BOSTON, Mass. — A Williamsburg Sailor, deployed here in response to the Defense Department’s support to the COVID vaccination effort got the chance to renew his commitment to the Navy on the service’s oldest commissioned vessel still afloat.
Petty Officer 2nd Class Agapito Ramos, assigned to Navy Cargo Handling Battalion 1, reenlisted onboard the USS Constitution, April 3. The boatswain’s mate took advantage of the chance to reenlist on Old Ironsides while on a temporary deployment to support the Federal Emergency Management Agency at the state-run, federally-supported Community Vaccination Center at the Hynes Convention Center.
“Reenlisting on the Constitution was an honor because it’s such a huge part of history,” Ramos said. “It was one of the first Naval ships ever built, and it’s still floating. Not many people have the opportunity to go onto that ship, much less have a reenlistment on it. I take pride in it, and I am so glad I was here for that.”
Launched in 1797, the three-masted, wooden-hulled frigate remains in the Boston Harbor today.
It was an exciting day for not only Ramos, but his peers who also had the opportunity to board the majestic ship and watch the ceremony.
“It was truly an honor to see him reenlist on Old Ironsides,’” said Master Chief Petty Officer Gregory Bell, a logistic specialist assigned to NCHB-1. “It’s also a pleasure to know that the Navy will continue to have an outstanding Sailor.”
Ramos has been serving in the Navy since 1999 — joining shortly after graduating high school.
“I enlisted because I wanted to serve my country,” Ramos said.
Since enlisting, Ramos has achieved what he set out to do and has served his country in many ways, such as helping provide relief, during not only the current COVID-19 pandemic, but also after Sept. 11 and Hurricane Maria.
“I did a lot of humanitarian work,” Ramos said. “When Hurricane Maria hit Puerto Rico, we deployed for a whole month. I have family in Puerto Rico, so I felt like I was able to give back to my community and my country.”
Ramos is part of the team working behind-the-scenes to supply Sailors with everything they need while in Boston, such as water, food, and clean laundry.
“The Sailors are taking care of the community, and we’re taking care of them,” Ramos said. “I feel good about coming to Boston to support FEMA. It shows the military is taking the right initiative by going to the people and providing help.”
Bell said Ramos has shown pride and passion for service in Boston.
“His work ethic has been a seamless transition of what he provides on a daily basis back at NCHB-1,” Bell said. “We are very happy to have him here to support such an important mission and help the people of Boston.”
Ramos is one of the 3,000 other military medical and support personnel from the U.S. Army, U.S. Marine Corps, U.S. Navy and U.S. Air Force already supporting the federal vaccination effort in California, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Michigan, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Texas, Washington and in the U.S. Virgin Islands.
To date, these military-personnel have administered approximately 1.7 million vaccines.
U.S. Northern Command, through U.S. Army North, remains committed to providing continued, flexible Department of Defense support to the Federal Emergency Management Agency as part of the whole-of-government response to COVID-19.
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