Richard Vasil, a native of St. Petersburg, Florida, graduated from St. Petersburg High School in June 2009 and continued his studies at St. Petersburg College until marrying his wife Brittnee Wise Vasil and enlisting in the U.S. Navy in March 2011.
In July 2011, he received orders to Sasebo, Japan, a small navy town in southern Japan where he served on the USS Essex and USS Bonhomme Richard and completed multiple deployments throughout Southeast Asia and the Western Pacific. This was an unaccompanied tour, meaning that he had to leave his new wife behind in Florida while he served overseas.
In March of 2014 he attended the Naval Justice School in New Port, Rhode Island where his wife was finally able to join him after almost three years of living apart.
In September 2014, the Vasil’s received orders back to Sasebo, Japan. During this time Richard and his wife Brittnee became very involved with the local Japanese community. Brittnee became an English instructor with students ranging from toddlers to senior’s who had never learned English and Richard started tutoring Japanese Police officers for their English comprehension exams and participated in a mock trial program for the local Department of Defense high school for children of Servicemembers with his Navy JAG office.
It was also during their time in Japan that the Vasil’s found out they were pregnant with their son Tucker. At the time they did not know that Tucker would be born with hemophilia. Due to pregnancy complications the Vasil’s were required to travel to Tokyo, Japan for Brittnee to give birth. This turned out to be a blessing in disguise because they were able to get Tucker to a hospital where they would be able to diagnose and treated for his hemophilia. After Tucker was born, the Vasil’s received new orders to Pensacola, Florida where they have been since June of 2016.