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Old October 8th, 2006, 10:32 PM   #1
Barb
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Default Does being in the service change a person?

My brother is in the Marines and went over to Iraq a little over a week ago. I've been reading and watching all I can, and from what I gather, his Battalion has replaced this one. http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20061008/...ng_anniversary now i know the media can change the light on certain situations and nothing is 100% accurate, but having my bro over there is still somewhat scary.

Now, my question... I realize that war can greatly affect a person, but for those who have served or know people that have... what effect does it have on you now? anything? bad or good- just curious to see some replies.
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Old October 8th, 2006, 10:40 PM   #2
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i didnt serve but dad and 4 uncles and both grandpas and many of my cool old dude neighbors served. I gather i makes you more mature, cautious, deliberate, patriotic, patient. Ohh and it makes you tell lots of stories to little kids that complain. Usually start out something like : shut up you dont know what cold is. You dont know what hot is. You ever eat out of a trash can like a little vietnamese orphan ??? Ok then eat your dinner. Makes ya tell LOTS of tough luck stories.
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Old October 9th, 2006, 05:50 AM   #3
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Barb, I've not been in a combat situation though I served for 9 years. I have family members who have been in battle.....some it changed some it didn't....I think it really depends on how they can mentally process the things that they see and have to do.
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Old October 9th, 2006, 06:03 AM   #4
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Calling PP, Calling PP.

I never served but the neighbors boy was in Iraq for the initial invasion.
They had a CNN reporter with them so we got update fairly often.

The only change we saw is he has New brothers that he'll do anything for.
These "Kids" came home and traveled to each others homes for 2-3 months.
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Old October 9th, 2006, 06:37 AM   #5
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I served quite a long time ago, I was in the Navy, when we bombed Kadafi and spent 7 month's in the Persian Gulf. not that I would compare it to hand to hand combat, the service does teach you alot about life. there is a bond created that can be stronger than family.
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Old October 9th, 2006, 08:16 AM   #6
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Big Fodee is in the Marines? Whoa.

Tell Derek I said thanks!!!
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Old October 13th, 2006, 10:57 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul04TJ
Calling PP, Calling PP.
I work with a father of one of the soldiers in that company. He was just at my desk yesterday. You may know him, Paul - he's the Dimensional Engineer for the Jeep/Truck platforms at DCX.

Personal testimony from those that served will be subjective. Hearing from the people that knew the soldiers before and after will provide you with what you are looking for.

The media reports are an incredibly small percentage of what actually happens over there.
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Old October 13th, 2006, 11:05 AM   #8
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It is going ot be so different for so many people. I was in the AF, even if I was in now in Iraq I wouldn't be changed at all, I would never have to pick up a gun. Those that are pulling the trigger are going to be impacted more tically than those that don't. Those that are seeing the wounded soldiers come in and trying to save thier lives will be more impacted than those that don't. You get the idea.
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Old October 13th, 2006, 11:25 AM   #9
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Yes.

For a young person, everything major they do changes them somewhat.

College changes most people.

Marriage (or a serious, committed relationship) changes most people.

A stint in the service (combat or non-combat, active duty or reserve) changes most people.

TIME changes people.

Will your brother be the same when he comes back? Unlikely. Will it be better or worse? Hard to tell, but typically he will be better - although it's most likely they will be some good and bad.

However, you will also be different when he gets out as well, because time, experience, college, etc... will have changed you too.
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Old October 13th, 2006, 12:04 PM   #10
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I dont see a post here that i disagree with at all .

Some other things iv seen from those that were in combat .

My father was an avid hunter . Upon his return from combat he never hunted again . He had no issues with hunting or those that did but he never picked up a gun again .

There will be things he will and wont talk about , its his way of dealing with it .

I was not in the military I was a civlian officer , I my self talk of funny things that happened here and there , the things i dont wish to remember are vivid in my mind but i dont tell stories of those things . My father was the same way about WWII stories .

I have known one Nam vet that was the opposite , he spoke mostly of the worst shit he seen - done .

as well stated in this post its different for every one .
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Old October 13th, 2006, 01:18 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Grandman

I was not in the military I was a civlian officer ,
????? were you a merchant marine?
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Old October 13th, 2006, 01:25 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Grandman
I dont see a post here that i disagree with at all .

Some other things iv seen from those that were in combat .

My father was an avid hunter . Upon his return from combat he never hunted again . He had no issues with hunting or those that did but he never picked up a gun again .

There will be things he will and wont talk about , its his way of dealing with it .

I was not in the military I was a civlian officer , I my self talk of funny things that happened here and there , the things i dont wish to remember are vivid in my mind but i dont tell stories of those things . My father was the same way about WWII stories .

I have known one Nam vet that was the opposite , he spoke mostly of the worst shit he seen - done .

as well stated in this post its different for every one .
I had a similar situation with my Brother-in-law Grandman. He really didn't want to talk about it, and wouldn't pick up a gun again either.
(He use to run the dozer that would do Mine cleanup, during Nam)
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Old October 13th, 2006, 01:28 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gotsand?
????? were you a merchant marine?

http://www.progressiveboink.com/b/images/100film/69.jpg

Last edited by PävementPounder; October 13th, 2006 at 09:52 PM.
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Old October 13th, 2006, 03:32 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gotsand?
????? were you a merchant marine?

I think he actually served with Caesar.


Hope all goes well for your brother Barb.
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Old October 13th, 2006, 05:12 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gotsand?
????? were you a merchant marine?
He was a cop.

I, however, was a USCGR officer in a Port Security unit - yes, one of the fabled "Coast Guard SEALS"... :tonka:
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Old October 17th, 2006, 05:37 AM   #16
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It's a well known fact that about 10% of those in the military actually experience combat. To me, combat experience means you frequently directly fired a weapon at the enemy and received enemy fire in a close personal situation. Witnessing the absolute destruction of the bodies of friends and enemy does cause change in one's perspective of simple life and death to a degree very few civilians will understand.
The value of life becomes problematic, taking human life becomes an instinct.
To simulate your own response, disconnect any source of communication with friends and family for at least 24 hours. Drag some road kill home and keep it in the same room as you stay awake for all those 24 hours sober and without food or drink watching
the first 20 minutes of "Saving Private Ryan", the final 45 minutes of "We were soldiers", and "Hamburger Hill" back to back for the entire 24 hours.
Get back to me on how you feel.

Last edited by RICK; October 17th, 2006 at 07:47 AM.
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Old October 17th, 2006, 04:46 PM   #17
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Barb, tell your brother we wish him luck and look forward to his return.

As far as combat changing people, don't forget the civilians caught in the crossfire. My parents were teenagers in the Netherlands during WWII. You can see it in thier eyes and hear it in thier voices how the events of that war affected them. Death, Destruction, Despair, Liberation, Hope. My Mother readily talks about her experiences in Rotterdam, while my Father does not say much about his experiences in a small town on the Dutch/German border. They both saw different things and were both affected in different ways.

My younger brother served in the U.S Navy in the 80's. During the Qadafi threat. His battle group sailed towards Libya at one point. He came back different. Heck, basic chaged him. I think they put him on the rack and made him taller.

So yes, from someone who has only seen the results from afar, combat and/or service will change a person on one level or another. It is inevitable.

Last edited by PeteC; October 17th, 2006 at 04:48 PM.
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Old October 19th, 2006, 03:35 PM   #18
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Thank you for all your responses :)
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