By MCSN Jared M. King
USS Enterprise Public Affairs
Enterprise Sailors stand together against cancer
USS ENTERPRISE, At sea – While life carries on throughout deployment aboard the aircraft carrier USS Enterprise (CVN 65), 25 Sailors from Combat Systems Department shaved their heads Feb. 22 in a show of support for their shipmate who was recently diagnosed with cancer.
Electronics Technician 3rd Class Brian J. Dougan never had the opportunity to join his shipmates on Big E’s 21st deployment due to the diagnosis of Stage III C testicular cancer.While being diagnosed with cancer would be an emotional experience for anyone, Dougan said part of the reason the news was so bad was because he knew he would no longer be able to join his fellow Sailors on the ship’s deployment. Not only did the cancer affect his health, it also affected his chance to see the world, make rank, and get dual warfare qualified –all of which were Dougan’s deployment goals. “I always tell him that he needs to focus on his current mission,” said Electronics Technician 1st Class (SW/AW) Michael J. Stanislow, Dougan’s leading petty officer. “Once he gets healthy he can worry about doing his job.” Dougan will be submitting a limited duty medical board report recommending that he be transferred to a shore command for chemotherapy treatment. He is seeking care at Portsmouth Naval Hospital in Portsmouth, Va., where highly trained doctors and medical staffcontinuously monitor his status through blood work and ultrasounds. Since a side effect of chemotherapy is temporary hair loss, Sailors in Dougan’s department decided that shaving their heads symbolized that they were there for him during one of his most difficult moments. “I thought it was a great idea and fully supported the decision to shave our heads to show support for our shipmate,” said Master Chief Fire Controlman (SW) John M. Mann, leading chief petty officer for Combat Systems Department’s administrative division. “I feel bad that it happens to anyone, but it hits a lot closer to home when it happens to an EnterpriseSailor.” Dougan said that once he is fit for full duty, he would love to be able to come back to Enterprise and reunite with the friends he made after spending time aboard the ship. “Thank you for your thoughts and prayers,” said Dougan. “I will beat this and I will return to the fleet. It means a great deal knowing people are willing to reach out on my behalf.” “The Sailors thatshaved their heads to show support are the kind of shipmates I’m proud to serve with,” said Stanislow. “Dougan is a great guy and I can’t wait to see him when we get back from deployment.”