South Plains Troop Salute: Lorenzo native serves aboard Navy warship in San Diego

Our thanks to Petty Officer 2nd Class Juan Rodriguez for his work as part of the USS Boxer. Safe travels and thank you for your service to our country.

By Megan Brown, Navy Office of Community Outreach

SAN DIEGO – Petty Officer 2nd Class Juan Rodriguez, a native of Lorenzo, Texas, serves aboard the U.S. Navy warship, USS Boxer, homeported in San Diego, California.

Photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Andrew Hanchar,
Navy Office of Community Outreach

Rodriguez, a 2020 Lorenzo High School graduate, joined the Navy two years ago.

“I joined because my stepdad told me a lot of stories of his adventures in the Navy,” said Rodriguez. “I wanted to get out, see the world and have stories of my own.”Skills and values learned in the Navy are similar to those found in Lorenzo.

“My hometown taught me that the work day isn’t over until everything is done,” said Rodriguez. “I also learned in Lorenzo that when you are kind to someone, they will pay it back eventually.”

Boxer’s crew is made up of approximately 1,200 crewmembers and can accommodate up to 1,800 Marines. Amphibious assault ships transfer Marines, equipment and supplies and can support helicopters or other aircraft.

With 90 percent of global commerce traveling by sea and access to the internet relying on the security of undersea fiber optic cables, Navy officials continue to emphasize that the prosperity of the United States is directly linked to trained sailors and a strong Navy.

“Our mission remains timeless – to provide our fellow citizens with nothing less than the very best Navy: fully combat ready at all times, focused on warfighting excellence, and committed to superior leadership at every single level,” said Adm. Mike Gilday, Chief of Naval Operations. “This is our calling. And I cannot imagine a calling more worthy.”

As a member of the Navy, Rodriguez is part of a world-class organization focused on maintaining maritime dominance, strengthening partnerships, increasing competitive warfighting capabilities and sustaining combat-ready forces in support of the National Defense Strategy.

“The Navy is a world power because of our presence around the globe and our ability to keep the country safe,” said Rodriguez.

Rodriguez has many opportunities to achieve accomplishments during military service.

“My proudest Navy accomplishment is earning the rank of petty officer second class in 18 months,” said Rodriguez. “It took my stepdad four years, and I was able to do it in such a short amount of time. I was also able to get my first car because of the Navy.”

As Rodriguez and other sailors continue to perform missions, they take pride in serving their country in the United States Navy.

“Serving in the Navy is not just about being part of the 1 percent who decide to join the military,” said Rodriguez. “At the end of the day, it means fighting for the people to your left and right. Some of the people are random that you have never met before however, you have this bond from serving and you will fight for them. To me, it is a big deal to be a part of something bigger than yourself.”Rodriguez is grateful to others for helping make a Navy career possible.

“I would like to thank my stepdad for constantly pushing me, teaching me, guiding me and believing in me,” added Rodriguez.

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