Questions for guys that served in the military

Hogskin

My style is impetuous, my defenses impregnable.
Joined
Dec 14, 2005
Messages
3,627
Reaction score
261
Points
83
Age
79
The creeps are going into their junior year. Creep #1 is a smart kid - honor roll, AP's all that stuff and is a decent athlete (not that he'd ever go D1 but he could probably bundle the academics with the athletics to get some kind of ride to a D3 or NAIA). He has always been the analytical type and technical things come to him naturally. For a long time it has been his intent to go into some kind of engineering - chemical, electrical, mechanical. The other day he told me that he is thinking hard about going into the Marine Corps after high school.

I have mixed feelings. I often regret that I didn't go into the army way back in the day. I'd even go so far as to say that it is my biggest regret. The other side is I find myself wondering what opportunities he will have if he goes into the Corps. And, frankly, given the state of the world and the way politicians so easily send other people's sons into harms way I'm not wild about him taking that path.

SO... to the folks who have served, can you tell me your experience and whether it is something you would recommend? I'm looking for opinions on all branches of the military.
 

bearclaw

Three Bladed Penetrator
Joined
Mar 5, 2009
Messages
5,980
Reaction score
286
Points
83
Age
43
Location
South Coast Socialist Republic of Kalistan
Him spending time in the service and then going to college will help him a lot if he is unsure, that I can personally vouch for.

There is always the engineering line in the Army, ROTC scholarship to an engineering school and then service as an officer, etc.

I passed up a USMC full ride to UVA and a commission because I thought I was a better wrestler than I was and would get another full ride.


But remember dad, the most dangerous thing you can do is drive to work/ school on the interstate, etc...
 

GUNDOGLOVER

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 25, 2007
Messages
3,900
Reaction score
391
Points
83
Age
72
Location
Lakewood
I served in the Navy 68-72. Without a doubt everything about our military has change so much I don't think I would recognize it today. That being said, I think it should be mandatory to server your country. If he is of the mindset that he has a desire to serve, he needs to be certain that he gets guaranties from the recruiter on schools in his desired field that he will attend after boot camp. I would go for something that would give him a job he can transfer to civilian life after his service is complete. It was a long time ago but I went to ACR school in Norfolk while I was in the Navy. I work in the trade while in the Navy and continued as an A/C mech. for 35 years after I got out. My nephew went to Nuke electronic school for two years, he had to do six years active duty because of the length of the school. He spent the next six years as an instructor. He reenlisted and once again went on as an instructor until they sent him to sea on a nuke aircraft carrier. after 12 years, he got an offer from a private Co. that he could not refuse so he left the Navy and is making a very good living as an engineer at a nuke power plant. If he decides the military is in his future make sure he gets what he wants before he puts his name on the dotted line.
 

'Ike'

Road Trip!
Joined
Mar 2, 2009
Messages
4,272
Reaction score
241
Points
63
Age
59
Location
El Dorado Hills, CA
I did that out of HighSchool...I knew what career path (LawEnforcement) I wanted to follow, but wasn't ready for college...Chose the AirForce for their LE program...Best choice I made in a long run, plus I saw places and did things most will never get to do in their lives...Had my Associates and was on my way to my Bach when I got out...

As BC said, risk in everything....
 

hatchet1

100% AMERICAN & LION KILLER!!!!!
Joined
Feb 23, 2009
Messages
13,445
Reaction score
1,265
Points
113
Location
THE BONEYARD...
I too regret not be able to serve..signed up during George 1 desert Storm..thought I could hide the 2 titanium pins in my hip..no dice..DQ,ed..that being said...#1 & #3 Knuckleheads are very serious about joining the corps..#2 not so much..as said above.. there is risk in everything..i got thier backs whatever they decide..
 

Hunt'EmUp

Member
Joined
Sep 28, 2010
Messages
346
Reaction score
19
Points
18
Location
SoCAL
Looked into it after college, realistically the armed forces can offer alot of training, experience, interships and certifications; that are hard and expensive to get, on your own. I couldn't pass the health certs. Still a friend of mine went into the Army, at that time, she's now a Physicians assistance, board certified; all done on the Army's dime, and will have a highly marketable job once she comes out. When I looked into it the Army had more of the type of training programs suitable to transferring to civilian life, health care, doctor, nurse, CLS, PA, sciences, engineering, then the Air-force, followed by Navy and Marines. As long as you have a goal for when you get out, really not a bad way to get started in life.
 

montana13

Active Member
Joined
Jun 16, 2007
Messages
609
Reaction score
77
Points
28
Does he have the grades to get into the Naval Academy?
 

fish dog

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 24, 2007
Messages
5,372
Reaction score
183
Points
63
Age
65
Location
Huntington Beach, CA
I didn't serve either - (one of my biggest regrets too but I was at the tail end of Vietnam and they had just stopped the draft so I wasn't asked to go and it wasn't something you'd do back then...anyway, back to the subject...) - I remember about maybe 18 years or so ago my son and I had the opportunity to go with a group on a cruise on a Navy Wasp-class amphibious assault ship (USS Boxer LHD-4) from the San Diego Navy Base to the Long Beach Navy Base. While we were at sea the crew had a big steak BBQ on one of the hanger deck elevators. I was talking with one of the people that was with our group and he had brought his near enlistment age son with him. He told me that he wanted to show his son how the Navy did it (his son was looking at the Marines). He said he told his son "what would you rather do, hump a 60-pound pack and a rifle 15 miles through the mud or take an ocean cruise with a steak BBQ?"
 

