Asheville Native Supports Critical Navy Mission in the Middle East

By Staff Writer, Naval Activity in Bahrain- Lt. Christopher Morgan, an Asheville, North Carolina, native, wanted to have an opportunity for an education and a job after college. Now, seven years later and half a world away at Naval Support Activity Bahrain, Morgan serves at U.S. Naval Forces Central Command (NAVCENT) / U.S. 5th fleet.

“The dynamic environment here is a good challenge for me,” said Morgan. “Working with so many coalition allies is also unique.”
Morgan, a 2008 graduate of T.C. Roberson High School, is a special operations officer at U.S. 5th Fleet, headquartered in Manama, Bahrain.
“I am responsible for coordinating and scheduling U.S. submarine operations in the Central Command area of responsibility,” said Morgan.

Morgan is a part of Task Force 54, which commands operations of U.S. submarine forces and is the anti-submarine warfare commander for U.S. Central Command. Their mission covers all aspects of undersea operations, including effective submarine employment to safety and logistics.

Morgan credits success at U.S. 5th Fleet, and in the Navy, to many of the lessons learned in Asheville.
“I had great mentors and coaches growing up that taught me the true meaning of discipline and hard work,” said Morgan.

U.S. 5th Fleet directs naval operations to ensure maritime security and stability in the Central Region, which connects the Mediterranean Sea and Pacific Ocean through the western Indian Ocean. They work with partner nations to ensure freedom of navigation and the free flow of commerce in international waterways.
“We serve as submarine experts for U.S. 5th Fleet, so everyone goes to us for technical help with submarines,” said Morgan.

The Navy’s U.S. 5th Fleet area of operations encompasses about 2.5 million square miles of ocean, and includes the Arabian Gulf, Gulf of Oman, Red Sea and parts of the Indian Ocean. This expanse, comprised of 20 countries, includes three critical choke points; the Strait of Hormuz, the Suez Canal and the Strait of Bab al Mandeb at the southern tip of Yemen.

“Living in the middle east is a unique challenge that also provides a lot of opportunities,” said Morgan.
Serving in the Navy means Morgan is part of a world that is taking on new importance in America’s focus on rebuilding military readiness, strengthening alliances and reforming business practices in support of the National Defense Strategy.

A key element of the Navy is tied to the fact that America is a maritime nation, and that the nation’s prosperity is tied to the ability to operate freely on the world’s oceans. More than 70 percent of the Earth’s surface is covered by water; 80 percent of the world’s population lives close to a coast; and 90 percent of all global trade by volume travels by sea.

“Our priorities center on people, capabilities and processes, and will be achieved by our focus on speed, value, results and partnerships,” said Secretary of the Navy Richard V. Spencer. “Readiness, lethality and modernization are the requirements driving these priorities.”
Though there are many ways for sailors to earn distinction in their command, community, and career, Morgan is

most proud of getting qualified in submarines in 2016.
“There was a lot of hard work and effort that was put into getting that qualification, and it made me proud to achieve that,” said Morgan.

As a member of one of the U.S. Navy’s most relied upon assets, Morgan and other sailors know they are part of a legacy that will last beyond their lifetimes contributing to the Navy the nation needs.
“Serving in the Navy is an opportunity to give back while also contributing to our country, and I like that part of it,” said Morgan.

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