Harbin (DDG 112) entering San Diego harbor (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Yup instead the college experience I had the military experience. It was the late seventies. For lots of reasons I was not headed to college.
Back then it was a time where girls did not think of joining the military after high school. So after lots of trail and error.
I passed the written test. Got the notes from doctors and in the middle of what is now know around here as the “blizzard ” of 78 I left for boot camp.
Because of all the snow I left three times for boot camp. Boot camp was in Orlando Florida. Florida was wet, cold and fun. Boy was I glad I had been in marching band.
Marching was easy. No one yelled at me while marching. The swimming test was easy too. That day was really cold. We climbed to the top of the high diving board, jumped in and swam
to the end of the pool. Thats all. I have even taken part and put a gun back together.
In the late 70’s early 80′ women were just starting to be stationed on ships. But only certain ships.
It was a really big deal to be one of the first women on certain ships. I did my time on shore.
Sandy a Navy friend did make it on a ship. She went with the second round of females.
Her area aboard ship was tiny, but she seemed to really like it.
I ended up being a mess management specialist. That was the Navy’s way of saying cook.
It was long hours. Where ever you were stationed the work was different. On occasion I still say your tax dollars taught me to cook.
Whenever I was home, my mom would have me make her an omelet. I cooked omelets at two different places.
For awhile I was a part of funeral detail. The women did the twenty-one gun salute. Guys carried the casket.
My military experience is pretty tame compared to the twenty-first century. Other than boot camp I was in California.
The country was at peace. Most of my family was shocked I would want to serve.
I served when changes were being made for women.
Yes I am a veteran. Happy Veteran Day!