Story by Chief Mass Communication Specialist Kristopher Regan, Navy Talent Acquisition Group Empire State Public Affairs


NEW YORK (NNS) – Soon after graduating high school, Ralph Tassy received a one-way ticket to the United States and departed his home town of Port-au-Prince, Haiti. With the help of his father, he left the island country to start a journey he believed he was destined to make.

“After high school, my dad gave me a one-way ticket to the states and told me to make something out of myself,” said Tassy. “I went to college for a couple of years but quickly realized that I wanted to be part of something bigger.”

After those years in college, disaster struck when the U.S. was attacked by terrorists on September 11, 2001. It was at that moment when Tassy realized what his higher calling was, but it unfortunately wouldn’t be as easy to pursue as he hoped.

“The day after 9/11, I was at a recruiting office in Los Angeles ready to join the Navy,” said Tassy. “I got turned away because of my immigration status at the time, but I told the recruiter that I would be back.”

That would not deter Tassy. Six years later, he returned to the recruiting station and began his journey in what he considers the best job he’s ever had.

“I owe everything I have and all my accomplishments to the Navy,” said Tassy. “I have been so fortunate while serving in the U.S. Navy. I have been to 46 different countries. My family and I are financially set and are getting ready to buy our dream home.”

Tassy’s job in the Navy has been Boatswain’s Mate, but that changed when he set sail to become a Navy recruiter two years ago. Today he holds the rank of Boatswain’s Mate 1st Class, though his focus is on recruiting future Sailors to man the fleet.

Tassy is assigned to Navy Recruiting Station Elmhurst, New York, where he has earned the title of Recruiter of the Month in addition to his station being selected as the Large Station of the Year for fiscal year 2020. He has also been selected as the top recruiter for three months, and is showing no signs of slowing his course for success.

“The most rewarding part of my job is getting the phone call from one of my future Sailors saying they graduated boot camp and thank you for your help,” said Tassy. “One of my future Sailors might be the next MCPON [Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy], and it’s an honor to be part of the process.”


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Updated March 19, 2021 (kbh)