After growing up with 2 Navy parents and following in their footsteps, Racquel McCray has been given the chance to serve on the same ship as her mom after she was assigned to the USS Gerald R. Ford earlier this year.
When Racquel turned eighteen years old, she decided that she wanted to follow in the footsteps of her parents so she joined the Navy, making the decision to pursue the same logistics specialty as her mom.
Speaking with Good Morning America, Racquel explained that she chose to join the Navy after she “watched my parents for my entire life.”
“I chose to join because I watched my parents for my entire life,” Racquel said. “They both served, so watching them every day go to work made me actually want to follow in their footsteps, with how successful they were and what they were able to provide for my sister and I.”
To begin with, when Racquel discussed the idea of joining the Navy with her parents, they “didn’t believe her or take her seriously.” However, once they realized that Racquel was extremely serious about joining the Navy and pursuing the logistics specialty, they warmed to the idea.
“I was a proud mother,” Tonya told GMA. “It took a while for her to get everything situated to come in, but that was my baby and I was so proud.”
[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C1Y086T2VwE caption=”Mother%20and%20daughter%20serve%20on%20the%20same%20Navy%20ship%20together%20l%20GMA” site_id=20265823 expand=1 photo_credit=””] Mother and daughter serve on the same Navy ship together l GMA
Racquel realized that she wanted to work alongside her mom after she “shared some pictures with her” and “talked about the experience.”
“I shared some pictures with her and I talked about the experience, and she told me that was why she wanted to join the military — to be able to participate in things like that,” Tonya explained. “I talked to my chain of command, she talked to her chain of command and we thought it could be used as a training opportunity.”
Fortunately, the mom and daughters request was approved and they spent 4 weeks working onboard the same ship.
An experience that was not only very rare, but also very special.
“I was able to share what I did with my daughter every day. She saw what respect that someone of my pay grade gets on a day to day, how they look up to me, and it just felt great to be able to share that experience with her, and also, just to see her hard work,” Tonya said.
While Racquel added that she would “have liked for it to be a little bit longer,” but it was “really nice” for her to experience.
“It was a great experience for me, even though it only lasted four weeks,” Racquel said. “I would have liked for it to be a little bit longer, but it was really nice to be able to see the benefits of all of hard work, how people looked up to her and respected her.”