I was born in San Antonio, Texas, in 1976, or to be accurate, a few miles outside city limits. My ethnicity ( if that's right way to spell it) is a jumble of nationallities: Irish, Mexican, French-Canadian, Itallian, American-Indian, and if that's not enough, my last name is Germanic.
While growing up in the eighties, I would build model cars while listening to Super Q (anyone from San Antonio remember that old radio station?) I got into older bicycles at a young age, fixing up old Schwinns, Stelbers, JC Higgins, and Murrays. My other hobbies were drawing and writing stories.
A few years after high school, I married a girl I'd met in the 7th grade, (still married,10 years this year!) and started working at a mail center, as a temp. After that, I worked at a plant that build fountain drink machines for fast food restaraunts. Then came the day a U S Army recruiter drove up beside me as I walked home from the bus stop...
... he put his military I.D. card against the passenger door window of his little white car, asking me "Are you hungry? Let's go to Taco Bell, and I can tell you about the Army." ...
...Well, I sure as hell wasn't gonna jump in a car with a total stranger! but I told him if he was the real deal, to show up at this address the next day at 6:00 pm. Well, he came by the next day with all his info. We talked, I liked what I heard, and joined up. I left for Basic Training March 26, 1999. My fist day of Basic was Apr 1st; but those Drill Sergeants weren't fooling!
I was with the 1st Cav, 1-227, working on the Apache Longbow attack helicopter. It was a great unit, very tight-knit. My second unit was 6-6 Cav, which was hand picked with people from other units, even guys just out of A.I.T. . We ended up going to Germany, which is a such a magical place. Every one loved it there, but still don't see how the stores made any money there, since some of them close at about 2:00pm, plus they would close Sundays-Mondays. When we first got there July 17, 2002, the sun would set at about 11:30pm!! we all had wrecked sleep schedules because it would be late at night, yet still bright outside! While in Germany, we got deployed to Kuwait Feb 09, 2003. On March 23rd, the war offically kicked off, and we rolled out.
Some of the highlights of that trip include: Coming upon a fire fight in which our med. Humvee was able to get a soldier to a med. Blackhawk (his left foot was blown off by an enemy grenade.), detouring through a minefield, and of course, CONSTANTLY getting ahead of the guys in the tanks who were supposed to be way out in front of us clearing the way! It was a 100 mile trip that took 4 days. ( We were in Iraq for about a year, till Jan. 09, 2004.)
Then, in Oct., 2003, I said "Hey guys, what's this huge lump doing in my right forearm?" oh, hell...
...Well, out in Balad, all I got was some Motrin (didn't help) from the medics. After we got back to Germany, in Jan, I started seeing the doctors at Wurtzburg (didn't help) and they did an MRI on my arm. The hand surgeon must've lost his confidence, because the next thing I knew, they arranged for me to fly to Walter Reed for a biopsy. But the Dr. out there got deployed last minute, and then I found myself being told about the hotels around Lackland AFB. I said "How about that, there's a Lackland AFB in San Antonio, too." The lady helping me said" Yeah, that's where you're going for your arm. Now, the Hotels are well pric-" " My parents live 10 minutes from there, and my in-laws are 5 minutes away from the base!" I told her.
When I had my biopsy, the results were not good; the Dr. said the lump was maligant ( he wouldn't actually say "cancer") and that treatment was to begin right away. I had a port-a-cath put in my chest for the chemotherepy. That chemo was the worse thing to deal with; it scrambled my taste buds, so certain foods would actually taste stale, or worse, rotten! I usually weigh 134 lbs, (at 5'4") but my lowest point with the chemo I weighed 112 lbs. After the Dr.s removed the lump, which had shrunk due to chemo, I underwent radiation therepy. It's been two years since they removed the lump, and I'm feeling better, tho the surgery left me with limited range of motion in my right hand, as well as permanent numbness in half my hand(thumbside). I still go for scans every 3 months, and (thank God!) still am cancer-free!!
After all that, I was Med. Retired in Apr. of 2006. Living the free life, now, trying to get back on track working with my V.A. Rep. Mr.Ralph Harrison ( now it's Wendy Foster) to go to the VBTC School, which has been alot of fun working with different systems in my PC. My goal in life later is to make serious animated films dealing with future space travel, and the progress of mankind. I'd love to see more American Animated films that could have as deep as stories as live-action films. IT'S TIME TO SHOW PEOPLE ANIMATION IS MORE THAN MERE CARTOONS.