Tom Ross

Enlisted in the Navy in 1976, advanced to Chief Petty Officer in 1988 and Chief Warrant Officer in 1991, retired in 2001 (25 years of service) as a CWO4. My first memory of being attracted to diving (as a tadpole) was watching Mike Nelson on “Sea Hunt” in the early 1960s. Growing up on a farm in Indiana, diving wasn’t a topic that came up very often. We had a pond on our property and a family friend showed up with a full facemask scuba rig in, probably 1973—one indoctrination dive later. I was hooked, and then in 1974, I was able to attend a YMCA scuba course. My father was a WW II Navy veteran who spent 4 years in the Pacific on a destroyer escort as a gunners mate, so I was drawn to join the Navy after high school and became a gunners mate also. The original plan was to do my 4 years and then attend college on the GI bill, but at the end of 4 years, I was a GMG3 (DV), loving my job and, more importantly, the other divers I was privileged to work with.

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