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Sunday, April 13, 2008

6x2: Complete!

Eight years ago today I signed the dotted line on a contract that would provide me with experiences I wouldn’t otherwise had. I, like so many others did at the time, joined the National Guard for the college tuition benefits. I had no idea what the next eight years would hold for me, but I needed a way to pay for college. The contract included six years of National Guard drill status and two years of inactive status. For the brides out there I have a side note for you. During my basic training Sarah planned 100% of our wedding. We married a few months after I completed training. After my basic training was complete I settled into a one weekend a month routine. Then September 11th happened. As we all know that changed everything. I was called to active duty and spent nearly a year deployed to Kuwait and Iraq. I don’t know how Sarah ever survived without me. After returning I also deployed to Mississippi for hurricane relief. I wouldn’t trade these past eight years for anything. Those people I met and placed I lived make me who I am today. I also want to mention that today is my younger sister’s birthday. I was totally unintentional that I would raise my right hand on her birthday, but at least this way I will never forget her birthday. With all of that said, I thought today I would share a few photos of my past eight years with you. Oh, and one shot of me and my sister on my birthday!

I was fortunate to have Sarah come to visit me while I was in basic training.

This is a picture of Sarah and I just after my basic training graduation ceremony.

This is a shot from one of our many visits with some Iraqi people. This family actually lives in a tent! They invited us to share in some tea in their tent. They are a very humble people.

Just for fun I thought I would stand next to a camel. You would think this would be a common event, but it isn't often that one is on a leash. The owner of this particular camel actually wanted to charge me $20 to ride it. Not going to happen, sorry.

Our unit returned just before Veteran's Day. We proudly participated in the Veteran's Day parade that was held downtown Indianapolis.

This picture was taken a very long time ago. It is the only image I have of my sister when we were young. Since it is her birthday today, I wanted to put a picture of her on my blog. This was taken on my birthday, but it is a picture of a birthday party and she happens to be in it. Oh, and who didn't want a Knight Rider bike! I loved that bike!


Mrs. Shoemaker said...

Knight Rider?? I loved that show! Happy belated Birthday to your sister!