Palmetto High grad supports nuclear deterrence from America’s heartland

Palmetto High grad supports nuclear deterrence from America’s heartland
Palmetto High grad supports nuclear deterrence from America’s heartland
Lt. George Abuzeid
(Photo by Senior Chief Petty Officer Gary Ward)

A 2004 Miami Palmetto Senior High School graduate and Miami native is serving in the U.S. Navy as part of the nation’s nuclear deterrence mission at Strategic Communications Wing ONE.

Lt. George Abuzeid credits his brother for his decision to join the service.

“My older brother, Anis, is a Marine infantry officer and influenced my decision to join the military,” Abuzeid said.

The mission stems from the original 1961 Cold War order known as Take Charge and Move Out! Adapted as TACAMO and now the command’s nickname, today, the men and women of TACAMO continue to provide a survivable communication link between national decision makers and the nation’s nuclear weapons.

The commander-in-chief issues orders to members of the military who operate nuclear weapons aboard submarines, aircraft or in land-based missile silos. Sailors aboard TACAMO E-6 Mercury aircraft provide the one-of-a-kind and most-survivable communication needed for this critical mission.

“I’m honored to serve with the men and women who help keep our nation safe through nuclear deterrence,” said Captain Edward McCabe, commodore, Strategic Communications Wing ONE. “Their dedication to our mission is a testament to our mantra of Take Charge and Move Out!”

The command consists of three squadrons and a wing staff that employs more than 1,200 active-duty sailors who provide maintenance, security, operations, administration, training and logistic support for the TACAMO aircraft fleet.

Abuzeid is an instructor pilot assigned to Tinker Air Force Base in Oklahoma where the Navy command is headquartered.

As a Navy instructor pilot, Abuzeid flies E-6 Mercury aircraft, which is an aircraft that ensures communication is maintained with submarines, bombers and nuclear silos.

The Navy’s presence aboard an Air Force base in the middle of America may seem like an odd location given its distance from any ocean; however, the central location allows for the deployment of aircraft to both coasts and the Gulf of Mexico on a moment’s notice. This quick response is key to the success of the nuclear deterrence mission.

“Our mission deters the first strike capability of another nation-state or violent non-state actor,” Abuzeid said.

Sailors serving from America’s heartland take pride in the vital mission they support as well as the nuclear deterrence they help provide.

“I enjoy what I do everyday because of the people I work with,” Abuzeid said.

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