By Tara Tung

For service members training at Pohakuloa Training Center (PTC), the USO center on base is the only place to kick back, relax and connect with friends and family.

“Prior to the set up of the USO, there was absolutely no phone or cell service, no internet service, and there nothing else to do … to keep the soldiers [and] Marines occupied, except for training,” USO PTC center manager Jody Brissette said.

According to U.S. Army Hawaii, PTC is the premier military training area in the Pacific region because it offers realistic training opportunities not found elsewhere. 

The USO center on PTC – a 133,000-acre base formerly known as Pohakuloa Training Area – is a place where service members can get some down time, meet other service members outside of their unit, connect to Wi-Fi, play video games, watch movies and contact their family and friends.

Depending on the size of the units training, PTC can be go from total desolation one day with thousands of troops rotating in the next. Brissette, a retired soldier, and his team are on duty to make sure troops visiting the installation have the connections to family, home and country they need to stay focused on their mission.

–USO Director of Content Strategy Chad Stewart and USO Content Strategy Manager Sandi Moynihan contributed to this story.