HONOLULU (NNS) -- A veteran newscaster in Hawaii and anchor of KHON(FOX)2's Wake Up 2day show, gave Canadian Rear Adm. Gilles Couturier an honorary title during an interview July 24 about Rim of the Pacific Exercise 2014.
Couturier, who has participated in five RIMPAC exercises over the years, was named by Ron Mizutani as an "honorary Kama'ina" - a native-born local citizen of Hawaii. Couturier is commander of the maritime component for RIMPAC, the world's biggest maritime exercise, which is about to enter its final week in and around Hawaii.
On behalf of all RIMPAC participants, Couturier thanked the people of Hawaii for their support and "aloha," noting how RIMPAC helps the local economy.
"Without a doubt the 25,000 sailors, plus the ships ... they need all sorts of things, so we buy local Hawaiian and I want to take the opportunity to thank the [people of Hawaii] for their hospitality," Couturier said. "This is my fifth time at RIMPAC, so I'm very familiar with your beautiful islands and every time looking forward to come back here and visit and enjoy."
During his interview, Couturier explained two of the primary goals of RIMPAC.
"First of all, it's to be able to learn to work together as professional mariners. So this year we have 22 countries, 47 ships, 200-plus aircraft, 6 submarines and over 25,000 people here. What we are trying to do to is work together in order to be able to be ready to operate at sea anywhere in the world," Couturier said.
"The second goal of RIMPAC is to create those relationships, amongst all of us the leaders of the exercise, but also amongst some of the ships' captains, the key staff - so whenever we are called to work together we can grab that phone and say, 'Hey, remember me? You and I worked together at RIMPAC.' That makes it a lot easier to operate at sea."
Mizutani asked, "Are you learning from each other as well? Different techniques, different MOs, if you will?"
Couturier responded, "Absolutely! We call it, Tactics Training and Procedures. So each country comes from their own slightly different approach, but what we do realize at the end is that we are pretty well all the same. We know what to do. One of the key events we do at sea is maritime interdiction operations, so anti-piracy roles off the Gulf of Aden, we have to do some things to prevent the pirates from doing the bad stuff at sea, so we share how we operate, how we do it, some of the tactics we use, and it proves to be very useful to all of us."
Mizutani thanked "honorary Kama'ina" Couturier for another successful Rim of the Pacific exercise in and around Hawaii.
"I'm glad you folks are learning and absorbing and at the same time, sir, you are helping our economy. You folks pump back a ton of money into Hawaii's economy," Mizutani said.
KHON(FOX)2's Hawaii Navy News segment began in early 2009, in partnership with Navy Region Hawaii. It is a biweekly, sometimes weekly, interview to inform the public about items of interest at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam on Oahu and Pacific Missile Range Facility on Kauai.