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Multinational humanitarian event brings aid to rural Vietnam communities

(Left) U.S. Marine Corps Sgt. David Tyson, 7th Engineer Support Battalion combat engineer, mixes grout as U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Zach Julian, 145th Airlift Wing water and fuel system maintenance craftsman, cuts tile during Pacific Angel (PAC ANGEL) 18-2 at Nguyen Hien Junior High School in in Phu Thinh town, Phu Ninh district, Vietnam, Sept. 11, 2018.

(Left) U.S. Marine Corps Sgt. David Tyson, 7th Engineer Support Battalion combat engineer, mixes grout as U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Zach Julian, 145th Airlift Wing water and fuel system maintenance craftsman, cuts tile during Pacific Angel (PAC ANGEL) 18-2 at Nguyen Hien Junior High School in in Phu Thinh town, Phu Ninh district, Vietnam, Sept. 11, 2018. During PAC ANGEL 18-2 civil engineers worked on repairs, refurbishing and upgrades to eight existing rural medical and school facilities. PAC ANGEL is a multilateral humanitarian assistance civil military engagement, which improves military-to-military partnerships in the Indo-Pacific while also providing medical health outreach, civic engineering projects and subject matter exchanges among partner forces. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Javier Alvarez)

U.S. and Australian service members representing Pacific Angel (PAC ANGEL) 18-2 install a window at a classroom at Phan Dinh Phung Primary School in Tam Phuoc commune, Phu Ninh district, Vietnam, Sept. 11, 2018.

U.S. and Australian service members representing Pacific Angel (PAC ANGEL) 18-2 install a window at a classroom at Phan Dinh Phung Primary School in Tam Phuoc commune, Phu Ninh district, Vietnam, Sept. 11, 2018. During PAC ANGEL 18-2 civil engineers worked on repairs, refurbishing and upgrades to eight existing rural medical and school facilities. PAC ANGEL is a multilateral humanitarian assistance civil military engagement, which improves military-to-military partnerships in the Indo-Pacific while also providing medical health outreach, civic engineering projects and subject matter exchanges among partner forces. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Javier Alvarez)

United States and Australian service members perform dental exams, cleanings and teeth extractions as part of Pacific Angel (PAC ANGEL) 18-2 at the Cultural House of Tam Giang commune in Nui Thanh, Quang Nam province, Vietnam, Sept. 12, 2018.

United States and Australian service members perform dental exams, cleanings and teeth extractions as part of Pacific Angel (PAC ANGEL) 18-2 at the Cultural House of Tam Giang commune in Nui Thanh, Quang Nam province, Vietnam, Sept. 12, 2018. PAC ANGEL is a multilateral humanitarian assistance civil military engagement, which improves military-to-military partnerships in the Indo-Pacific while also providing medical health outreach, civic engineering projects and subject matter exchanges among partner forces. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Javier Alvarez)

(Left) Royal Australian Air Force Flight (RAAF) Lieutenant Jess Raine,  RAAF dentist works with RAAF Cpl. Hannah Fortington, a senior dental assistant, to perform a tooth extraction on Luong Van Kiem during Pacific Angel (PAC ANGEL) 18-2 at the Cultural House of Tam Giang commune in Nui Thanh, Quang Nam province, Vietnam, Sept. 12, 2018.

(Left) Royal Australian Air Force Flight (RAAF) Lieutenant Jess Raine, RAAF dentist works with RAAF Cpl. Hannah Fortington, a senior dental assistant, to perform a tooth extraction on Luong Van Kiem during Pacific Angel (PAC ANGEL) 18-2 at the Cultural House of Tam Giang commune in Nui Thanh, Quang Nam province, Vietnam, Sept. 12, 2018. PAC ANGEL is a multilateral humanitarian assistance civil military engagement, which improves military-to-military partnerships in the Indo-Pacific while also providing medical health outreach, civic engineering projects and subject matter exchanges among partner forces. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Javier Alvarez)

U.S. Marine Corps Cpl. David Ricketts, 7th Engineer Support Battalion combat engineer,  plays soccer with Tien Tho Primary School students during Pacific Angel (PAC ANGEL) 18-2 in Tien Tho commune, Tien Phuoc district, Vietnam, Sept. 10, 2018.

U.S. Marine Corps Cpl. David Ricketts, 7th Engineer Support Battalion combat engineer, plays soccer with Tien Tho Primary School students during Pacific Angel (PAC ANGEL) 18-2 in Tien Tho commune, Tien Phuoc district, Vietnam, Sept. 10, 2018. PAC ANGEL 18-2 civil engineers are spread across eight sites focused on the repairing, refurbishing and upgrading existing rural medical and school facilities. PAC ANGEL is a multilateral humanitarian assistance civil military engagement, which improves military-to-military partnerships in the Indo-Pacific while also providing medical health outreach, civic engineering projects and subject matter exchanges among partner forces. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Javier Alvarez)

TAM KY, Vietnam --

Pacific Angel (PAC ANGEL) 18-2, an annual U.S. Indo-Pacific Command directed humanitarian assistance and disaster relief engagement, the last of four iterations in the Quang Nam province, Vietnam, is going strong and is scheduled to conclude Sept.16, 2018.

 

Service members from the U.S., Vietnam, Australia, Singapore, Laos and Cambodia are working alongside non-governmental agencies to conduct medical service engagements and reconstruction efforts to bolster the welfare of rural communities in Vietnam and build partnership capacities with regional partners and allies.

 

“As part of this engagement, we’re committed to supporting Vietnam’s efforts to bring humanitarian assistance to their people,” said U.S. Air Force Lt. Col. Vinh Trinh, 13th Expeditionary Air Squadron PAC ANGEL 18-2 mission commander. “The U.S., at the invitation of the Government of Vietnam, will provide support by conducting medical, dental, optometry and engineering programs.”

 

More than 600 people are expected to pass through the healthcare site daily, where medical experts put their skills to work.

 

Huan Thi Nguyen, a patient, heard about the health service outreach event from a family friend and decided to make the hour and half trip with five friends to PAC ANGEL site. She hopes to meet with an optometrist to discuss her declining vision.

 

“It helps to have events like this,” said Nguyen. “This is a very practical event because it helps the community, especially those who don’t have access to such services.”

 

Civil engineers, spread across eight sites, are using their expertise in structural, roofing, electrical, plumbing and flooring to repair, refurbish and upgrade existing rural medical and school facilities in the province.

 

“To come out and work to make someone’s life better is rewarding,” said Marine Corps Cpl. David Ricketts, 7th Engineer Support Battalion combat engineer. “Most Marines don’t get the opportunity to work with other services in this capacity.”

 

All though most PAC ANGEL participants don’t share the host nation’s language, the hugs and smiles exchanged transcend all language barriers.

 

Now entering its 11th year, PAC ANGEL ensures the region’s militaries are prepared to work together to address humanitarian crisis. Since 2007, PAC ANGEL engagements have impacted the lives of tens of thousands of people by providing health services, humanitarian aid, disaster relief and subject matter expert exchanges.

 

“The relationships we have built and sustained with our multinational partners in the Indo-Pacific region throughout engagements, civil military operations, and military exchanges, help preserve peace and stability in the region,” said Trinh.

 

For stories and updates on PACANGEL 18 visit, www.dvidshub.net/feature/PA18.