By Cryptologic Technician (Technical) 1st Class Justin M. Castillo
YOKOSUKA, Japan – Chief Cryptologic Technician Collections Darren Pierson, a Tampa Bay Tech High School in Tampa, Florida, graduate and native of Kissimmee, Florida, was recently appointed to the rank of U.S. Navy Chief Warrant Officer 2 in a commissioning ceremony held at Information Warfare Training Site (IWTS) Yokosuka, Japan.
When speaking to friends and family gathered for the ceremony, he stressed the importance of perseverance. Despite the denial of previous commission requests, and unexpected personal hardships, he has found strength and success in his faith and the support of his family.
“I want to express my appreciation for the love and support of my family, without them I would be lost,” Pierson said. “My wife, Yana, is my anchor, and she’s been there from the beginning and we make all our big decisions together.”
Pierson began his enlistment and graduated from CTR “A” and “C” school in 2003. His first served aboard USS Dwight D. Eisenhower and would continue to serve on various shore and sea platforms; USS Enterprise and Navy Information Operations Command (NOIC) Norfolk, Virginia. He then volunteered for an Individual Augmentee (IA) assignment in Afghanistan, before advancing to the rank of chief petty officer serving aboard USS Fitzgerald and reporting to IWTS Yokosuka for instructor duty.
After commissioning, Pierson will return to the U.S. for extensive training at various sites including Information Warfare Training Command (IWTC) Virginia Beach, Virginia; IWTC Corry Station, Florida; Naval Information Forces (COMNAVIFORCES) Suffolk, Virginia; and Officer Training in Newport, Rhode Island.
Upon completion, he reports to his ultimate duty station onboard USS Anzio homeported in Norfolk, Virginia.
Pierson’s wife, Yanadile, Aunt Sheryl, and three children, Jaren, Jayla, and Jahleya, were all in attendance for the ceremony.