Today’s #YOUAREGOVX member’s unique service history took him from Coronado beach, to the security contracting world, and finally to chasing down pirates. How did he get the call-sign “Windex?” Funny story about that …
BUD/S, pirate hunting, and a run-in with a glass door.
I joined the US Navy through the delayed entry program when I was a junior in high school. My goal was to become a Navy SEAL. In 1993, I left for basic training and less than a year later I was in Coronado, classed up with BUD/S class #197. A year later, after my leg healed after a break I sustained in training, I graduated with class #200 as a much different person. I checked into my first SEAL team in January 1995, I served in Guam where I worked in the Para-Loft. My final stop in Naval Special Warfare was SEAL Team Five.
At the 10-year mark, I wanted to try something different but I still felt a strong obligation to serve. So after taking six months to adjust to civilian life, I jumped right back into the security contracting world with Blackwater in February of 2004. I spent the next four years doing back-to-back-to-back tours. When the romance in Iraq was over, I did a handful of short-term contracts with both CONUS and OCONUS until settling into maritime security anti-piracy work, where I’ve worked ever since.
I knew from a very young age that I would join the military. I grew up in a household rich with pride in country and patriotism. It could have had something to do with the generation gap, being raised by my grandparents. For whatever the reason, I realized that a life without service was never an option for me. I never felt particularly pressured to join the military, even though both my father served in Vietnam, and his father served in WWII (in the Army, I might add). It just seemed to be my calling.
I got my first call-sign in Northern Iraq when I walked through a huge “not-so-automatic” automatic sliding glass door. Windex was born.
What living person do you most admire?
Words to live by.
I once responded to an ignorant Facebook comment directed at the kind of lifestyle I’ve led with the following:
“We do not ask for your approval, nor will you receive an apology for what we do or who we are. We do not expect to be understood any more than we will try to understand you. We will take your ridicule with the understanding that the reason you have the freedom to pass it upon us is given to you by our hand! And when we are asked why we chose this life, we will tell you, we chose nothing. We were born. This is what we are: Sheepdogs.”