An Egg Harbor Township native and 2017 Oakcrest High School graduate is serving in the U.S. Navy with U.S. Naval Hospital Yokosuka.
Hospitalman Gabrielle Varalli is serving with Branch Health Clinic Sasebo, operating out of Sasebo, Japan.
A Navy hospitalman is responsible for the prevention and treatment of disease and injury, assisting health care professionals in providing medical care to personnel, conducting preliminary physical examinations and maintaining treatment records.
Varalli is proud to serve in the Pacific and fondly recalls memories of Egg Harbor Township.
"Growing up, I was taught to make friends wherever you go," said Varalli. "The best part of being in the medical field is that you learn fast, and you catch on really quickly."
With more than 50 percent of the world's shipping tonnage and a third of the world's crude oil passing through the region, the United States has historic and enduring interests in the Asian Pacific region. The Navy's presence in Sasebo is part of that long-standing commitment, explained Navy officials.
Yokosuka and Sasebo together are the largest U.S. military treatment facilities in the main section Japan. Branch health annexes are located at Camp Fuji and Hario, while branch health clinics are located in Iwakuni and Atsugi in Japan; Chinhae, Korea, on the southern tip of South Korea; and Diego Garcia in the Indian Ocean.
“You make a difference every day,” said U.S. 7th Fleet Deputy Commander Joey Dodgen. “We are the most prepared, highly trained and the most capable force in the Indo Pacific. Our carriers, amphibious assault ships, aircraft and most importantly, our people, are ready today to face regional challenges and lead our Navy’s forces in this theater, just as the officers and sailors of 7th Fleet have done for 75 years.”
The hospital provides all medical, dental and emergency services. BHC Sasebo strives to be the premier provider of health care to active duty forces and their families in the Indo-Asia-Pacific region through joint partnerships.
"I’ve always wanted to travel, so knowing that I have the opportunity to come here and serve my country was great," Varalli said.
As a member of one of the U.S. Navy’s most relied-upon assets, Varalli and other sailors know they are part of a legacy that will last beyond their lifetimes providing the Navy the nation needs.
"The Navy has made me a better person by the experiences and learning from my shipmates,” Varalli said. "Serving in the Navy allows me to help other people in any way possible. I am definitely accomplishing that being a corpsman. I have always wanted to help people since I was little."
The 7th Fleet, which is celebrating its 75th year in 2018, spans more than 124 million square kilometers, stretching from the International Date Line to the India/Pakistan border; and from the Kuril Islands in the north to the Antarctic in the South. The 7th Fleet's area of operation encompasses 36 maritime countries and 50 percent of the world’s population with between 50 and 70 U.S. ships and submarines, 140 aircraft and about 20,000 sailors.