Bridgeport native serves as ‘Vanguard in Peace, Spearhead in War’

Seaman Evanna Dias

Seaman Evanna Dias

A 2017 Bridgeport Military Academy graduate and Bridgeport, Connecticut, native is serving in the U.S. Navy with Assault Craft Unit FOUR (ACU 4), one of the Navy’s most advanced amphibious warfare units.

Seaman Evanna Dias is a logistics specialist with the group operating out of Virginia Beach, Virginia.

A Navy logistics specialist is responsible for supplying parts to keep the command mission capable.

“My job makes a vital part of mission completion,” said Dias. “Without the right parts you can’t do anything.”

Dias credits success in the Navy to many of the lessons learned in her hometown of Bridgeport.

“My hometown helps to keep me humble and remember where I came from,” said Dias.

ACU 4 is one of the components of Naval Beach Group TWO (NBG 2).

Commissioned in 1948, just after World War II, NBG 2 trains and equips military forces for deployment overseas. Sailors with NBG 2 serve a vital role in the Navy our nation needs by ensuring that amphibious operations remain ready to defend and protect America at all times.

ACU 4 operates landing craft, air cushion (LCAC) vehicles, which are specialized to transport personnel and equipment from surface ships to shore. The LCAC is a high-speed, over-the-beach craft capable of carrying a payload of more than 60 tons. The LCAC can be used to transport weapons systems, cargo and personnel of Marine assault units. Air cushion technology allows the vehicle to reach more than 70 percent of the world’s coastline, while only 15 percent of that coastline is accessible by conventional landing craft, according to Navy officials.

The exercises and real-world operations that ACU 4 sailors participate in include evacuation of American citizens from a hostile territory, delivery of food and medical supplies after a natural disaster, and many other tasks that involve movement from ships off-shore to the beach, according to Navy officials.

“We are one of the smallest communities in the Navy,” said Dias. “I like having the opportunity to serve here and see a different side of the Navy.”

Jobs are highly specialized and keep each part of the command running smoothly, according to Navy officials. The jobs range from operating boats to maintaining engines.

“ACU 4 sailors and craft are the connector and where the rubber meets the sand between the Amphibious Ready Group and the fight,” said Capt. Erik Nilsson, ACU 4’s commanding officer. “The maintenance team is dedicated to ensuring the craft are ready at a moment’s notice to engage in missions from high-end combat to humanitarian assistance and disaster relief.”

Though there are many ways for a sailor to earn distinction in their command, community, and career, Dias is most proud of becoming a supervisor.

“I was brand new and outshined those I was competing with to become a leader at such an early rank,” said Dias.

While serving in the Navy may present many challenges, Dias said she has found many great rewards in her service so far.

“The Navy has taught me to stay focused and take every opportunity the service can provide you with,” said Dias.

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