SAN DIEGO, Calif – A 2009 Beavercreek High School graduate and Beavercreek, Ohio native is serving aboard the World War II namesake warship, USS Spruance. Petty Officer 2nd Class Justin Circle is a yeoman aboard the San Diego based ship, a guided missile destroyer.
As a yeoman, Circle is responsible for administrative and clerical work aboard the ship. They interact with visitors, coordinate worldwide travel, submit passport applications, and handle various forms of military correspondence.
More than 300 sailors serve aboard the ship, and their jobs are highly specialized, requiring both dedication and skill. The jobs range from maintaining engines to handling weaponry along with a multitude of other assignments that keep the ship mission ready at all times, according to Navy officials.
Circle has carried lessons learned from his hometown into his military service.
“Growing up I was involved in a lot of sports, which taught me perseverance and the importance of a good work ethic,” he said. “My job in the Navy is demanding, but pushing forward and remaining steadfast keeps me motivated to do a good job.”
Destroyers are warships that provide multi-mission offensive and defensive capabilities. They are about 510 feet long and can be armed with tomahawk land-attack cruise missiles, variants of the SM missile family, advanced gun systems and close-in gun systems. Destroyers are deployed globally and can operate independently, as part of carrier strike groups, surface action groups, or amphibious readiness groups.
Spruance is armed with long range missiles intended for air defense to counter threats to friendly forces posed by manned aircraft, anti-ship, cruise and ballistic missiles.
It was commissioned in 2011 and named after Admiral Raymond A. Spruance. He was a key naval commander during WWII, leading U.S. naval forces during two of the most significant naval battles that took place in the Pacific Theatre: Battle of Midway and Battle of the Philippine Sea. He later served as the U.S. Ambassador to the Philippines.
At Midway, Spruance scored the first major victory for the United States over Japan; generally considered to be the turning point of the war in the Pacific.
“USS Spruance is responsible for 22 mission areas, with 350 people onboard each Sailor actively supports multiple missions, said Cmdr. Joshua Menzel, commanding officer of Spruance. “As a member of the Pacific Fleet, the crew of USS Spruance patrol the same waters and trains to perform the same missions as the Sailors Admiral Spruance commanded during WWII.”
Circle has military ties with family members who have previously served and is honored to carry on the family tradition.
“My grandfather served in the Army during the Korean War, my dad retired from the Air Force, and my brother retired as a boatswain’s mate first class from the Navy,” he said. “I would definitely say I’m carrying on the family tradition. I appreciate my family heritage and military history, and I’m also making my own history.”
Circle’s proudest accomplishment was receiving his first Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal.
“It was a combination of all the hard work I did during our last deploymnet and I’m glad I got the recognition, it gives me a good sense of pride,” he added.
As a member of one of the U.S. Navy’s most relied-upon assets, Circle and other Spruance sailors know they are part of a legacy that will last beyond their lifetimes.
“Serving in the Navy, I believe I’m part of something much bigger,” said Circle. “Now that I’m in the military, I feel like I’m keeping friends and family at home safe. It’s a good feeling.”
Story courtesy of the US Navy.