Why do they do that?

The wife and I went to a Veteran’s Day ceremony at my Granddaughter’s grade school the other day. It was very well done and I was thrilled to be there with so many veterans of all ages. But, you know, when you have veterans, the phonies are never far behind.

As I was getting a coffee, I was greeted by a man of about early to mid thirties vintage. As all veterans seem to do, I said hello and asked him which branch and when he did his duty. Quick as a wink, I was stunned to find myself in the presence of a “Special Forces” soldier. He laid claim to being an Airborne Ranger, Green Beret, and perhaps Delta Force all in the same sentence. “Gosh,” I said to myself, this is one bad dude. I wonder if he might also be one of those “secret SEALS” one hears about.

As it happens, I have a VERY close relative who is undergoing training in one of the fields that this “stud” mentioned. “Operational Security'” (OPSEC) precludes me from details. Those of you who know me are aware of whom I speak. I told this gentleman about my relative to which he instantly asked if he had been through “hell week” yet. I informed him that hell week was an activity done by the SEALS. My relative had already been through an equivalent experience. “Oh, they must have changed it since I went through,” he observed. It was at this point that my suspicions were raised.

He talked rapid fire about his super-human qualifications then asked me if my relative had experienced the sheep drill yet. I was not aware of any drills involving sheep and said so. (I’m not making this up). It seems that at some point during the training my relative is in, he will be taken to a very remote wilderness location and dropped off. At that time, he will be given a sheep that has been stabbed I think he said seven times. It is the soldier’s task to traverse the wilderness terrain back to safety all the while doctoring and keeping the wounded sheep alive. If the sheep perishes, the soldier fails the course. I promise you, I am not making this up. My wife heard it too.

Where do these people come from? I had to walk away.

Veteran’s Day

Today is Veteran’s Day. As I write, there are two Emmetts on active duty. My nephew (1SG) is stationed in Alaska and my youngest son (2LT) is in training in Georgia. My wife served three years on active duty. Our daughter did her duty in the Air Force Reserve and our other son did his time in the Army Reserve. My brother did seven(?) years in the Army. I did 21+ years on active duty, also in the Army. There is an Emmett on the east coast that we have lost track of that served in the Air Force. I suspect his dad also did his duty though not sure when or where.

Looking back further, my dad was Navy in WWII and Marines in Korea. Karen’s dad likewise served in the Army in WWII and Korea(?). My grandfather and a great uncle served in the Army in World War I. There are some cousins that served though that is still being researched. One of them we know served in North Africa in WWII. I know there were two Emmetts that served in Infantry Regiments in the Union Army during the Civil War.

So, why am I telling you all this? I am prouder than words can convey of the history the Emmett clan has with the military. Today a lot of people will tell a lot of vets “thanks for serving.” Maybe it is we vets who should be thanking you.

I tell anybody who will listen that there are three reasons why I am alive today. 1) Salvation given to me by My Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ 2) The “tender mercies” of the Unites States Army and 3) The love of my dear wife.

I am grateful to the Army and its influence on my life. So, in keeping with the day and on behalf of the entire Emmett clan,

Thank you, America, for letting us serve.