A native of Elizabethtown, Kentucky, Commander Bigay graduated from the United States Naval Academy in 2002 with a Bachelor’s Degree in Economics.
After completing initial flight training as a Commodore’s List with Distinction graduate, Commander Bigay reported to the “Airwolves” of HSL-40 in Mayport, FL for LAMPS MKIII flight training in the SH-60B Seahawk. Following training, he was assigned to the “Grandmasters” of HSL-46. There, he served as Detachment EIGHT Operations Officer in USS Stephen W. Groves (FFG-29) and Detachment SEVEN Maintenance Officer in USS Simpson (FFG-56). He conducted multiple Counter Narco-Terrorism (CNT) deployments, as well as a CONUS deployment in support of post-Hurricane Katrina search and rescue and relief operations. Before departing, he was recognized as the 2008 HSL-46 Pilot of the Year.
In May of 2008, Commander Bigay reported back to HSL-40 as an instructor pilot and maintenance division officer. He went on to serve as squadron Quality Assurance Officer and SH-60B Functional Check Flight Program Manager. In 2010, he was awarded HSM-40 Officer of the Year.
In August 2010, Commander Bigay was hand-selected to join the “Redwolves” of HSC-84, the Navy’s only dedicated Special Operations Forces (SOF) Support Squadron. After transitioning to the HH-60H, he conducted multiple combat deployments in support of OPERATION NEW DAWN and was a plank owner of the USCENTCOM Special Operations Crisis Response Element Air Detachment.
In March 2013, he reported to the “Proud Warriors” of HSM-72. After completing the MH-60R transition and the Seahawk Weapons and Tactics Instructor (SWTI) course, he deployed to Souda Bay, Crete as Officer-in-Charge (OIC) of Detachment TWO in support of U.S. Sixth Fleet. He finished his tour as the Squadron Maintenance Officer and was selected as the 2015 HSM-72 Officer of the Year.
In September 2015, he reported to U.S. Special Operations Command Central (SOCCENT) at MacDill AFB, FL. There he served as the J37 Arabian Peninsula Branch Chief, Joint SOF exercise planner, and operational rotary wing planner.
Commander Bigay has accumulated over 2,900 flight hours in eight different variants of Naval Aircraft. His awards include the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Air Medal (Single Action), Navy Commendation Medal (3 Awards), Navy Achievement Medal (4 Awards), the Sikorsky Rescue “S” and various unit, campaign, and service medals.