Friday, July 23, 2010

CH-BOLC

It has been a while since my last post, we have been extremely busy. I have done things I didn't think I could possibly do, guess that is why some of the courses are called "Confidence Courses." I made it through the Victory Tower without too many problems, only fell once. I was moving along good on the rope and next thing I know I was bouncing off the net. I enjoyed rappelling down the wall, that was cool. My days seem to run together during training. Some of this won't be in order but you can see what I have been up to. The pic below was just before the day infiltration course. Talk about hot! It was 95 degrees before lunch that day. All that extra gear made it a few degrees hotter that day. I think we had three or four soldiers go to the hospital with heat injuries that day. All in all it wasn't a bad day, it was just hot. The training was good though. We had some down time in between training sessions and we had some entertainment from the Chaplains and Chaplain Candidates telling jokes. The coolest thing about that day of training was the night infiltration course. We went through that training with a group of soldiers going through basic training. It was pretty rough crawling that far in the sand. There was explosions all around us and machine gun fire zooming over our heads. We could see the tracers flying over top of us. I was beat at the end of that crawl. Slept good that night. That was one of those nights when you get in the shower with your clothes and boots on. Makes things much simpler.

Victory Tower was really cool. First time rappelling for me!



















We had a few freeze up going off the top of the rappelling wall. That first step is a rough one. Once you get going it is pretty smooth .


Continuing were I left off, I started this post several months ago. Each time I try to download it is locks up. Let's try it again. Below is a video from Victory Tower. It was a good time.



video

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Drill and Ceremony Competition

Saturday we had the drill and ceremony competition. 2nd Platoon was the winner. We received a ribbon for our platoon flag and we have a week off from being duty platoon. The competition was really close. All of the platoons worked hard for the ceremony. A lot of hot hours training in the parking lot. Drill Sergeant had us "picking cherries." Our arms were worn out!!!!!

video
Here is a video of 3rd or 4th Platoon during part of the D and C competition. It was fun, everyone enjoyed the competition.

CH-BOLC CIMT Week 2

Another week is complete, just two more weeks of CIMT. This past week was a busy week and next week is supposed to be even busier. Last week the PT picked up in intensity. This is still a struggle for me but I am getting through it. It actually makes my body feel better, of course not while actually doing the PT but afterwards!

Monday was the Team Development Course. It was both fun and challenging. This course is designed to develop teamwork and leadership skills. Some of the task seem impossible to complete while others we simply ran out of time. The course was mentally and physically tough. We only completed 1 of 6. I am proud to say I was the team leader on the one we fully completed! We had a strong team though. Hooah! We went through the Chaplain Corps museum later that day. It was interesting to see the full history of the Chaplain Corps.








Tuesday we had Tactical Radio Communication class. Most of us had no clue what we were really saying but we sounded professional anyway. The cadre teaching the class had a lot of combat experience as medics. They had a lot of stories to tell and a lot of experience in Medevac situations. It was a good class, very well taught.

Wednesday was the day of days so far for CIMT, NBC training. Not NBC as in T.V. training, but Nuclear, Biological, and Chemical warfare training. GAS, GAS, GAS...we had 9 seconds to remove our mask from the holder, put on the mask, clear the mask, and seal the mask. After classroom training we were taken to the CBRN range. I have never seen so many grown men cry at one time! When the CS gets in your eyes, nose, and throat your body starts immediately trying to flush it out. Tears, mucus, slober, drool, and everything else is dripping from your eyes, nose, and mouth. Good times!

2nd Platoon after the Gas Chamber!

