by ALVIN PLEXICO, U.S. Navy Office of Community Outreach
GULFPORT, Miss. – Since 1942, sailors assigned to the U.S. Navy’s Construction Force have been building and fighting around the world. Petty Officer 1st Class Rosa Troxell – an Arlington native – is one of those sailors.
After graduation from high school in 2011, “I joined for the college benefits and financial security,” said Troxell. “I’d like to thank my best friend, Evelyn Gomez – she always encouraged me and has been very supportive.”
Eighty years ago, members of Navy Construction Battalions were fittingly nicknamed “Seabees,” a play on the “C” and “B” initials. They are responsible for building military bases and airfields, supporting humanitarian efforts and conducting underwater construction projects.
The values required to succeed in the Navy are similar to those found in Arlington.
“I learned to be open-minded and to always keep learning,” said Troxell, who currently serves as a steelworker with Naval Construction Training Center at the headquarters for naval construction forces in Gulfport, Miss..
Serving in the Navy means Troxell is part of a team that is taking on new importance in America’s focus on strengthening alliances, modernizing capabilities, increasing capacities and maintaining military readiness in support of the National Defense Strategy.
“We are constantly training for the possibility of war,” said Troxell. “During peacetime, Seabees do a lot of humanitarian work building good relationships with other countries.”
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 the importance of accelerating the nation’s advantage at sea.
“Maintaining the world’s best Navy is an investment in the security and prosperity of the United States, as well as the stability of our world,” said Adm. Mike Gilday, Chief of Naval Operations. “The U.S. Navy deters conflict, strengthens our alliances and partnerships, and guarantees free and open access to the world’s oceans.”
Troxell has had many opportunities to achieve accomplishments during military service.
“I enjoy helping others,” she said. “I like teaching people within their job or even life skills that will help them.”
“The Navy has provided a lot in my life,” added Troxell. “What I enjoy most is the camaraderie and all the friendships made. I even met my husband in the Navy. We’re expecting our first child.”