Copiague Native Builds On Seabees Legacy

Since 1942, sailors assigned to the U.S. Navy’s Construction Force have been building and fighting around the world. Petty Officer 2nd Class Justin Meguin, a Copiague native, is one of those sailors.

Petty Officer 2nd Class Justin Meguin (Photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Vanessa White, Navy Office of Community Outreach)

“I joined the Navy because I came from a family of military service,” said Meguin. “I also wanted to become more disciplined while serving my country.”

Eighty years ago, members of Navy Construction Battalions were fittingly nicknamed, “Seabees,” a play on the C and B initials. They are responsible for building military bases and airfields, supporting humanitarian efforts and conducting underwater construction projects.

Meguin, a 2015 Walter G. O’Connell graduate, currently serves with Naval Mobile Construction Battalion One at the headquarters for naval construction forces in Gulfport, Mississippi.

“I would like to thank my dad and my recruiter, Chief Petty Officer Saleema Massey,” said Meguin. “She was very straight forward about everything, and did not give me the run around like other recruiters do.”

According to Meguin, the values required to succeed in the Navy are similar to those found in Copiague.

“Copiague taught me that everyone has different skills and ways of thinking which can help contribute to the bigger picture,” said Meguin.

Serving in the Navy means Meguin is part of a team that is taking on new importance in America’s focus on strengthening alliances, modernizing capabilities, increasing capacities and maintaining military readiness in support of the National Defense Strategy.

“The Navy has a forward presence that deters adversaries from getting onto our land,” said Meguin.

With more than 90 percent of all trade traveling by sea, and 95 percent of the world’s international phone and internet traffic carried through fiber optic cables lying on the ocean floor, Navy officials continue to emphasize the importance of accelerating America’s advantage at sea.

“Maintaining the world’s best Navy is an investment in the security and prosperity of the United States, as well as the stability of our world,” said Adm. Mike Gilday, Chief of Naval Operations. “The U.S. Navy—forward deployed and integrated with all elements of national power—deters conflict, strengthens our alliances and partnerships, and guarantees free and open access to the world’s oceans. As the United States responds to the security environment through integrated deterrence, our Navy must continue to deploy forward and campaign with a ready, capable, combat-credible fleet.”

Meguin and the sailors they serve with have many opportunities to achieve accomplishments during their military service.

“Working at the Presidential Retreat under both the Obama and Trump administrations was my proudest accomplishment,” said Meguin. “I met a lot of good people and had great experiences there.”

As Meguin and other sailors continue to train and perform missions, they take pride in continuing an 80-year legacy and serving their country in the United States Navy.

“Only a small percentage of Americans who actually serve are on active duty, regardless of branch,” added Meguin. “I enjoy the people that I work with, and being part of a group of like-minded individuals.”

By Megan Brown, Navy Office of Community Outreach

Anton Media Staff
In addition to its arts and entertainment publication Long Island Weekly, Anton Media Group publishes 16 community newspapers, several magazines, specialty publications and websites. With brands dating back to 1877, Anton has a commitment to deliver trusted and relevant content to the communities it serves.

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