From Independent Journal Review- (Video is very moving)
“Eternal Father, Strong to Save.” The Navy knows it well, and for good reason.
Sung regularly at the United States Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland, it is considered “the Navy hymn.” It was sung at the funerals of former presidents John F. Kennedy and Franklin Delano Roosevelt.
But the hymn itself has a history with the sea — a history that dates back over 150 years.
According to Eric Metaxas at Breakpoint.org, the story began when the hymn's author, William Whiting, was just a boy:
The hymn’s author was an Anglican churchman named William Whiting, who was born in England in 1825. As a child, Whiting dodged in and out of the waves as they crashed along England’s shoreline.