Service Member Spotlight: Portsmouth native serves aboard floating airport

Petty Officer 1st Class Derrick Battle, a native of Portsmouth, Virginia, serves the U.S. Navy aboard one of the world’s largest warships, the U.S. Navy aircraft carrier USS Gerald R. Ford.

Photo by Mass Communication
Specialist Seaman Manvir Gill

Battle joined the Navy 16 years ago. Today, Battle serves as an aviation boatswain’s mate (handler).

“I was in Naval JROTC in high school,” said Battle. “It made me who I am. At first I didn’t like it, but by the third and fourth year, I really enjoyed it.”

Growing up in Portsmouth, Battle attended I. C. Norcom High School and graduated in 2005. Today, Battle relies upon skills and values similar to those found in Portsmouth to succeed in the military.

“As part of of JROTC, I learned the importance of leadership,” said Battle. “Even though I don’t have brothers and sisters, I do have five cousins who are younger, and I felt like it was important to set a good example for them.”

These lessons have helped Battle while serving in the Navy. Read more here.