Navy Achievement Medal

Relationship: Im/migrant
A summary of my work onboard CHAFEE
A summary of my work onboard CHAFEE

I don't have any immigrants in my extended family. My aunt moved to LA and my uncle moved to Florida, but i've never spent much time there and can't really relate. I can share my own migration story because it's all I can speak to. While serving in the Navy, I was fortunate enough to get stationed in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. I got to live there for about five years, and it became a sort of second home to me. Before moving to Oahu, I had very little travel experience outside of Massachusetts. When I left Oahu, I felt like a completely different person with a much broader perspective. Life in Oahu was much more laid back than the Northeast, and it often felt as if time moved a little slower. In Hawaii, very few people are in a rush to go anywhere or do anything.  Although I was living a typical life, nearly everywhere I went there was something awe-inspiring to look at. My morning commute through the mountains resembled a panoramic shot from the film Jurassic Park. Within 10 minutes of leaving work at Pearl Harbor, I could be at one of the most amazing beaches the world has to offer. Migrating to Oahu also gave me the opportunity to travel the world, as I was working on the USS Chafee. While moving to Oahu was great on its own, it was also a ticket to experience many other foreign cultures as well. On one deployment, I found myself in a small Mexican town by the sea, eating street tacos with locals. On the next deployment, the crew and I helped paint a newly built school in Lima, Peru. My medal serves as a reminder of everything I learned and experienced by moving to Oahu. 

Place(s): Oahu
Year: 2014

– MH

Relationship:  Im/migrant Im/migrant