Happy Veteran’s Day to all the vets out there! Freedom remembers you.
I was 17 when I entered the Army, well, the National Guard, actually, with my mommy’s permission. If I had to do it again, eh, I would. It was a character-building time in my life and I learned things about myself – what I can do, stand, prevail through – that I otherwise wouldn’t have.
I was 17. The summer between my junior and senior year of high school, I went to basic training on the Guard’s split option program. Fort Jackson’s sands filled my boots more than one day that summer. My dad tried to tell me, “Son, you ain’t gonna like the military.” I thought then that I should’ve listened to my dad. I still have conflicting feelings, really. (Elle Oh Elle!)
I followed in my dad’s footsteps, sort of. He was drafted during the Viet Nam Conflict to the Marines. He was offered E-5 Warrant Officer if he re-uped for four more years and took an MOS (job) of flying helicopters. He declined. And I don’t blame him! He’d have found himself in the heat of Hanoi before he could lace his jump boots.
At any rate, to my dad and my brother – two of my greatest teachers and heroes – Happy Veteran’s Day and thank you for your service!
Until next time, take care and thank a vet!