In keeping with the warfighting theme
of this issue of Undersea Warfare Magazine, the following article is presented in honor of the only Submariner to have made the ultimate sacrifice in ground fighting in the Global War on Terror (GWOT).
Lt. Jeffrey Ammon
June 16, 1970-May 20, 2008
by Cmdr. Cameron Aljilani, OPNAV N97
From 2003 to 2011, as the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan periodically intensified, manpower requirements exceeded the availability of Soldiers and Marines to fill overseas billets. To help mitigate shortfalls, all the military services provided additional personnel to the Global War on Terrorism (GWOT) through the Individual Augmentation (IA) process. For the Navy, eligible personnel were limited to those serving in non-critical shore duty billets. In some cases, Sailors would show up to their well-deserved shore duty after three to five years on sea duty only to find out they were "nominated" and accepted for a 12-month IA to the Middle East. While the experiences were unique and potentially career-enhancing, the threat "outside the wire" was real.
Lt. Jeffrey Ammon of Orem, Utah enlisted in the Navy in 1988 as a nuclear machinist mate. After completing the nuclear training pipeline as an Engineering Laboratory Technician (ELT), he applied for and was accepted as a staff member where he continued to train enlisted and officer students. After two years at prototype, he reported to his first submarine, USS Ohio (SSBN 726). During his first sea tour he qualified in submarines and was selected for the Nuclear Enlisted Commissioning Program. In 2001 he completed a bachelor degree in Nuclear Engineering from Oregon State University. Returning to the Navy as a commissioned officer, he completed his nuclear officer training and reported to his second boat, USS Alabama (SSBN 731).
Reporting to shore duty in 2007, Lt. Ammon was selected for IA to Afghanistan where he worked to rebuild economic infrastructure through micro-loans. He helped small businesses with restocking, buying business equipment, repairing damage to shops, and hiring employees.
"He felt like he was making a difference," said his mother, Kathleen Ammon. "He really wanted to try a little bit longer to make a difference."
On May 23, 2008, Lt. Jeffrey Ammon died from injuries caused by a road-side Improvised Explosive Device. Formally attached to Commander Navy Region Northwest, he was on his second tour serving as a member of Provincial Reconstruction Team Ghazni, Aband District, Afghanistan.
"Ammon was a loving, caring man who loved going hiking and camping and the outdoors," said Jim Edwards, Ammon's brother-in-law.
He is survived by his wife and two children.