A Gentleman and a Rogue

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Veterans Day




Hi all. Most of you know I served in the Army from 1986-1997. I joined a Private E-1 and left a Staff Sergeant E-6. I was an MP and proud to be one, too. And while my time in the military was low key, I thought I'd share my thoughts and memories on my time in the military.

From Wikipedia:
Veterans Day is an annual United States holiday honoring military veterans. A federal holiday, it is observed on November 11. It is also celebrated as Armistice Day or Remembrance Day in other parts of the world, falling on November 11, the anniversary of the signing of the Armistice that ended World War I. (Major hostilities of World War I were formally ended at the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month of 1918 with the German signing of the Armistice.)


US President Woodrow Wilson declared the Holiday on 11 NOV 1919.


I joined the US Army on 8 JULY 1986, one month after I turned 18. My reasons for joining the military at such a tender age were varied, yet very real to me. Quite honesty, I had no prospects. I wanted to go to college, but I had no money. I wanted to get away from my mother, I wanted to see "the world" while I was young, not old. I did my Basic Training and Advanced Individual Training at Ft. McClellan, AL, home of the MP Corp. Now, I believe the MP Corp is at Ft. Leavenworth in KS.

Me in Tazsur, Hungary receiving an Award.

I was sent to Germany in DEC 1986 and my first assignment was at the 583rd Ordnance company. It was certainly an eye-opening experience! I fell in love with Germany and Europe. I went on several volksmarches (which is a another blog post onto itself!) I went to Berlin in 1988 before the wall fell, and I went to Salzburg, Austria, Garmish, and Berchesgarden. I spent a year in Romulus, NY at the 295th MP Co and then I went to MPI school. In NOV 1989, I was sent back to Germany where I was stationed at Fulda and Bad Hersfeld in support of the 11th ACR. I saw the Berlin Wall Fall and I was there when Germany was united as a nation on 3 OCT 1990. Gulf War I broke out, but my unit stayed in Germany. My fiance deployed to Kuwait in June 1991. (after major combat was done) After a tour at Ft. Irwin I went back to Germany in 1995. I deployed to Hungary in the summer of 1997 in support of the peacekeeping efforts in Bosnia.

My time in the military was full of highs and lows, (like failing my PT tests and doing remedial PT, but even then I learned I had to work harder to get what I wanted) but the rich experiences have made me a better person. I got my college education, graduating with a BS from California Baptist University in 1995. I've done things and seen things most people that age usually don't. I know the hardship and loneliness many have when away from loved ones during the holidays. I know the sacrifice.

To those who have served in the military, thank you for your service. I'm proud to be a veteran.

Smiles
Steph

20 comments:

  1. Thanks for your service to our country, Steph. You military folks are awesome!

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  2. We owe you a huge "thank you," Steph. My father was in the Air Force so as long as he was, so was I, even if I never received credit. Therefore, I have an excellent idea of what "serving" means.

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  3. Loved this post. My son fought in the iraq war. He was injured and pensioned out at 21. But at least he came home.

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  4. What memories you have to share with your children! Thank you, Steph and all the veterans, for your time, bravery, and sacrifice.

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  5. Definitely Thank You for your sacrifice and bravery Stephanie! This is a fascinating post! I would love to hear more any time you want to post it!
    Patti

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  6. Boy Steph, you joined young. But I'm sure you grew up in a hurry during your boot camp and learned so much at that time. What an eye oopener. We are very proud to know you Steph and salute you for being there for your country.

    My grandson joined the Marines, he's on a ship right now, and we aren't sure where, but he did have one exciting time, he and his fellow unit are the ones that captured the pirates recently, without one casualty. I can't wait till he gets home to tell us about it.

    My husband was in the Air Force for six years.

    I appreciate all of the armed forces and hope they all come home safely.

    Love and blessings
    Rita

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  7. Steph, and thank you for your service!

    I still find it interesting that we were in Germany at the same time and have crossed paths in so many places since. ;-)

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  8. Steph,
    Thank you so much for your service! Your reasons for enlisting were very interesting and they are probably the reasons many young people enlist.

    My husband enlisted in the service way back in 1959 when his mother died and he had no other resources. He also became an MP and was stationed in France.

    I thank everyone who has served or is still serving our country! Happy Veterans Day.

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  9. Steph, I am SO PROUD OF YOU. You are a good example to give to our children.

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  10. Thank you to everyone who posted. I can't thank you enough for sharing your thoughts and memories, and your stories about your loved ones. Every story is to be cherished. Lionsmother, how exciting - to be an MP in France. I asked the recruiter if I could go to France, but he said the US Army left France in 1966.

    Smiles
    Steph
    (sadly getting ready for work...)

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  11. Hi Steph,

    Wonderful post! Thank you for your service - you're such a wonderful person and are appreciated for everything you and all the other military people did and still do for us ordinary individuals.

    God bless you and your husband.

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  12. Proud to know you, hon! :)
    Sheryl (UK)
    xx

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  13. Thanks for sharing Steph! I still remember when you first joined and came back to visit us on leave!

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  14. Great post! Thanks for your service. Our country wouldn't be the same without folks like you--folks who are willing to give up so much for those here on the home front. We are blessed!

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  15. Thank you, for your service. You have seen and been to some fascinating places. Great post.

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  16. Coming in late, but I also wanted to thank you for your service to our country. God bless all active duty and veterans.

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  17. Bless you, Steph. Thanks for sharing your story with us. My brother was an MP in WWII, stationed in Egypt, where he met his wife. Love the pictures.

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  18. Thank you so much for popping and sharing your stories. They are wonderful to hear. I got a special treat at work - the seniors boughts us vets dinner. It was sweet.

    Smiles
    Steph

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