Ducky's Dad

Active Member
Joined
Nov 16, 2010
Messages
609
Reaction score
90
Points
28
If he really wants to be an engineer, USMC enlistment is not the way to go. The Marines teach you to kill people and break things, not that there's anything wrong with that. He'll probably get better prep for engineering in the Navy or Air Force. If he wants to be a Marine, that's one thing. If he wants to be an engineer, that's something completely different.
 

'Ike'

Road Trip!
Joined
Mar 2, 2009
Messages
4,272
Reaction score
241
Points
63
Age
59
Location
El Dorado Hills, CA
Ducky's Dad said:
If he really wants to be an engineer, USMC enlistment is not the way to go. The Marines teach you to kill people and break things, not that there's anything wrong with that. He'll probably get better prep for engineering in the Navy or Air Force. If he wants to be a Marine, that's one thing. If he wants to be an engineer, that's something completely different.
That does kind of sum it up there...
 

Hogskin

My style is impetuous, my defenses impregnable.
Joined
Dec 14, 2005
Messages
3,627
Reaction score
261
Points
83
Age
79
He is a smart kid - honor roll, AP classes all that stuff. Not sure where he got it, I was a moron in high school. If he didn't bear such a striking resemblance to me at that age I'd probably punch his mother in the nose. I bumped into his chemistry teacher the other day and she said, "I have to tell you, your son Jack is very special, in all my years teaching I've only seen a couple kids like him. I hope he chooses a career in chemical engineering, he's very gifted." So I want him to make good use of it and not waste it.

I think part of the draw for him to be a Marine is he likes to challenge himself, he loves to grind and he sees the Marines as the toughest of the tough. I coach him in football, he's not the annoying kid that goes, "Look how hard I'm working" he just shuts his mouth, puts his head down and works his ass off. Not the most gifted physically but his internal motor is huge. So I know he'd be a great Marine, but should he be?

Thanks for the replies, I appreciate them very much.
 

hank4elk

New Member
Joined
Feb 25, 2009
Messages
2,282
Reaction score
44
Points
0
Age
66
Location
SW Mtns,NM.
I followed family fin steps.
Navy72-74.But did not at sea much in BWN,besides combat . Different world.
Did not take advantage of perc's,promotions. Was just glad I got home.
Should have kept the combat promo & gone to Naval Academy or Kingspoint with the bangles.
Picked my own path by myself.
Buried both my folks @ sea under the Golden Gate. Both WWII Vets,Merchant Marine & Navy. Buried my seabag,papers,uniform & bangles with them.
Still no regrets.
Know one guy I was in basic with who did take advantage & he retired a Commander a few years back. 35 yrs.
 

WinMag1

I'm your Huckleberry!
Joined
Jun 22, 2006
Messages
2,989
Reaction score
40
Points
48
Age
69
Location
Vancouver, WA The Pacific Northwest by way of So.
I served in the Army from 68' to 72' and regret not going to Vietnam. Wasn't my call, it's just that the Army sent me to Germany for 2 1/2 yrs instead. Funny how that works! What I do remember was that I wished I had joined the Air Force. Those guys were treated like kings compared to us. Good luck to whatever your son decides to pursue in his life.
 

Huntndogs

New Member
Joined
Dec 17, 2005
Messages
1,792
Reaction score
20
Points
0
Age
55
Location
San Diego, Ca.
Army 83-86, signed on as an engineer 52F Turbine Engine Generator Repair (make them be specific about what you will be doing) I was trained on the Patriot and Pershing Missle systems and something called a U-Pac which is a turbine engine generator that powers field hospitals (think M.A.S.H.). After basic training, I had a kick ass time. Fired weapons most only get to see on TV, threw hand grenades, rode in tracked vehicles, helo's, transport planes and drove 6X6 2.5 and 5 ton trucks. I also saw parts of the country I would have never seen otherwise. That said, a 20 yr career was not for me and I got out. The discipline and teamwork I learned is priceless and has carried me through my adult life.

