TMCC Veteran of the Month - March 2011
Computer Technologies Instructor
I grew up just south of Washington D.C. in Fairfax, Virginia. As a youth, I was very familiar with all the iconic symbols of our nation's capital. I stood and watched the changing of the guards at Arlington Cemetery and wondered how those soldiers could do what they did -- come rain or shine, cold or heat. I was very moved by the Iwo Jima memorial depicted the raising of our flag on Mount Suribachi. I roamed the grounds at Mount Vernon and as a teenager, I lived outside of Philadelphia and spent many lazy warm days walking the hills of Valley Forge. I was very patriotic and wanted to serve when I grew up.
I suppose to join the military when I came of age was as natural as eating breakfast. So during my junior year in college, I signed up for the two-year ROTC program and spend part of the next summer at Fort Knox. Upon graduating with a bachelor's degree in communications, I was assigned to the Field Artillery branch in the Army. My wife and I decided to put in for service in Germany (West Germany then).
So with my wife and two children, we flew to Germany and for the next three years we lived on a small post about an hour southeast of Frankfurt. My first duty was to be a fire direction (FDO) officer, but I was made the battery executive officer of a firing battery. My battalion used the M110A1 (8 inch) self-propelled howitzer. They were also capable of firing a nuclear round down range. We called it the "Golden BB". As fait would have it, I spent a great deal of my time as the battalion special weapons officer in charge of many such Golden BBs. That was a time when we were at relative peace and the government was taking away benefits and reducing personnel. I was promoted to 1st lieutenant and was later on the list for captain, but decided to exit the military and pursue life as a civilian. So we came home, I resigned my commission and spent the next 13 years running restaurants. In the end I became the operations vice president for a chain of restaurants but decided it took too heavy a toll on my family.
We (wife and four children) moved from Virginia to Las Vegas and started a golf charity tournament business and decided to go to school to learn computers. Eventually I earned a few certification in computers and worked in the computer industry for several years. I landed a job teaching computers for the University of Phoenix. I was then transferred to Reno and spent the next four and one half years with Phoenix and took advantage of their education program and earned a master of science degree in computer information systems. In January 2006, I was hired by TMCC to teach the A+ computer course and have been here ever since.
Our children are grown now and my two sons are veterans. One is a Marine captain; the other one went into the Air Force. Both have been deployed in the Global War on Terrorism. Once, they were both deployed at the same time, one in Afghanistan the other in Iraq. We had some sleepless nights for about eight months.
I am proud to be a veteran and proud of all who serve. I am proud of TMCC and the wonderful opportunities we afford our veterans. I am proud to serve our military veteran here on campus.
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