Thursday and Friday was First Aid training. It was good information to learn. Some of it was a little boring because of all the powerpoints but the instructors were really good.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

CH-BOLC CIMT Week 1


Well, I made it through week one of CIMT at CH-BOLC. For those of you preparing to come to Fort Jackson let me tell you, it is hotttttt here!!!! It hasn't been too bad so far. We had a lot of class time this week getting inprocessed. Received a lot of gear (TA 50) this week. Spent some time outside working on drill and ceremony. The asphalt gets really hot about lunch time. I spent my birthday here on Wednesday. A friend I have here that I met during AT with the 81st back in April took me out for my birthday. That was a good time. It is rough being away from Natasha and the boys, especially on my birthday. I am going to miss our churches 45th anniversary this Sunday, Happy Birthday Calvary! I am going to miss Father's Day and the baby dedication ceremony at church. I told Colin since he was the oldest son he would have to stand in there for me. I got him squared away with a new suit, he told me he wanted a bowtie but I didn't want him looking like Ducky on NCIS. I will miss the 4th of July holiday but hopefully Natasha and the boys will get to come down here to visit. I am missing out on a lot but I keep in mind those soldiers who are overseas. They will miss out on at least a year of their families lives. Before you go to sleep tonight ask God to bless those that serve our nation. They sacrifice so much and ask for so little. At least we can pray for them and their families.

Being my birthday week, I received some mail from home. Thank you all for the push ups!!! Just kidding, thank you to all who sent me a card. It was good to get mail from home. Only problem was CH Hart and SFC Rankins makes you drop and do push ups or mountain climbers before giving you your mail. It was worth it though! The class actually gave those of us who celebrated our birthdays this week a card for our birthday. I think it was about 5 of us this past week with birthdays. CH Hart asked me how old I was, I should have told him 4, I had to do 35 push ups in front of the class.

I have met some really good guys here this week. Had some good times and some rough times. I expect things to really pick up next week. We start a more hectic schedule and regular PT sessions. Hopefully it will make the time go by faster being busier. When I get weak and tired I look to God for strength and He is there for me. It won't be easy getting through class but I press forward remembering that all I do is for the glory of God.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

AT Fort Jackson


Made it through AT last week. I met some incredible people during the week. Many Chaplain Candidates came together last week at the 81st RSC for annual training. Sunday morning we had an APFT. Physical fitness has been lacking some in my life! The 2 mile run was rough but God pulled me through it. We had several class to prepare us as Army Chaplains. Suicide prevention was one of the main topics. Although there are more prevention resources than ever, suicides and suicide attempts continue to rise. I pray those considering taking their life will find comfort and strength in the Lord to overcome those feelings.

It was good to be able to go to Fort Jackson prior to CH-BOLC. I have an idea where everything is located now so I won't be so lost when I arrive this summer. Some of the guys have already been through CH-BOLC CIMT and Phase I and were able to offer some advice and guidance on what is to come. We picked their brains all week. CH Winter lead chapel service Sunday morning. It was a blessing to spend time in worship with the soldiers. I am looking forward to moving ahead and gaining more experience. Everyone there was very encouraging.

SRP was probably the worst part of the week. I got stuck by more needles than I can count. Had my blood pressure checked endless times. Had dental x-rays a couple of times. Checked my vision (still can't see that big E without my glasses or contacts)! Had the dentist working my teeth over while they checked my blood pressure (no wonder it was a little high)! By the time we finished at 1300 I was starving. 1LT Guzman took me to the Golden Coral for the buffet after SRP. That was the highlight of the day! Thanks Guzman!



I was glad to get home. I missed Natasha and the boys. It was a good experience and I met a lot of good guys and lady, I didn't forget you King! Although I am proud to be one of the 81st Wildcats I am looking forward to getting assigned to a local unit so I can begin my Army ministry.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Annual Training

I have AT next week at Fort Jackson. It has been interesting trying to get all the paperwork in order. There was a bit of a mishap with my email, I wasn't receiving all the important information regarding AT. My name was spelled wrong on the outgoing emails. Jeffery, should be Jeffrey. Two little letters have wreaked all kinds of havoc! I have been scrambling to get caught up on travel request, hotel arrangements, and tons of other things. God is keeping me on my toes.

It is just a week but I know it will be rough for Natasha. She has to get Colin, Carson, and Carter up each morning to get Colin to school. He is like me in the mornings, a BEAR! Once I get my coffee I am ok, he needs his juice and he is fine.

