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“Victory Starts Here”

Published in the interest of the 108th Training Command • Vol 37.3 Fall 2013


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THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013 • 3

From the Commanding General...

By Maj. Gen. Leslie Purser Commanding General 108th Training Command (IET)

Thank you all for the warm welcome into the 108th. It’s truly my honor and privilege to be a part of this great unit. I have to tell you that after I got the call verifying my assignment, being a good intel weenie I started collecting information on the 108th. What I found was this unit has an absolutely stellar reputation. It consists of very talented and dedicated individuals who are providing significant and meaningful contributions to the missions of the command, USARC, TRADOC and the greater Army. I consider this to be a reflection of your skills, knowledge and expertise and the outstanding leadership of my predecessor. Maj. Gen. Stall shaped the destiny of this unit and set the standard, leading it to be one of the premier training units within the Army. I think Command Sgt. Maj. Derezza said it best in his article in the last GRIFFON when he said,“this is a man that is truly dedicated to the Soldiers under his command…he was devoted to the Soldiers in the 108th.” So he leaves big shoes to fill and I pledge to do

my best to carry on his great leadership. Getting back to the intel part….. as part of my collection activities, I talked to leaders such as Gen. Cone, Maj. Gen. May, Maj. Gen. Smith and the Sergeant Major of the Army (SMA). All sang your praises. Cone said,“TRADOC could not do this without the 108th. You’ve saved our butts many times.” The SMA said,“The 108th has bent over backwards and the increase in female drill sergeants was hugely beneficial.” So, great comments all around, but then, I already knew all that. When James Mallory commanded this unit I was commanding the Military Intelligence Readiness Command. James and I used to regularly compare notes about our challenges and opportunities. When I was being considered for this position I eagerly pursued it with the CAR, and called James for guidance. A little bit about me. My training background was forged in my first two assignments on active duty between 1980-83. Later as a Reserve Soldier I commanded an OC/T battalion, training and evaluating Soldiers throughout Virginia and North Carolina. My civilian job was with Joint Forces Command, in the Training Directorate, and is now in the Joint Staff J7, again, the Training Directorate. Although intelligence by trade, my first love is training Soldiers and I feel so fortunate to have this opportunity back in the USAR -and out of the Pentagon! This is my sixth command, and I also served as Lt. Gen. Stultz’ Deputy, establishing the USAR Human Capital Core Enterprise, so I worked closely with Recruiting and Cadet Commands among others. My family is a totally Army family. My husband is a retired Cavalry Officer who works at Army Cyber Command, and both my kids are

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serving on active duty, products of ROTC. My son is a Blackhawk pilot at Fort Campbell, Ky., and my daughter is preparing to take command of an intelligence company in the DC area. My son went thru basic as an SMP cadet at Fort Benning, Ga., as part of the 329th out of Indianapolis, and has many many suggestions for me now! I established a command philosophy that you may have already seen, so I’ll simply summarize it here. I’m a Colin Powell fan, and use many of his leadership principles and concepts, in fact one is, I’m a Soldier who happens to be female, not a female Soldier. The word “Soldier” comes first and my gender does not define me, nor does my rank. I happen to be the commander of this unit and therefore responsible for its failures. All credit for success goes to you. I work for you, we’re a team and my staff exists to support you. My most important role is to ensure you have the tools you need to do your job. With that, I expect you to take care of your subordinates and their families, and always demonstrate professionalism. Hold your subordinates accountable for their actions. I’m a big believer of the Army values, on and off duty. Derezza and I will visit you unannounced from time to time, more than likely to take a PT test with you, because I love PT! I dare you to beat my score. I ask you to continue to focus on communication up and down the chain of command; comms for Reserve units is vital to our success. I seek creative interchange of ideas, and not yesmen. Please do not be afraid to talk to me when I’m visiting your unit. WOMAN OWNED

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Always ask questions and let me know your concerns. Keep a positive attitude; optimism is a force multiplier (another Colin Powell principle). And lastly, prepare for the fiscal constraints we will experience and foster a culture of cost management in anticipation. Finally a few words on our business in the 108th. There are a few areas that I have discovered through my visits with the 104th and 95th (98th you’re next), that I would like to ask you to focus on. First, drill sergeant recruiting. We exist for our drill sergeant capability and our ability to train cadets, but our DS numbers are not where they need to be. I ask for your assistance here. We also need to ensure our drill sergeant candidates are ready for school. We have some issues with PT form, primarily in the push-ups, so you’ll see a renewed focus on that. Second, Professional Military Education (PME). I want everyone to seek the next PME course appropriate to their grade, and have an opportunity to attend. Without the required PME, careers stop short. Take the time to do the courses. And third, sponsorship programs. Many of the resiliency challenges we have in the Army, such as SHARP and suicides, occur during periods of transition. I need your help to enhance your sponsorship program and share best practices with other units so we can do a better job supporting and mentoring new Soldiers in the 108th. Again, it’s a distinct honor to be part of the Griffons and I look forward to serving with you for the next few years.

