I graduated from high school in Ellenburg Depot , NY, in 1969. I knew the draft lottery was happening soon and I might become elgible for possible infantry time in the Army. Military duty was not new to our family, as my uncles were serving at the time. Some had served during WW2. I knew I wanted to do some kind of service too.

I enlisted in the Navy before I graduated with a 2 month delay before reporting to Great Lakes. I graduated Basic then picked up Class A Ordnance School in Jacksonville, Florida. Graduated from A School then went off to VA 174 training squadron at Cecil Field, Fla. Next assignment was VA 37 Attack Squadron assigned to aircraft carrier Saratoaga, where I was assigned Aviation Ordnance. Low and behold, Vietnam here we go.

Our Carrier Air Group pulled duty at Yankee Station, Gulf of Tonkin for the duration of our tour there. I worked the flight deck. I was pretty apprehensive trying to figure out how to not get blown over the side or sucked down an air intake on one of our jets, but I survived. Got quite an education at the time on how to keep your head out of your ###. Proud of my service and always proud to stand among other veterans.