This post is about 4 weeks late, but I'm back from Basic and AIT. Most of you who read this blog are well aware of this fact, but I figured I had to blog about it to make it official.
I graduated and received my castle on December 4th, 2009. I am a combat engineer and damn proud of that fact.
Combat engineers perform a number of different jobs in the Army, but for the last few years the majority of them have focused on route clearance. This basically means finding and destroying IED's. Engineers are also used to breach doors or walls using explosives, shotguns and chainsaws. Engineers also set up security barriers/razor wire to protect operating bases.
AIT covered all of these things plus mine detection, personnel searches and a few other things.
Basic was difficult and I'm proud I completed it. It was harder than I anticipated and I definitely pushed a few of my limits. However, it was never impossible and with the support of my battle buddies, I always felt ready to take on the next challenge.
Now that I've completed Basic and AIT, I have my regular Guard duty of one weekend a month and two weeks a year. This month and February I will drill with my RSP unit at Tupelo. I will then be handed off to my new Engineer Unit in Houston, MS and will begin training with them.
I was lucky enough to have 2 battle buddies in my platoon who will also be in the Houston unit, so I'll at least know a few people when I start.
I'm unsure about deployment, but I think the Houston unit just got back in 2008 from Iraq, which means it should be 2012 before they are deployed again. Of course given today's environment, anything could happen.
I'm still working on adjusting a little to a weekend warrior lifestyle, but easing into being home with my family took no adjustment at all.
I plan on blogging about how incredible everyone has been towards me and my family, so for now I just want to say "thanks" to everyone for everything.