Yesterday, my family & I turned and walked away from a great job. For the last six years, I have been an active-duty JAG in the US Air Force. I worked hard at understanding my job and I even occasionally called it my hobby. But over time I have come to realize that I want to spend less time in Iraq and more time with my family.
My family has had to make sacrifices. Everybody I worked with in the Air Force knows about making sacrifices, and my family is no stranger to the sacrifices. In my six years in, I have not been home for 3 of my son’s birthdays. On three of his birthdays, I was on a trip. For two of them, the family had come along, so we just celebrated in the hotel room. But one was in the middle of a nine-week training in Alabama. I missed my daughter’s birthday when I was in Iraq one year. My wife and I have grown stronger while in the Air Force, but it was in spite of the Air Force’s demands, not because of them.
I don’t want to complain about the sacrifices we have made when I know that MSgt Randy Gillespie and his family made the ultimate sacrifice for his country this past July.
I worked with too many great people to list them all here. I worked with commanders who were smart and understood their obligations and took the time to make sure they had the best advice they could get before they made decisions. I have worked with first sergeants who really understood people and I gained so much from their wisdom and insight. I got to work with federal agents from the Air Force Office of Special Investigations who were also very smart, hard-working, and wanted to find the truth; they didn’t just seek convictions. I thank God for the opportunity I have had to work with each of them. My Mom always told me that when I meet someone and then leave, I take a piece of that person with me. I am thankful for the opportunity to have met all of these people and made them a part of who I am.
I have even worked with great people from within the legal offices. I even met one person whose email address is ‘honestjag’ if you can believe that. Seriously, there are alot of honest folks out there working as lawyers in the Air Force. The lawyers and paralegals I have met are now scattered around the globe. Again, there are too many to list, but I feel that I have truly worked with some of the finest people in the world.