In the Navy

Looking back at 1986, there were things going on in my life that I had dismissed and have not thought about in some time until now.
I was a year out of high school, living at home and taking general prerequisite courses at Anderson College. I found myself in a spot where I had absolutely no clue or direction with college and a career.

I was closely watching my brother’s new life as he was in a Navy F-14 squadron and touring the Far East onboard a carrier.  I imagined it adventurous being so far away and so different from everything I knew. I remember not telling anyone that I was going to talk to a Navy Recruiter. After meeting a few times and discussing career opportunities, I knew I wanted to join too. I took various career assessment tests to see what I may qualify for and enjoy.  I was interested in the Navy’s nuclear propulsion school, but inevitably, I decided to sign up for the Electronic Warfare program.  I went through a swearing in process and was now a part of the Navy’s Delayed Entry Program (DEP). I was then waiting to officially join and start boot camp in Orlando. I remained at college, worked out preparing for the Navy and spent time with friends and family.

Musically I remember the Clash *and* Black Flag broke up that year. I was all over the place with music that I liked, but at the time I really liked big hair metal. Many good albums rolled out including Master of Puppets, Turbo, Who Made Who, Somewhere in Time, Rage for Order, Intermission and Peace Sells… But Who’s Buying?

There were things in 1986 that I don’t remember like the Mir space station was launched by the Soviet Union. Geraldo Rivera accesses Al Capone’s highly secret vault, only to find a bottle of moonshine. I had no idea that Uranus was first probed by Voyager 2.

There were things that I did remember: the Iran-Contra Affair, the Chernobyl nuclear disaster, the loss of the Challenger. I remember President Reagan signed the Goldwater–Nichols Act. He also met with Mikhail Gorbachev discussing missile inventories in Europe.

Compared to 1986, my life has changed considerably. I have my wonderful wife Louanne, I have bills, responsibilities, and enjoying working to be the best possible dad to my 15-week-old son, Luke.  I have a great career in the electronics industry, and I am involved with a company that I am very proud to be a part of.

Today I still like hard rock/metal but I have mellowed out a bit and primarily listen to a medley of 70s, 80,s rock-blues type music. As usual, formative years are hard to let go of.  Every once in a while, my wife will get in the car and turn the key and Maiden or something radical will blast out at her.

One of the things I miss from 1986 was the simplicity of the time itself in my life.  I remember and miss the excitement of something fresh and big coming – The Navy. The main thing that I have not forgotten that I miss most about my life from 1986 is my best friend, my brother Gus.

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