Branch of Service: U.S. Army

Hometown: Chillicothe, IL

Current Residence: Broken Arrow, OK

James sits in full camouflage looking down to the groundJames was in his freshman year in high school when he first enlisted in the Army reserves. His desire to serve his nation started at a young age when he witnessed a military funeral and was moved to tears. He later found out that every generation before him had served in the military which further set his resolve to enlist. James’ father convinced him to get a MOS that he could use when he got out of the Army. His first MOS was 31V Unit Level Communications Maintainer. When he returned from basic and AIT, he learned that the reserve was not for him and he decided to enlist in active duty. He received his orders to report to FT. Dix NJ transition to wait for his flight to Germany. When he finally received his orders to fly out to Germany, he reported to HHC 501st Military Intelligence Battalion on Katterbauch Kaserne. He was then deployed to the Gulf region for Desert Shield and Desert Storm. James spent almost ten months in the Gulf before he returned to Germany. Then the day that he feared would happen happened – he was ordered to report to FT Campbell KY and was assigned to the 20th Engineer Battalion. James separated from the Army when the 20th Engineers were moved to FT Hood TX.

James then moved to California and spent a few years working on the ocean fishing. He then finally moved back home to Chillicothe IL. where he met and married his wife, Ronda. After getting married, the two moved to Tulsa Oklahoma so James could attend Spartan School of Aeronautics. He also decided to enlist in the Oklahoma National Guard and was assigned to A CO 1/279 infantry. He reclassified to become an infantryman and was deployed to Bosnia for a peacekeeping mission. He then volunteered to go to Iraq with the 245 engineers and also volunteered to go back to Iraq with his unit. Finally, James was medically discharged from the Army in 2010 and was awarded 100% disability in April 2015.

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