Published : Wednesday, April 25, 2018 | 8:07 PM
A former U.S. Navy aviation ordnanceman who’s now serving as communications officer at the Pasadena City College Veterans Club was honored Wednesday as the Military Hero of the Game as the Los Angeles Dodgers concluded a six-game homestand by playing host to the Miami Marlins at Dodger Stadium.
Joseph Amador is now a history major at PCC. He joined the Navy in 2008, right out of high school, and spent most of his time aboard the aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln as a “mag rat” – the term used to describe U.S. Navy ordnancemen – when it deployed in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. Later, he was assigned to the U.S. Navy Munitions Command CONUS West Division.
While stationed on the carrier, Amador built bombs and rockets, while also maintaining torpedoes, aerial mines and missiles.
“I worked with kind of ‘it all,’” Amador told the PCC Courier, the official PCC student publication. “From small arms to the 50 cal., M240, and the smallest bomb being around 500 pounds to probably the largest bomb being 2000 pounds.”
After his four years of Navy service, Amador, a Monrovia resident, transitioned back into the civilian world. Now at PCC for two years, he works with veterans at PCC as well as at Cal Poly Pomona and the American Legion. He continues to reach out to other vets and clubs on campus, participates in all the events and makes sure the Veterans Club is being heard.
“We need someone with a voice like his,” PCC Veterans Club President Edwin Lopez told the PCC Courier about the time they were looking for a communications officer for the Club. “He likes to talk with people, very charismatic and a hard charger as well.”
In March 2016, Amador was chosen as PCC’s Veteran of the Month. Fellow vets see him as having a “spark that brings out dedication and passion,” the PCC Courier said.
“He is a great leader…he has helped the club with volunteer work, fundraisers and won our shirt and logo design contest,” Veterans’ Club treasurer and Amador’s good friend Mark Castanon said. “He is a great asset for us veterans and the school as a whole.”
Amador wants to continue his education in history and hopes to transfer to Texas State University to study marine archaeology.