An Airman's Story

Enlistment, 4 big choices

Enlisting into military service was definitely something I was destined to do. I remember thinking about the choices before me and the very uneducated decision I was trying to make; which branch of the service should I join?

Army; I spoke with the Army recruiter a couple times. I really wanted to be a helicopter pilot but the recruiter could not guarantee it in writing. He said that if I joined the Army into a guaranteed avionic field then I could work up to be a pilot in a few years; translation, “join now and get shafted for 4 years.” I told him thanks but no thanks.

Marines; The Marine recruited came to my house dressed all out in his best uniform and looked very sharp. I greeted him on the front porch and his opening line was something to the effect of “you’ll get lots of pussy in this uniform.” He never made it past the front porch and I thanked him for his time.

Navy; They sent out two very sharp middle aged men who as I remember were Senior NCO types. They offered me a great deal, 4 years of college paid for and I would even get paid while going to school. All that I would owe the Navy after that is 8 years on an aircraft carrier or nuclear submarine. In my young mind I could just not get past the 12 years of my life being promised away for something I may hate. I tossed it around for days then decided it was time to talk to the Air Force.

Air Force; I was already pretty determined at this point to join the Air Force. I had family that had served in the Air Force to include my Dad and Grandfather. My journey into the Air Force would not be as easy to start as I thought. I contacted the recruiter but for some reason he had trouble setting up an appointment. Seems he was too busy smoking pot and doing pre-MEPS physicals with the female recruits, he was fired and kicked out of the service. The next guy, SSgt Ronald Alvey, was a very sharp guy who answered all my questions and DID NOT LIE about anything. A lot of people think that recruiters lie; truth is the new recruits just don’t know what questions to ask. Recruiters don’t lie; they just don’t volunteer the hard side voluntarily. After a few meetings and a trip to the MEPS I was signed up in the Air Force!