Fil-Am sailor hopes US military would open doors to more Pinoys
Saying the job afforded him a "comfortable and exciting lifestyle," a Filipino-American sailor in the US Navy said he would like to someday see more Filipinos being allowed to join the US military.
"I'm hoping that someday they open the window of opportunity back in the Philippines to the people there so that they have the opportunity to be able to apply to become a member of the US Armed Forces," said Senior Chief Rolen Jiao.
A third-generation sailor, Jiao was born and raised in the Philippines — an experience that he said made him realize "how fortunate I am to live the life of a US Navy."
"Serving in the US Navy and wearing this uniform has allowed a comfortable and exciting lifestyle for my family," he said. "We have been given the opportunity to experience so many different things, to live in different countries, visit exciting places and experience a myriad of different cultures."
"In my twenty four years of service in the Navy, every duty station has been special in its own way, new countries, new friends, new cultures, new customs and of course new foods," Jiao added.
Jiao also said it was worth making numerous sacrifices to balance his work and home life. "I have no regrets with any of the places I've been stationed. All of my experiences have been memorable," he said.
However, he advised those who want to follow his footsteps to "make sure your family is included in your decision and happy with your choice."
Finding a way to make one's circumstances and goals work, he said, was a mindset that helped him advance his career and keep his family.
"Everyone in the Navy has a different career path, a different goal they want to achieve, a different image of success in the Navy. What it all boils down to is that it's up to the Sailor to make it work," Jiao said. —KBK, GMA News