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Fall 2013

Contents From the Commanding General . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3 From the Command Sergeant Major . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5 108th Training Command (IET) Changes Command . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6 Reserve Drill Sergeant of the Year . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8 Army Reserve Hopes to Recruit More Drill Sergeants . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10 Breaking Down Barriers  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12 Inventing a Family Tradition . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13 Task Force Cobra  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14 Leader’s Training Course . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16 Drill Sergeants Set the Tone at Course’s Start . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 18 Warrior Forge: Leadership Development Assessment Course . . . . . . . . . . . 20 Career Day . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 20 mtvUROTC Challenge . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22 Helping Shape Boys Into Men . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23 Battalion Training Exercise . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23 Cutting Edge Technology . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  24 Drill Sergeants Prepare for the Summer Surge  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  26 Best Warrior Competition Train-Up . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  27 2013 Army Reserve Best Warrior  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  29 Army Reserve Best Warrior Competition Supported by the Total Force . . 30 Army Reserve Warrior Stays Physically, Mentally Strong . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 32 Third Brigade, 98th Changes Command . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  33 From the 95th Division Commander . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  34 From the Command Chief Warrant Officer . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 35 Army Reserve Presents ACOE Awards . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  36 Tornado Destroys Soldier’s Home . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  38 Warrant Officer Spotlight . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 40 Vehicle Safety . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 41 Chaplains Corner . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 41 Do You Want To Be a Unit Public Affairs Representative? . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 42 Army Suicide Prevention Month . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 42 Soldier’s Gold Mine — Nuggets to Keep You Informed. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 43

108th Training Command (IET) • Charlotte, NC • Vol. 37, No. 3 Fall 2013 108th Training Command (IET) Commanding General.......................................................................................... Maj. Gen. Leslie A. Purser Command Sgt. Maj. ....................................................................... Command Sgt. Maj. Rocci R. Derezza Deputy Commanding General.................................................................................. Brig. Gen. Allan Elliot Chief of Staff..................................................................................................................... Col. Daniel Christian Chief Executive Officer............................................................................................................... Mr. Larry Cruz 108th Training Command Public Affairs (IET) Public Affairs Officer........................................................................................................... Lt. Col. Chris Black Email: christopher.black2@usar.army.mil Public Affairs Specialist and Editor......................................................................... Ms. Deborah Williams Email: deborah.propst.williams@us.army.mil Deputy Public Affairs Officer............................................................................................ Capt. Tracey Frink Email: tracey.l.frink.mil@mail.mil Public Affairs NCO.................................................................................................. Staff Sgt. Deidra Jackson Email: deidra.l.jackson.mil@mail.mil Public Affairs NCO.............................................................................................................. Sgt. David McLean Email: david.w.mclean1.mil@mail.mil 95th Training Division (IET) Commander.............................................................................................................. Brig. Gen. A. Ray Royalty Command Sgt. Maj. ....................................................................................... Command Sgt. Maj. Paul Hill Public Affairs Officer.......................................................................................................... Maj. Jennifer Mack Email: jennifer.k.mack3mil@mail.mil Public Affairs NCOIC ..................................................................................................................................Vacant 98th Training Division (IET) Commanding General................................................................................ Brig. Gen. Michaelene Kloster Command Sgt. Maj. ............................................................................ Command Sgt. Maj. Grady Blue Jr. Public Affairs Officer................................................................................................................................. Vacant Public Affairs NCOIC................................................................................................................................. Vacant

Pictured Above: Along with leadership skills, cadets learn teamwork in the team building exercises such as the stream crossing training. While in the water, cadets flip the raft over and back, and paddle safely back to shore. Photo by Master Sgt. Deborah P. Williams, 108th Training Command (IET) Public Affairs. Front Cover: Sgt. 1st Class Ryan McCaffrey instructs Soldiers on entering and clearing a room during a round robin phase of testing during the 2013 Drill Sergeant of the Year selection process, July 15-17 at Fort Jackson, S.C. McCaffrey took top honors as the Reserve Drill Sergeant of the Year. Photo by Staff Sgt. Andrea Smith, 108th Training Command (IET) Public Affairs

104th Training Division (LT) Commanding General............................................................................................... Brig. Gen. Kurt Hardin Command Sgt. Maj. ...................................................................... Command Sgt. Maj. Juan M. Loera Jr. Public Affairs Officer........................................................................................................... Maj. Alex Johnson Email: alex.l.johnson.mil@mail.mil Public Affairs NCOIC..................................................................................................................................Vacant The Griffon is published four times a year and is an authorized publication for members of the Army. Contents of The Griffon are not necessarily the official views of, or endorsed by, the U.S. Government, Department of Defense, Department of the Army, or the 108th Training Command (IET). The appearance of advertising in this publication, including supplements and inserts, does not in any way constitute an endorsement by the Department of the Army or Knight Communications, Inc. of the products or services advertised. Everything advertised in this publication must be made available for purchase, use or patronage without regard to the race, color, religion, national origin, age, marital status, physical handicap, political affiliation, or any other non-merit factor of the purchaser, use or patron. If a violation or rejection of this equal opportunity policy by an advertiser is confirmed, the publisher shall refuse to print advertising from that source until the violation is corrected. The Griffon is an unofficial publication authorized by AR360-1. Editorial content is prepared, edited, and provided by the Public Affairs Office of the 108th Training Command (IET). The Griffon is published by Knight Communications, Inc., 10150 Mallard Creek Road, Suite 201, Charlotte, NC, 28262 — a private firm in no way connected with the Department of the Army, under exclusive written contract with the 108th Training Command (IET). Material for publication may be submitted to: PAO, 1330 Westover Street, Charlotte, NC 28205-5124.

