Stripes and Bars to Stars
In the hip hop genre, rappers often describe how they’ve earned stripes, and sometimes in the next breath say they’re five star generals. This is true, but only with conditions. Someone who transitions from the enlisted ranks to becoming an officer is known as a mustang, and it takes decades for officers to achieve general status.
The US Airman Who Sacrificed His Life to Save a Small English Town
13 November 1943. It was around 8 am in the sleepy town of Princes Risborough, Buckinghamshire, England, when 11-year-old Maureen was awakened by the roaring engines of a B-17 bomber which came uncomfortably close to the roof of her house.
As a young Marine, I was both excited & nervous to go to another country. Of course, as a member of the armed forces, there is a potential for being put in a dangerous environment which heightens the anxiety. Okinawa, Japan, was ordered to be my home for the next three years of my life. While going to a tropical island seems like a paradise, this was not a vacation but a workplace. We were allowed time to enjoy the island on our off time while still adhering to specific guidelines. "You are an ambassador!" was drilled into our heads from before leaving to go overseas. During this allotted free time, there seemed to be some tensions between the Okinawans & U.S military in some places. Others knew that the American army had money which made them all the friendlier. Until now, I did not fully understand these tensions. After reading multiple historical accounts, literature and speaking with some of the locals, I understood the impact of some of the past atrocities. This is why I chose to write about my time in Okinawa versus my other travels. My time spent overseas was the most intense cultural change I've experienced yet. With that, I also found it necessary to raise a bit of awareness regarding cross-cultural experiences.
Memorial Day in Canton, Georgia
About a year and a half ago, I rode through Canton, Georgia with a friend and neighbor on our way to Old Car City. As we were about to pass the Georgia National Cemetery on Hwy 20, he asked if I minded taking a brief detour. Knowing he was a Vietnam Veteran and wanting to see this relatively new memorial, I gladly complied. The entrance road wound through about a mile of wild and natural forest before you come to the second, and real, entrance to the cemetery. A large ornate marble wall and wrought iron gate flanked with American flags greets you as you enter the hallowed grounds.
“Why is she the one doing this? She isn’t even wearing a proper uniform!” The Girl Scout mother didn’t care that Megan and I were near enough to hear her snarky comments.
In 1920, Poland Saved Europe from the Soviets
With the defeat of the German and Austro-Hungarian Empire in the First World War and the collapse of the Russian Empire in the Bolshevik revolution of 1917, the 3 forces occupied Poland since 1795 were extinguished.
Phantoms of the Seas
“Conn, Sonar, we have a surface contact! Designate Sierra Six-One!” The Captain, a trim man with curly blonde hair and grey-blue eyes looked up from the navigation chart at the announcement over the 1MC intercom. He reached for the handset dangling from the low ceiling and keyed it.
The Elusive Merlot
The soldier rubbed his hands together as he stepped out into the crisp, autumn air. The blue hour had just receded, and night had fallen. Smoke from the barrel fires wafted past him in thick clumps. Street lamps lit the path ahead of him, the path that would take him through the cracked concrete streets of Gospic. He turned left of the barracks, tucking his chin into his jacket collar, and then made his way past the football field, the crumbling apartment blocks and finally the government building that stood tall on the corner, unaware of its insignificance in the grand scheme of the world. He nodded to passing locals, parents of friends he had known since high school, relatives he actively avoided interacting with unless he was forced to at family engagements.
Divided By Duty
In a military relationship, service always comes first; what is it like to share your spouse, partner or significant other with the armed forces?
The A-List, Enlisted
Famous figures in the forces; all about the household names that spent time in uniform.
Back on the Homefront
The adjustment from active duty to civilian life is rife with joy, emotion and challenges alike. Ponder the true nature of post-army homecomings and the reality of transitioning from soldier to veteran.
Memoirs of a School Boy During the Second World War
In 1939 when the Second World War began, Alan Edwards was six years old, living with his parents and brother on a farm near Oswestry in Shropshire, England. It was an exciting time for the young lad. As wartime activities escalated, he saw German bomber planes pass close to his home on their way to attack the Liverpool docks — a strategically important location in the British war effort.
The WWII Female Pilot Who Is Still Missing
Gertrude Vreeland “Tommy” Tompkins was born on October 16, 1912, in Jersey City, New Jersey. She was the youngest child of Laura and Vreeland Tompkins — the founder of Smooth-On Inc.
How To Replace AR Handguards With Rails
The AR-15, America's most popular contemporary sports rifle, has improved significantly in the last decade. The age of simple plastic handguards has come to an end. It's cool to upgrade your AR-15 handguards to a rail system.
Love Your Footstool
“It says your enemies will be made your footstools.” “It also says you should love your enemies…twice. And to aid and abet them to boot.”
Although now retired, I loved my job in the United States Army. Having served over twenty years (consisting of seven active years and thirteen years in the National Guard), I progressed through the ranks from Private (E-1) to Master Sergeant (E-8). I had deployed to non-hostile areas such as Saudi Arabia and Kuwait, to full combat zones of both Iraq and Afghanistan. Though only certified in three different jobs, throughout the years I had held my share of hats, to include: Infantry, Cavalry, Communications, Logistics, Operations, Food Service, Supply, Transportation, and Security.
What Veterans Should Know About the Agent Orange Settlement Fund
The latest medical research adds a steady stream of new research on diseases that can be traced to Agent Orange exposure. Unfortunately, many veterans fail to keep up with this new data and information.
What Inspires The Air and Sea Shows?
Mickey D. Markoff is an innovator in the event production space. With decades of experience in the industry, he has been producing air and sea shows across the nation since 1995. A pioneer in aviation event production, Mickey Markoff introduced corporate sponsorship to the field in Chicago before bringing the concept to the air and sea shows in South Florida.
Ninety Two and Still Cool
Ray (Great Grandpa) Richmond Memoir Words: 569 NINETY TWO AND STILL COOL One of the many blessings of turning ninety-two, is when my own kids and grandkids will say to me. “Yeah dad, or yeah grandpa, you might be ninety two, but you’re still cool.”
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