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Walking home late — 13 Comments

  1. There is also a ‘life lesson’ for all of us in this story. Sometimes out of the ordinary comes the extraordinary.

  2. What a story–I think this is happening more than we think these days.
    I’ve had a real spate of people out-processing who are ETSing–they’ve
    just had it, many of the reasons being several of those described during
    your walk.

  3. You helped that soldier more than you can imagine on your way home in the dark. I am sure he returned to his hut in brighter spirits and with more hope. It must be awful to be stuck like that and at a point where it really would be absurd to retire….so close to a pension and yet so far when one considers continuing in a job one abhors.

  4. Two credits short of an AA??? Or two courses short of an AA?? In either case there should be some opportunities for on-line instruction that could transfer into and complete the AA at the “home” institution. I worked enough with vets and members of the sevice returning from active duty to know that many if not most colleges and universities would be eager and flexible in arranging for degree completion.

  5. If you see him again, please tell him I said thank you for serving. And
    ask him to thank you for me for serving, too.

  6. Nope, never in a million years. I have no interest in uniform standards, and the amount of bs that soldiers NCOs and Chief put up with is beyond any form of rationality IMHO.

  7. I hope your young stranger in the night will have a better day tomorrow, maybe see some reason for optimism. There’s a ton of tension and anxiety out here in civilianland, too, along with disappointment and loss. Kids coming out of college when there are no jobs, older unemployed wondering what’s going to become of them. People staying in jobs they hate or where they are being taken advantage of because they are afraid there’s nowhere else to go.

  8. You make me want to help. Oh, hell, I want to help anyway, and I spend so much of my time doing just what you did – listening and letting people let some of their inner turmoil out to a listening ear and a caring heart.

    I ask myself, is there not a career counselor to whom he could go with his concerns who might be able to find him a new path that might allow his family to go with, and that would allow him to have a fresh outlook on those eight more years? Is there not a program that would allow him to attend the balance of college to complete a degree on Uncle in exchange for a few more years of service, ideally in a field aligned with a college major he cares about?

  9. We have no real insite into the lives of people and service men and women who are ‘living’ and working in this harsh but beautiful land.
    You words are encouraging – you care. I hope that you are permitted to write a full diary for the world to read so that we can support these men & women when they come home. We don’t need another reaction like that of Vietnam.

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