Independent Duty Corpsman First to Earn ESWS Pin from USS Fort Worth Gold Crew
SAN DIEGO – An independent duty hospital corpsman became the first Sailor assigned to the littoral combat ship USS Fort Worth (LCS 3) Gold Crew to earn the Enlisted Surface Warfare Specialist (ESWS) qualification, Sept. 9.
Chief Hospital Corpsman Sloane E. Sall, assigned to Fort Worth’s Gold Crew, received her ESWS pin from Chief of Naval Operations (CNO) Adm. Jonathan Greenert during an informal ceremony on board the ship.
Greenert came aboard Fort Worth as part of a CNO counterpart visit where he escorted Adm. Wu Shengli, Commander of the Chinese People's Liberation Army (Navy), on a tour of San Diego-based Pacific Fleet units.
A 17-year Navy Reserve full-time support (FTS) Sailor, Sall said the ESWS qualification was her first warfare pin as operational billets are not always readily available to FTS personnel.
Sall, who has been working on the qualification since shortly after checking on board Fort Worth, said working her way through the ESWS qualification process helped her to learn more about the operational side of the Navy.
“You just weren't becoming familiar with the spaces, but learning how to operate equipment and read consoles,” said Sall, a native of Mount Vernon, Ohio. “[On the LCS platform] each crew member is involved in every evolution and casualty response, so you will have to learn to assist.”
According to Sall, the LCS ship-specific deck, navigation and engineering portions of the qualification process took the most time to complete.
“It was time intensive to walk each space with the subject matter expert,” said Sall. “It was imperative that you really took to heart the importance of their training because of our minimum manning on the LCS platform.”
Sall said she joined the LCS program shortly after graduating from independent duty hospital corpsmen school and hopes to remain in and continue to serve the LCS community at the squadron/class level.
Chief Fire Controlman (SW) Beth Simpson, Fort Worth’s Gold Crew ESWS coordinator said it normally takes a Sailor about 18 months to earn the qualification due to acclimating to shipboard life, adjusting to the operational tempo and learning the skills of their rate.
“The goal of the ESWS program is for Sailors to be proficient in all matters of surface warfare and instill a sense of heritage and naval tradition,” said Simpson, a native of Paw Paw, Mich. “I think it's critical for each Sailor to have a broad understanding of each aspect of warfighting that we are capable of and the importance of each Sailor aboard our fine warships.”
Simpson, who joined the LCS program in 2012, said Sall is the first to qualify for the ship’s Gold Crew and that only four Sailors from the ship’s Blue Crew have previously qualified.
“We currently have 31 Sailors enrolled in the ESWS program; two more are initial qualifications and 29 are re-qualifications,” said Simpson. “The LCS program requires us to not only perform the duties of our rate, but of several rates to be successful.”
Commissioned in 2012, Fort Worth is the third littoral combat ship delivered to the Navy and the second LCS of the mono-hull Freedom variant. The ship is homeported in San Diego where the crew is currently participating in training and certification exercises in preparation for future operations.