I am looking forward to meeting many of the Chaplain Candidates I will attend CH-BOLC with this summer at AT next week. I pray God will use each one of us to lift up those who serve our country.

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Gift from Above!

I am a little behind on my post but God gave us another gift on March 12. 7 lbs 12 oz, boy #3, we stuck with the C name and named him Carter. I really won't be able to get their names right now! Colin, Carson, and Carter. Wild, Wilder, and hopefully not Wildest! I love my boys and wouldn't trade them for the world.




I am truly thankful for God's presence in my life. When our second son Carson was born I was only able to hold him for a second and they had to take him off to ICU. His little lungs weren't working quite right and he seemed to struggle for each breath. The first couple of days of his life were difficult. I found myself on my knees in the hospital chapel, praying for God to strengthen his body, strengthen his lungs. God answered my prayers as well as the many others praying for him. "Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your request be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus" Philippians 4:6-7. On April 6 that will have been 4 years ago. Three weeks ago after the birth of our third son Carter, I found myself on my knees again in that same chapel. Only this time I was there to offer praise and thanks to God for the birth of our healthy little boy. "Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you" 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18. Give thanks to God for everything, good and bad. God is in control and God loves His children. Put all your trust in Him and He will give you life, He will give you peace, He will give you love, He will give you comfort, He will give you joy. Thank you Lord for the gifts of life.



Monday, February 22, 2010

Busy, Busy, Busy

I have some busy days ahead. First an upcoming business trip to Chicago. Our baby is due in about four weeks. My classes are nearing the end of the term, research papers will soon be due. I have been ordered to attend SRP at Ft. Jackson, SC sometime during March or the first week in April. I sent my request for April in as soon as possible, I do not want to risk being gone when the baby is born. It is only for three days, but it is about a nine hour drive. Everything seems to be happening at the same time.

It is busy but it is such an exciting time for our family. Natasha, Colin, Carson, and I are so excited about our new arrival Carter. I believe he will put our already lively house into overdrive! I can't wait to meet him. Colin and Carson will be good with him. I can already tell by the way they talk about the baby. They want to teach him everything. God continues to bless our family each day. God is good, all the time!

Monday, February 8, 2010

Juggling Act

I told my wife the other day if my day job doesn't work out I can always join the circus as a juggler. I have become quite the expert at juggling task here lately. To give some of you an idea of what my typical day consist of it goes something like this: Start out getting the kids ready for school and daycare. Rush to get Colin or Carson dropped off at school, Natasha takes one and I take the other. Off to work, if things go well I usually get off around 1800 hrs (6:00). I rush straight to basketball practice most nights. Practice is over by 7:30, we get a bite to eat usually finished by 8:30. I have to run to the store to get milk, bread, and ice-cream sandwiches (Carson "has to have them"). I might make it home in time to help get the boys to bed. By now it is close to 2200 (10:00). I have to work on my class work. Working towards your Master degree doesn't allow much downtime. If I am lucky I can get in bed by midnight, but some nights it is much later. Am I complaining? Not at all, I enjoy every minute of my life. My pursuit is to serve the Lord, if this it what it takes then I am completely happy.

Oh, I have picked up another side activity. I have been writing for the Army Chaplaincy website. If you get a chance check it out, www.armychaplaincy.com. Lots of good information on the site.

I should be getting close to a unit assignment. CH Savage emailed me last week and said I may hear something this week. I am looking forward to it!

Pro Deo Et Patria

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Still Waiting

I am still waiting for assignment to a local unit. Many candidates are in the process of being transferred into the Select Reserve. I finally got my verification letter from Liberty University stating I am enrolled, I was able to send in my RFO (request for orders) for CH-BOLC this summer. I spend a great deal of time completing applications. We recently went to Ft. Campbell so I could get my military id. On the way back home we stopped at the store to pick up some items. The lady at the register thanked me for what I do. I thanked her for her appreciation and we left the store. I told my wife as we walked out all I have done so far for the Army is paper work! It gave us a good laugh. It is good to see people so supportive of our military personnel. I do look forward to serving my country and most importantly serving God.