Saturday, February 22, 2014

The Gunny

Here is a deployment story: 

When we went to Saudia during the Gulf War, one of the Sergeants with us was a MSGT that I will call Dawes. Dawes is not his real name, but I don't want you to define the whole guy's life based on this one incident. 

We all called him Gunny "Dawes", cause he was very gung ho like some Marine gunnery Sgt. 

Before he joined our squadron, he was in a special squadron that provided security for the Ground Launch Cruise Missiles GLCM, pronounced like Glick-em). They went out in the weeds and did army stuff all the time, because these were forward deployed nuclear missile launchers, so they were serious about their security. Not that the rest of us were not. We were just a bit more relaxed when we were not on duty*.

In our Gulf War experience, we didn't have an overabundance of combat at our rear-ward base. We had some missiles blow up on base and a few dozen were killed by them, which was stressful, but it was not some sort of hand to hand melee or anything. And we had one overly concerned Sgt. that kept calling out gunshots that only he heard, and that sort of thing, but that is a different story.

Gunny "Dawes" was a bit stressed by being deployed and by the missiles that you could do nothing about (that may or may not have poison gas in them) and by the lack of hand to hand combat(Which I think he was really looking forward to) and from the lack of respect he got from us because we thought he was a funny man(because he really was amusing).

 One day, he got so angry at a couple of guys that he fixed his giant bayonet to the end of his M-16 and was threatening them with it inside of the 18 man tent where we slept. He was yelling and growling and waving that thing around in the small confines of our happy canvas home. He was lucky he didn't get himself shot. So, they shipped him back home.

 Some thought the commander was unfair to him, but it seemed reasonable to me. The man was about to snap, if he hadn't already.

 The moral is, don't be Gunny "Dawes" when things are getting difficult. Especially when you are in a group of people that are already getting bombed. 

 *Lest you think we were completely Air Force relaxed all the time, we did do some gung ho stuff too. 
In our technical School, we trained with the Marines, I did a ground combat course with the Army in Ft. Dix, Machine Gunners School, Combat Rifleman Training and I got an Achievement Medal that, if you read it, makes it sound as if I singlehandedly saved King Abdullah Aziz Air Force Base. I will be sure to share that with you sometime too.

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