PEARL HARBOR – A 2011 El Toro High School graduate and Lake Forest, California, native is serving in the U.S. Navy as part of the world’s largest international maritime warfare exercise known as the Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC).
Lt. j.g. Landon Alvarado is an electrical officer aboard USS O’Kane, currently operating out of Pearl Harbor, Hawaii.
A Navy electrical officer is responsible for electrical safety onboard the ship, as well as training new sailors in electrical safety.
Alvarado is looking forward to applying the lessons learned from Lake Forest to working in the Navy.
“My parents instilled the value of being a good person,” said Alvarado. “Taking the time to stop and talk to sailors can make a huge difference for them.”
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 2018 is the 26th exercise in the series that began in 1971.
The theme of RIMPAC 2018 is “Capable, Adaptive, Partners,” according to Navy officials. The participating nations and forces will exercise a wide range of capabilities and demonstrate the inherent flexibility of maritime forces. These capabilities range from disaster relief and maritime security operations to sea control and complex warfighting. The relevant, realistic training program includes amphibious operations, gunnery, missile, anti-submarine and air defense exercises, as well as counter-piracy, mine clearance operations, explosive ordnance disposal and diving and salvage operations.
“I’m looking forward to being able to sail with foreign navies,” said Alvarado. “We haven’t had that opportunity before so it will be a huge learning experience.”
This is the first time Israel, Sri Lanka and Vietnam are participating in RIMPAC. Additional firsts include New Zealand serving as sea combat commander and Chile serving as combined force maritime component commander. This is the first time a non-founding RIMPAC nation (Chile) will hold a component commander leadership position.
This year will also feature live firing of a Long Range Anti-Ship Missile (LRASM) from a U.S. Air Force aircraft, surface to ship missiles by the Japan Ground Self-Defense Force, and a Naval Strike Missile (NSM) from a launcher on the back of a Palletized Load System (PLS) by the U.S. Army. This marks the first time a land based unit will participate in the live fire event during RIMPAC. RIMPAC 2018 will also include international band engagements and highlight fleet innovation during an Innovation Fair.
“I’m proud of being a division officer, and seeing my sailors work with each other and see them grow,” said Alvarado.
Twenty-six nations, 46 surface ships, five submarines, more than 200 aircraft and 25,000 personnel will participate in the biennial Rim of the Pacific Exercise. This year’s exercise includes forces from Australia, Brazil, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Colombia, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Israel, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, Peru, the Republic of Korea, the Republic of the Philippines, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Tonga, the United Kingdom, the United States and Vietnam.
As a member of the U.S. Navy, Alvarado and other sailors know they are part of a legacy that will last beyond their lifetimes providing the Navy the nation needs.
“I’ve learned how much I can really accomplish without much guidance,” said Alvarado. “The Navy gives me the opportunity to take initiative. Serving in the Navy means I’m making a difference in the world, and that gives me a lot of pride.”
Additional information about RIMPAC is available at cpf.navy.mil