Most Americans rely on weather forecasts to plan their daily routine. The U.S. Navy is no different.
With numerous ships, submarines and airplanes deployed in the U.S. Pacific Fleet’s area of operations, sailors stationed at Fleet Weather Center San Diego, make it their primary mission to monitor weather conditions in support of the fleet’s daily operations.
Airman Israel Torres, a 2016 Williams Field High School graduate and native of Mesa, is one of these sailors serving at the Fleet Weather Center, providing full-spectrum weather services to shore-based commands and afloat naval units.
As a Navy aerographer’s mate, Torres is responsible for ensuring the safe navigation of Navy ships by providing detailed weather forecasts.
Torres credits success in the Navy to many of the lessons learned in Mesa.
“Playing sports helped me gain a lot of leadership skills, and growing up I faced a lot of challenges that I had to persevere through,” said Torres.
Additionally, sailors serving with the Fleet Weather Center ensure naval installations, contingency exercises and operations are able to facilitate risk management, resource protection and mission success of fleet, regional and individual unit commanders.
Fleet Weather Center San Diego provides U.S. and coalition ship, submarine and aircraft weather forecasts including en route and operating area forecasts.
The U.S. Pacific Fleet is the world’s largest fleet command, encompassing 100 million square miles – nearly half the Earth’s surface, from Antarctica to the Arctic Circle and from the West Coast of the United States into the Indian Ocean.
Being stationed in San Diego, the principal homeport of the Pacific Fleet, means Torres is playing an important part in the U.S.’s focus on rebuilding military readiness, strengthening alliances and reforming business practices in support of the National Defense Strategy.
Though there are many ways for sailors to earn distinction in their command, community and career, Torres is most proud of earning Sailor of the Month honors for January 2019.
“I’m proud of it because it felt good to be recognized for the effort I put in, and it was a great start to the new year,” said Torres. “When I joined, I wanted to leave the Navy better than when I came in. Being recognized means I am doing something right.”
Serving in the Navy is a continuing tradition of military service for Torres, who has military ties with family members who have previously served. Torres is honored to carry on that family tradition.
“My godfather is a Marine,” said Torres. “He was a role model for me growing up, and I really looked up to him. He led me down the right path.”
As a member of one of the U.S. Navy’s most relied-upon assets, Torres and other sailors know they are part of a legacy that will last beyond their lifetimes providing the Navy the nation needs.
“Serving means making my family proud,” added Torres. “That’s the number one thing, being a role model for my younger siblings, and being someone they can look up to the way that I look up to my godfather.”