EL PASO, TX (KTSM) – Viviana Sanchez, an El Paso native, will be part of the 25,000 personnel currently training through the U.S. Navy’s 28th edition of the biennial Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC) international maritime exercises, the world’s largest such exercise.

Happening in and around the Hawaiian Islands and Southern California between June 29 – Aug. 4., 26 nations, 38 surface ships, four submarines, nine national land forces, more than 30 unmanned systems, approximately 170 aircraft, and more than 25,000 personnel are part of the training and operations taking place.

I was always taught that manners go a long way. You also have to work past the bare minimum to get to where you want to be.

Viviana Sanchez

A Navy quartermaster is responsible for the navigation of the ship. Today, Sanchez uses skills and values similar to those learned in El Paso.

As the world’s largest international maritime exercise, RIMPAC provides a unique training opportunity that helps participants foster and sustain cooperative relationships that are critical to ensuring safety at sea and security on the world’s oceans. RIMPAC 2022 is the 28th exercise in the series that began in 1971.

I’m enjoying getting to meet people from other countries and be social while learning more about the world.

Viviana Sanchez

Serving in the Navy means Sanchez is part of a team that is taking on new importance in America’s focus on rebuilding military readiness, strengthening alliances and reforming business practices in support of the National Defense Strategy.

I think the Navy’s important to national defense because not only are we able to fully control the seas, but we’re a good forceful backup to all other branches.

Viviana Sanchez

With more than 90 percent of all trade traveling by sea, and 95 percent of the world’s international phone and internet traffic carried through fiber optic cables lying on the ocean floor, Navy officials continue to emphasize that the prosperity and security of the United States is directly linked to a strong and ready Navy.

According to Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Mike Gilday, four priorities will focus efforts on sailors, readiness, capabilities, and capacity.

For 245 years, in both calm and rough waters, our Navy has stood the watch to protect the homeland, preserve freedom of the seas, and defend our way of life. The decisions and investments we make this decade will set the maritime balance of power for the rest of this century. We can accept nothing less than success.”

Admiral Mike Gilday, Chief of Naval Operations

Hosted by Commander, U.S. Pacific Fleet, RIMPAC 2022 will be led by Commander, U.S. 3rd Fleet, who will serve as Combined Task Force (CTF) commander. Royal Canadian Navy Rear Adm. Christopher Robinson will serve as deputy commander of the CTF, Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force Rear Adm. Toshiyuki Hirata as the vice commander, and Fleet Marine Force will be led by U.S. Marine Corps Brig. Gen. Joseph Clearfield. Other key leaders of the multinational force will include Commodore Paul O’Grady of the Royal Australian Navy, who will command the maritime component, and Brig. Gen. Mark Goulden of the Royal Canadian Air Force, who will command the air component.

“I’m proud that I gained knowledge and embraced the experiences that got me to where I am today,” said Sanchez.

During RIMPAC, a network of capable, adaptive partners train and operate together in order to strengthen their collective forces and promote a free and open Indo-Pacific. RIMPAC 2022 contributes to the increased interoperability, resiliency and agility needed by the Joint and Combined Force to deter and defeat aggression by major powers across all domains and levels of conflict.

As a member of the U.S. Navy, Sanchez and other sailors know they are part of a legacy that will last beyond their lifetimes providing the Navy the nation needs.

“Serving in the Navy means I make a lot of sacrifices for everyone’s freedom while still getting to set up a good life for myself and to be a role model for people who look up to me,” added Sanchez. 

For local and breaking news, sports, weather alerts, video and more, download the FREE KTSM 9 News App from the Apple App Store or the Google Play Store