. “My future is bright. I have hopes of becoming a master chief one day, and so far things are looking good!”
Adm. Elmo Zumwalt, the 19th Chief of Naval Operations, launched the Sailor of the Year program in 1972 as a way to recognize extraordinary Sailors at sea.
USS Wayne E. Meyer (DDG 108) was commissioned in 2009 and is named after the late Rear Adm. Wayne E. Meyer, who is regarded as the "Father of Aegis" for his service as the Aegis Weapons System Manager and later his development of the Aegis Shipbuilding Project Office.