Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Our Newest Ranger


When my daughter was dating, I did my best to not get involved. It drove Mrs. T nuts. "Why don't you get to know that lad", she'd ask. "Someday I'll be told to know this one, until then my mind is an empty vessel" and so it was.

Same thing with my bonus daughter. She's show up with one pimply faced, beer stealing dweeb after another, and I'd wonder to myself, as only a bonus dad can or should do.

But one was different. You could see it in his eyes. Barely old enough to drive, the kid had fire. He was going places, he knew it, and made certain all around him knew it to.

High school over, they drifted apart and went their separate ways for college, she to Boston, he took an Army scholarship to the Virginia Military Institute. Last May, he graduated near the top of his class and was commissioned an Army second lieutenant.

He never lost that look.

For the past 2+ months he has been in an intense training course. Friday he will be certified by the Army as Ranger Ready and will have earned the tan beret of an Army Ranger, a member of a very elite military organization.

I always liked that boy. I'm proud of him, and proud to know him. His troops are in good hands.

Toad

10 comments:

Gail, in northern California said...

Why does this make me sad?

skorpeo said...

aside from what one's views are on the military (i, for the record, am a strong supporter...and a member!), you have to applaud the determination it took to get through the ranger course. that kind of determination is sorely lacking in much of today's youth. congrats to him!!

Toad said...

The are very few areas in our society, save perhaps sports, in which a 22-23 yo can visibly excel in their chosen field, earn and deserve the respect of those much older wearing the same work clothes, and for all to know they can be counted on rain or shine to do their jobs expertly without grumbling.

Its hard at 50.

That we send these fine men to hell is the sad part.

Divine Theatre said...

Toad, I agree. Affirmative Action has destroyed any semblence of achievement in our society. It is amazing and inspirational to see an individual actually EARN his way.
I will say no more.

Barbara said...

Wonder if he knew what he wanted to accomplish back when you first met him?
I don't even know this young man and I am impressed.

Toad said...

Barbara, he knew he wanted to go to one of the military academies, but missed out on a final medical exam. Which academy, which field, I don't believe he knew.

Genuine Lustre said...

As the mother of a Batallion Ranger, congrats!! I'm sure he will be useful fellow to have around. RLTW!

Flo said...

"Toad, I agree. Affirmative Action has destroyed any semblence of achievement in our society."

Oh? I keep looking but I can't find where Toad came out against affirmative action. I'll keep looking but FWIW I'm a believer.

"he took an Army scholarship to the Virginia Military Institute. Last May, he graduated near the top of his class"

Wow.

I have nothing but the best memories imagineable of VMI cadets from my college years in Virginia, and the decades thereafter. VMI cadets and grads are THE BEST. Honorable, dedicated, strong character, with a FIRM line of dileneation between play and work. You say he "wanted to go to one of the military academies, but missed out" and I'll just add that from my experience on that campus and off, your young man was twice-blessed to have "missed out" and gone on to VMI which is certainly a military academy of the highest order.

Great post, thanks so much.

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