Commentary

December 5, 2013

A 10 year decision

Tags:
Commentary by Airman 1st Class C. Massey
355th Fighter Wing Public Affairs
Commentary_pict
Airman 1st Class Chris Massey holds his son, Mason, while hugging his wife, Sarah after an Air Force basic military training graduation at Lackland Air Force Base, Texas, Feb. 28, 2013. Massey arrived at BMT 26 days before his 28th birthday and believes that age doesn’t define a person, rank or position because everyone who has joined the military committed to serve our country.

When most people decide to join the military, it’s usually right after high school. They don’t seriously consider joining active duty military at 27 years of age.

As someone who arrived at basic military training 26 days before his 28th birthday, I know all too well that there are reasons for joining ten years later than most.

When I was 17, I visited U.S. Army and Air Force recruiters. Quickly, I decided on the Air Force, as my grandfather, stepfather and cousin had done before me, with my parents’ blessing.

I proceeded to take the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery test and scored well enough to impress the recruiter. All that was left was signing my name and swearing in.

I had a moment of doubt that made me question whether or not I was ready. “Why was I joining? What have I done with my life up to this point? What are my other options? Am I ready for this commitment?” I asked myself these questions over and over.

The doubt was too much to ignore so I called the disappointed recruiter to tell him that I had changed my mind.

As each year passed, I wondered, “What if I had joined?” and “Is now the time?”

Over the next 10 years, I married the love of my life and had a healthy baby boy. I had been working the same job for eight years with no chance of advancement and my options in the job market without a degree seemed bleak.

At 27-years old, I had to wonder if it was too late.

I contacted the local recruiter and the first question I asked him about was the age limit for joining active duty. Upon hearing that I only had four months left on the clock, I knew I had a decision to make. It was now or never.

I chose now.

Now 11 months into my military career, I am a 28-year-old airman first class, making me as much as 10 years older than my peers. This will remain a fact for the rest of my military career.

In my opinion, age does not define a person, rank or position because all of us committed to serve our country. We were all taught the same core values and are held to the same standards.

The extra years of personal life experience should be an advantage for me because I feel like I may be better prepared to handle many different situations.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 

Local Briefs July 2, 2015

Sunset Horseback Ride August 8, 4 – 8 p.m. – Outdoor Rec Saddle up and enjoy a 2-hour sunset horseback ride through the Saguaro National Park. Single Airmen can sign-up beginning July 6. All others may sign-up beginning July 13. Final deadline is July 31. Minimum age: 18. Cost of $25/person. Call 228-3736 for more...
 
 
(U.S. Air Force photos by Airman 1st Class Chris Massey)

F-15E Strike Eagle students complete training at D-M

Student pilots from Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, N.C., have been training here since June 17. Fourteen F-15E Strike Eagles from the 334th Fighter Squadron, as well as pilots and Weapons Systems Officers came to D-M to com...
 
 

D-M’s Fourth of July Celebration

For July 4, D-M is scheduled to hold a few evening events to celebrate the holiday. Shuttles for the fireworks are scheduled to start running at 5:30 p.m. from Heritage Park, the Sonoran Science Academy and Borman Elementary School. Pre-firework events are slated to begin at 6 p.m. at Bama Park featuring live music by...
 

 

Giving life through the Living Donor Program

  As Airmen, it is our responsibility to help each other, as well as our civilian counterparts from day to day. But what if the need was greater than something as simple as a ride to work? What if it was as great as a kidney donation? Located in Sacramento, Calif., The University of California...
 
 

Balancing career, family through career intermission program

  KADENA AIR BASE, Japan (AFNS) — Being in the U.S. military can be a tough balance between career and family. For some, it comes down to a choice between the two; however, for Katie Evans, a temporarily separated captain and the former 18th Force Support Squadron manpower and personnel flight commander here, it’s about...
 
 

One AWACS lands at D-M for Boneyard Storage

One NATO E-3A AWACS (Airborne Warning and Control System) departed NATO Air Base Geilenkirchen, Germany and landed around 1 p.m. June 23, for storage in the ‘Boneyard’. This is the first ever NATO AWACS to be retired. The decision to retire one E-3A was made by the North Atlantic Council in an effort to modernize the...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>