Story and photos by MC3 Justin Pacheco
Navy Public Affairs Support Element Detachment Hawaii
Service members and their families gathered for a Fourth of July celebration in honor of Independence Day at Ward Field, hosted by Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam’s Morale, Welfare and Recreation (MWR).
The celebration featured live music by tribute bands The Eagles Experience and U2 by UV. The event also had a variety of activities, including a petting zoo, magicians, stilt walkers and jugglers, carnival-style games, a car show and fireworks display. MWR organizers estimated that about 9,000 people attended the event throughout the evening.
In addition, MWR hosted a drawing in partnership with JN Group. The winner was able to choose between a 2017 Chevrolet Sonic, a Yamaha Waverunner, a Harley-Davidson Sportster or a two-year lease on an Audi A3.
The Harley-Davidson Sportster was selected by the winner, Engineering Laboratory Technician 2nd Class Reuben Rojas, from the USS Greeneville (SSN-772).
“I’m still in shock about it,” Rojas said. “I just wanted to come out and show my appreciation for my fellow service members and wish America a happy birthday, and ended up winning a motorcycle. It was really just icing on the cake and made this day all the more amazing.”
Activities paused for a moment at sunset as Musician 2nd Class Catherine Chauvot performed evening colors for those in attendance. This was her first time playing the iconic bugle call for such a large crowd.
“It’s always somewhat solemn to play those 24 notes,” Chauvot said. “They serve as an earnest reminder of those who made the ultimate sacrifice in service to the United States, and it was such a huge honor to perform it for everyone here.”
The day’s festivities finished with a display of fireworks in the historic harbor.
For more news and information on upcoming events MWR events at the base, visit www.greatlifehawaii.com.