13 December 2009

Words of Wisdom....If you want my advice.....

From the Soldier side:  One of the things NCOs (Non Commissioned Officer- or Sergeants) are supposed to be able to do in the Army is be the mother, father, rabbi, chaplain and problem solver for their people.  I'm sure most NCOs who've been to war know what I'm talking.  When your Soldiers, (Marines, Airmen & Sailors) are deployed the NCO has to not only be a mind reader, but be able to solve problems from thousands of miles away. 
Often the NCO can do very well at solving their troops problems, but so often they can't fix their own...but that's another story for later.  The NCO's duty was to make sure his or her troops could function and do their jobs.  In places like Iraq, this was life or death on convoys, raids and other missions.  If a "Joe" or a "Jane" was totally distracted thinking about problems thousands of miles away, they wouldn't be worth a shit on the gun or behind the wheel of an Up Armored M1114 Humvee. 

I guess word of my "skills" at helping solve soldier's problems spread around our little camp in Baghdad. I would often have soldiers who I barely knew come up and tell me their problems. A few times, I would diplomatically ask if they had talked to the real chaplain we had with us. But they said he was usually useless. I suspect that (at that time) my 20+ years of being a civilian cop gave me good training and experience... maybe more usful than going to some Bible college for several years.                                                   

I guess that’s the reason they would stick guys on my team who had expressed thoughts of suicide and other problems associated with combat stress. I felt if somebody felt like killing themselves, put them on a gun truck as a gunner and let them kill some asshole insurgent. My ideas in this regard often went ignored. Go figure.

This is leading up to my words of wisdom on the matters of the heart. I can help others, but had no idea what to do for myself many times.

To be cont.


Coffeypot said...

That is always the way. You are not alone in this department.

Anonymous said...

1. Admire your AC-130 gunner's dislikes.
2. As an army troop, back in the day, the girls would see our short hair and say, "Eeeww, you're a soldier."
3. There were a few studs around, but most had to settle for gritty stuff -or paying for it.
4. Did have a German girlfriend for awhile -until I p****d her off.
5. On the other side of the coin, watched my troops crash and burn in their relationships with some regularity.
6. My best advice to a 19 year old LCPL considering marriage was: "Don't."
7. Being unmarried myself, had zippy credibility in that counseling area.
8. My troops who married girls from back home generally made out better than the ones who met locals.
9. Can remember working through the AF to get a SSGT home. We were on a contingency and the word came back that his wife had gone back to her original profession. Had been busted for selling drugs while engaging in prostitution and his children were in Child Protective Custody in Orange County, CA.
10. Never talked anybody out of doing anything stupid. My NCO's weren't much better at it.
11. Found that once I was regularly employed, making a decent salary, had to fight women off.
12. Prior to that, was pretty sorry at womanizing.
13. And, yes, fit the stereotypical mold of the fellow who had one use for a woman.
14. Am some "improved" these days, but still manage to irritate my wife and daughter regularly, being such a chauvanist pig.
V/R JWest

CI-Roller Dude said...

Yeah, ask me how to clear a jam on a M249...