In the fast and flashy world of bustling America, we sometimes forget how our homegrown heroes live their lives. Today, we’ll show you the inspiring dedication of Navy’s Nick O’Sullivan.
“I always push myself to try and learn something new every day.” This is how Nick wakes up every morning – with purpose and passion. When he was seven years old, his family moved all over the country because of his father’s job. He played baseball in school and became an umpire in high school. For Nick, his sports training taught him to make the right decisions at the right time. This would become one of his irreplaceable foundational skills in the military.
Nick was not a kid who you would call a “jock.” Instead, he was extraordinarily creative and had a passion for design. In the military, he integrates his love for creating things into his woodworking activities.
As young Nick sought a career that would change his life, he went on to work in a local grocery store, but he knew there was something bigger awaiting his destiny.
He knew he wanted to serve “something bigger than himself.”
Then, his brother got re-enlisted as a Hospital Corpsman in the Navy. The Navy’s Hospital Corps has more than 30,000 active duty and reserve Corpsmen training in multiple specialties. Corpsmen are stationed in various limitary facilities, research units, clinics, and medical institutions throughout the US. Corpsmen are instrumental in providing direct support to the Navy and Marine Corps (especially during a live mission).
His brother’s passion sparked something in him, pushing him to join the military.
At first, Nick didn’t know what to enlist in, but when he watched a video of Special Operations Craft – Riverine (SOC-R) carrying [Special Warfare Combatant-Craft Crewman (SWCC) crew members, that got his attention.
“I want to do that,” Nick said.
The SWCC is somewhat of a hidden branch in the Navy. They’re not as flamboyant as the ones we see in the movies, but they’re a highly important, specifically trained unit that operates and maintains smaller craft for special operation missions (supporting Navy SEALS).
Since SWCCs are highly specialized, their crewmembers must have a knack for combat and analysis.
As per the US Navy:
“United States depends on an elite defense force known as Special Warfare Combatant-Craft Crewmen, or SWCC. You may have never heard of them, and that’s on purpose—their missions are the kind the Navy keeps quiet because of how vitally important they are. As the Sailors who insert and extract Navy SEALs from classified locations around the world, they are true warriors—highly trained, disciplined and distinguished. Their motto is “On Time, On Target, Never Quit,” and they live up to every word.”
Nick finally knew what he was meant for—the SWCC.
Nick discovered that the program was ruthless. As part of the SEAL’s special operations unit, SWCC needs to be quick on their feet and highly intelligent when it comes to analyzing the situation and making “the right decisions at the right time.” SWCCs are also trained in communications, electronics, small boats, and special missions (like raids and waterborne confrontations).
Nick had to undergo the Recruit Training Command (RTC), aka Boot Camp, where he had intensive medical screening and physical training. Then, there was the 2-week SWCC indoctrination in Coronado, CA. Then, another five weeks go for his Basic Crewmember Training (BCT), which covers water competency, basic seamanship, boat handling, teamwork, and mental tenacity.
He passed the Crewman Qualification Training (CQT) and *finally* became an official SWCC member.
Through this program, Nick became passionate about learning and improving himself everyday. He also appreciated the bond in the SWCC team and treats everyone like family.
Even outside of training and duty, learning and bettering himself simply became second nature to Nick.
Nick’s most outstanding achievement is being invited to return as an SWCC Instructor “Instructor to pay the training and knowledge he’s received forward to new recruits. As an instructor, Nick sees his team as a family and wants to set them up for success when they’re embarking into the world for their mission—just like he does with his own son.”
Want to know more?
From shallow rivers to distant shores, the United States depends on an elite defense force known as Special Warfare Combatant-Craft Crewmen or SWCC. You may have never heard of them, and that’s on purpose—their missions are the kind the Navy keeps quiet because of their vitally important. As the Sailors who insert and extract Navy SEALs from classified locations worldwide, they are true warriors—highly trained, disciplined, and distinguished. Their motto is “On Time, On Target, Never Quit,” and they live up to every word. Learn more about what it takes to be a Special Warfare Combatant-Craft Crewman.
Share your story
We all have our own stories in the military. If you’d like to share yours, reach out to the SOFREP team and send an email to [email protected]sofrep.com.