El Paso, Texas Native Serves Aboard USS Jackson

by Petty Officer 3rd Class Andrew Langholf
04 November 2021
USS Jackson (LCS 6) Sailor Poses For Portrait
Gunner’s Mate 2nd Class Rafael Ruvalcaba, from El Paso, Texas, assigned to the Independence-variant littoral combat ship USS Jackson, poses for a portrait in the hangar bay during routine operations. Jackson, part of Destroyer Squadron Seven, is on a rotational deployment in the U.S. 7th Fleet area of operation to enhance interoperability with partners and serve as a ready-response force in support of a free and open Indo-Pacific region. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Andrew Langholf/released)
USS Jackson (LCS 6) Sailor Poses For Portrait
USS Jackson (LCS 6) Sailor Poses For Portrait
Gunner’s Mate 2nd Class Rafael Ruvalcaba, from El Paso, Texas, assigned to the Independence-variant littoral combat ship USS Jackson, poses for a portrait in the hangar bay during routine operations. Jackson, part of Destroyer Squadron Seven, is on a rotational deployment in the U.S. 7th Fleet area of operation to enhance interoperability with partners and serve as a ready-response force in support of a free and open Indo-Pacific region. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Andrew Langholf/released)
Photo By: Petty Officer 3rd Class Andrew Langholf
VIRIN: 211117-N-N0831-0008
An El Paso, Texas native and 2013 America’s high school graduate is serving in the U.S. Navy aboard the deployed Independence-variant littoral combat ship USS Jackson (LCS 6).

Gunner’s Mate Second Class Rafael Ruvalcaba joined the Navy in 2018 and has been assigned to Jackson since 2019.

Ruvalcaba’s duties aboard Jackson include the maintenance and operation of all small arm caliber weapons, crew served weapons, 30mm machine guns, missile launch systems, gun weapons systems and other ordnance equipment.

“Maintaining our weapons is extremely important,” said Ruvalcaba. “My ship and crew depend on my equipment to operate safely in any environment we encounter.”

A gunner’s mate in the Navy keeps a constant state of readiness of both weapons and crew qualifications. Ruvalcaba trains Jackson’s crew through real life exercise scenarios, such as active shooter, ship penetration and anti-terrorism drills. Proper performance of these actions provide invaluable knowledge and experience to personnel, which is essential to keeping the ship and crew safe.

“Making sure the crew is familiar and comfortable operating our weapons is why we train,” said Ruvalcaba. “We train in high stress scenarios so it feels as real as possible.”

Jackson is a fast, agile, mission-focused platform designed for operation in near-shore environments yet capable of open-ocean operation. It is designed to defeat asymmetric “anti-access” threats such as mines, quiet diesel submarines and fast surface craft. The crew size for this platform is approximately 100 personnel.

Attached to Destroyer Squadron (DESRON) 7, Jackson is on a rotational deployment to the U.S. 7th Fleet area of operations in support of security and stability in the region, and to work alongside allied and partner navies to provide maritime security and stability, key pillars of a free and open Indo-Pacific.

As the U.S. Navy’s destroyer squadron forward-deployed in Southeast Asia, DESRON 7 serves as the primary tactical and operational commander of littoral combat ships rotationally deployed to Singapore, functions as Expeditionary Strike Group 7’s Sea Combat Commander, and builds partnerships through training exercises and military-to-military engagements.

For more information on Jackson, visit https://www.facebook.com/DESRON7.

 
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Commander, Naval Surface Forces, U.S. Pacific Fleet, 2841 Rendova Rd. San Diego, CA 92155-5490

This is an official
U.S. Navy website

U.S. Pacific Fleet
2841 Rendova Rd
San Diego, CA
92155-5490

Email:
Public Affairs Officer
Webmaster

 
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