That said, the Navy or the Airforce may offer some better technical jobs and in the AF, you can put your hands in your pockets....LOL
 

shadowlawnskysthelimit

Active Member
Joined
Dec 2, 2007
Messages
711
Reaction score
135
Points
43
Location
Whittier, Ca.
Never served, as a young man I had my head too far up my arse to be thinking about others !!
But, as a Army Dad I can't even begin to describe my feelings about my son and how proud we are of him and the man he has become; not to mention the great respect and admiration we have in our hearts for those who serve, veterans and especially their families.
Always was a patriotic guy, but it has grown to something in my wife and I that we never expected !!
From the time our son was little (6-7 yrs. old) he wanted to be a soldier. We thought like all little boys this would pass, but it only grew stronger in him. By the time he was in his early teens he decided he wanted to be a Marine; this did not sit well with us!! I used to tell him "kids that are honors students don't go in the Marine Corp, you go in the Air Force or Naval Acadamy !"
No offense to any Marines it's just that as a parent you are thinking from a different perspective!!
By the time G was ready to sign he decided to go in the Army and become a Green Beret. "Ok we're going in the right direction!! " lol !! This never changed even with the ability to write his ticket to any of the academy's.
It has been 13 years and he has achieved his goals, has been all over the world. Four times to places I pray he never returns to !!
Whatever your son decides stand firmly behind him; the last thing he needs is to have mom and dad not on board with him !! Make the most of every minute with him now and down the road!
Make sure to be part of his recruiting process. So that he doesn't get screwed; have talk to a lot of parents and servicemen who were BS'd into bad decisions.
Wish your son the best; keep us posted with what the future brings !!
 

bearclaw

Three Bladed Penetrator
Joined
Mar 5, 2009
Messages
5,980
Reaction score
286
Points
83
Age
43
Location
South Coast Socialist Republic of Kalistan
Going into the service, getting that wild hair taken care of and then going to college after is not a bad plan.

Most people don't get into their chosen field until early to mid-30's so being a Marine for 4 years if that's what he wants to do and then going to school for something he KNOWS he wants to do and being much more mature and having college paid for is a solid plan.

Once a devil dog, always a devil dog... Very few other groups are as tight as those crayon eating misfits.

He can go USN academy and be a marine too, don't forget that.
 

'Ike'

Road Trip!
Joined
Mar 2, 2009
Messages
4,272
Reaction score
241
Points
63
Age
59
Location
El Dorado Hills, CA
One other example and I'm out! My soon to be son-in-law from San Diego area...Smart kid, Eagle Scout, the whole nine yards...Enlist in the Army after school much to the chagrin of his parents, does a tour, comes back...Army gives so many enlisted appointments to West Point a year! Yup, a shoe in....

Graduates West Point and wants to fly helo's...Send him to Blackhawk school, he's now a Company Commander at the age of 31....You get what you apply yourself to, no matter which service you chose...
 

socal duckie

2014 will be the year!
Joined
Jul 5, 2006
Messages
14,151
Reaction score
418
Points
83
Age
53
Location
imperial valley, ca
shadowlawnskysthelimit said:
Never served, as a young man I had my head too far up my arse to be thinking about others !!
But, as a Army Dad I can't even begin to describe my feelings about my son and how proud we are of him and the man he has become; not to mention the great respect and admiration we have in our hearts for those who serve, veterans and especially their families.
Always was a patriotic guy, but it has grown to something in my wife and I that we never expected !!
From the time our son was little (6-7 yrs. old) he wanted to be a soldier. We thought like all little boys this would pass, but it only grew stronger in him. By the time he was in his early teens he decided he wanted to be a Marine; this did not sit well with us!! I used to tell him "kids that are honors students don't go in the Marine Corp, you go in the Air Force or Naval Acadamy !"
No offense to any Marines it's just that as a parent you are thinking from a different perspective!!
By the time G was ready to sign he decided to go in the Army and become a Green Beret. "Ok we're going in the right direction!! " lol !! This never changed even with the ability to write his ticket to any of the academy's.
It has been 13 years and he has achieved his goals, has been all over the world. Four times to places I pray he never returns to !!
Whatever your son decides stand firmly behind him; the last thing he needs is to have mom and dad not on board with him !! Make the most of every minute with him now and down the road!
Make sure to be part of his recruiting process. So that he doesn't get screwed; have talk to a lot of parents and servicemen who were BS'd into bad decisions.
Wish your son the best; keep us posted with what the future brings !!
X2

Don't be afraid to talk to all branches and get the best deal !!
 

hank4elk

New Member
Joined
Feb 25, 2009
Messages
2,282
Reaction score
44
Points
0
Age
66
Location
SW Mtns,NM.
Annapolis is where Marine & Naval folks go to get a degree, a real degree......and some from every branch try and get one from the SEALS. Most never make it a week.
Marines are right up there with Navy folks in my book,.....some way beyond most any squid I served with.
I served with some great Marines,and we had the Marines front & backs every day.
Sorry,never had much .....to say about Grunts or Air Farce.....LOL
My neice, the AF fighter pilot is going to kick my ass next time she see's me......
 

RTIN

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 9, 2005
Messages
5,448
Reaction score
216
Points
63
Age
52
Location
On the water or in the Marsh.
Check out California Maritime Acadamy.
Sounds like it might be the best of both worlds for him.
Let me know if you need any guidance.
 
Top