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    To Be A Hero

    Damage Controlman 2nd Class Larissa Lopez-Rodriguez

    Photo By Petty Officer 3rd Class Alan Robertson | 190308-N-SL179-0497 ATLANTIC OCEAN (Mar. 8, 2019) - Damage Controlman 2nd Class...... read more read more

    The lessons that people learn from childhood heroes help to build their character and influence the lifelong decisions they make. For some, a hero is someone who is famous, an athlete or powerful individual who are visible in the world. For Damage Controlman 2nd Class Larissa Lopez-Rodriguez that influential hero was her mom. What she learned most from her mom was always have a courageous spirit.

    “She played a huge role in my life,” said Lopez. “My mom wanted my sister and I to have a backbone. My mom was big on standing up for not only ourselves, but also for what we know to be right. Both of my parents would preach that if you don’t stand for something then you will fall for anything.”

    These base lessons and a strong desire to serve her country inspired Lopez to join the nation’s military, but it was a couple of former Sailors who showed her the damage controlman way.

    “I was heavily influenced by my youth pastor, David Fraker, and his wife Tayrn,” said Lopez. “They were both damage controlman (DC) in the Navy and would spend hours talking about being a DC. They were so thrilled with it that their license plate read DC1 DC2. It made for an easy decision for me when I was choosing a rate. I knew immediately that I also wanted to be a damage controlman.”

    The dangers involved with being a damage controlman are numerous and it takes a strong willed individual to fly into the danger looking to save the ship and others. Lopez is able to apply the lessons she learned as a young girl to her job with the Navy.

    “It’s not about being fearless, but to be brave which comes in handy as a DC because we don’t run away from a fire we run to it,” said Lopez. “We are the Fly-In Squad, because when there is a casualty we fly in there.”

    To be the force that saves the ship require that those Sailors who are not damage controlman possess the drive to learn what they can do to help. It is this strong passion that Lopez wishes to instill into the next generation of Sailors.

    “Being a DC I’m involved in a lot of training evolutions and it has led to me becoming very comfortable being in front of people,” said Lopez. “One of my greatest passions is that I enjoy teaching people so that they can be a better Sailor. I am very passionate about my rate and I have to be the subject matter expert with all ranks of individuals.”

    The lessons learned from a loving parent combined with the inspiring sea stories from Sailors helped guide a young Lopez towards a career that she loves and where she continues to grow.



    Date Taken: 03.17.2019
    Date Posted: 03.18.2019 09:42
    Story ID: 314623
    Location: ATLANTIC OCEAN

    Web Views: 28
    Downloads: 0
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    To Be A Hero