Originally Published: November 10, 2015 8:40 p.m.
Dates of service in the U.S. military: December 1992 - October 2014
Branch of service: U.S. Navy
Military rank: E-5
College wasn't going that great, due to my fault and I needed to really do something with my life. So I joined the Navy in 1992 after my cousin did a few months before. My father served for USMC and went to MCRD San Diego in 1958. I was one of the last companies going through the San Diego boot camp 1992-93, plus was right next door where my father had served ... cool eh? I was assigned to the USS Saratoga (CV-60) in Mayport, Florida, for two years. In January 1994, the Bosnian conflict flared up. We were deployed to the Adriatic Sea for six months doing Operations: Sharp Guard, Provide Promise & Deny Flight. I worked on the flight deck, sometimes at night, which was a tough job. Other times I controlled the hydraulic and air pressure to the arresting cable wires while catching "birds" (aircraft) such as the famous F-14 Tomcats & F-18 Hornets. After being honorably discharged, I returned to Phoenix in December 1994, I immediately joined the Navy Reserves, where I served till 2014. I was deployed several times during the time I served in the Navy Reserves including a Presidential Recall as a police officer five weeks after 9/11 for one year, six months in Germany working for NATO Headquarters, three months at Arizona State University starting the new Navy ROTC program, 111 days at the Naval War College/Naval Academy Prep School, duty in Korea and Singapore - too many to name. I have five DD-214's serving in 16 different countries. To maintain the freedom for my family and fellow Americans, I'd do it all over. Go Navy, beat Army!