To coordinate news coverage, contact the 108th Training Command Public Affairs Office - 704-227-2820 ext. 4087 Deadlines: Winter 2013 October 18 • Spring 2014 January 3


THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013 • 5

From the Command Sergeant Major...

By Command Sgt. Maj. Rocci R. DeRezza 108th Training Command (IET)

Recently I participated in a conference call with the Sergeant Major of the Army, Raymond F. Chandler III, where the major topic of discussion was the Army Physical Fitness Test (APFT). I know I’ve discussed this topic in previous articles but evidently it’s time to revisit it. There seems to be an Army wide problem with Soldiers not being held to the APFT standards as outlined in TC 3-22.20, Appendix A. Soldiers are arriving at schools for training and when the APFT is

administered using Army standards, many are failing. Many of these Soldiers pass the APFT at their home unit, but when they get to the school they fail. This leads us to believe that Soldiers are not being held to the Army Physical Fitness Test standards at their home unit. We all know that the Army Physical Fitness Test consists of three events: 2 minutes of push-ups, 2 minutes of sit-ups and a 2-mile run. Appendix A of the Army Training Circular 3-22.20 explains each of these test in detail and how each should be performed along with the responsibilities of the personnel administering the test. These standards are crucial to the role of a drill sergeant. As a drill sergeant you are the mentor and instructor for a new recruit in the Army and should be able to administer the APFT using the proper standards that the Army requires of its Soldiers. A Soldier’s performance on the APFT is linked to his or her fitness level and their ability to do fitness related tasks. If the APFT is not administered correctly then the Soldier is not receiving the total benefit of reaching the maximum fitness level that he or she can meet. As a U.S. Army Reserve Soldier

you are still expected to meet the same APFT standards as a U.S. Army Soldier on active duty. You aren’t required to perform physical training everyday like an active duty Soldier is but rather you are expected to take on this task on your own time. The more we do something the better we be-

come at that task. Take time to look at the APFT standards again and make sure you are performing each test properly and if not, then take the initiative to practice the proper procedures. The Army holds all of us to the same APFT standards and it’s time we get back to following these rules.

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6 • THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013

108th Training Command (IET) Changes Command By Master Sgt. Deborah P. Williams 108th Training Command (IET) Public Affairs

FORT JACKSON, S.C. — The time honored tradition of passing the Colors from the outgoing commander to the incoming commander was instrumental in a Change of Command Ceremony held on Victory Field here. Presiding over the ceremony was Maj. Gen. Glenn Lesniak, deputy commanding general, U. S. Army Reserve Command. During the opening ceremony, parade cannons sounded off and the outgoing commander, Maj. Gen. Robert P. Stall, 108th Training Command (IET), was presented an honorary shell casing to mark the occasion.The Commander of Troops, Col. Andrew Bassford, began the ceremony by forming the command. In keeping with military tradition, Stall passed the Colors relinquishing command to the incoming commander, Maj. Gen. Leslie Purser. The ceremony emphasizes the continuity of leadership and unit identity, and symbolizes the transfer of command responsibility from the departing commander to the arriving commander. The Colors represent not only the heritage and history of the unit, but also the unity and loyalty of its Soldiers.The Colors are the commander’s symbol of authority, representing his/her responsibilities to the organization. Wherever the commander is, there also are the Colors. “Thank you very much for being here this morning to recognize the accomplishments of a tremendous Soldier and leader and welcome aboard a very talented and experienced new commander for the 108th Training Command,” said Lesniak. The Army Reserve’s primary mission is to provide trained and ready Soldiers and units to support our six combatant commands across the world. We provide a versatile mix of enabling capability, the total and joint force. Our Soldiers also provide skills by virtue of their civilian work experience. Our ARFORGEN progressive readiness model produces 28,000 Soldiers a year that are available to deploy into theatre. I am proud that we do this very efficiently, said Lesniak. To maintain that force, the Army Reserve brings in over 20,000 new Soldiers a year.The 108th Training Command plays a key role enabling USARC to sustain that production especially during the summer surge and for the past 12 years in support of the commitments in theatre. “During his past three years of command, Maj. Gen. Rob Stall has masterfully guided this command along the path, of what I would call, sustained excellence. He has put together a solid management system that provides excellent man-

Maj. Gen. Leslie Purser, incoming commanding general, 108th Training Command (IET) receives the Colors symbolizing the transfer of command responsibility from the departing commander to the arriving commander. Photo by Master Sgt. Deborah P. Williams, 108th Training Command (IET) Public Affairs

agement control but also provides clear commanders’ intent and guidance in a manner that supports the current Army focus on mission command,” continued Lesniak. The 108th provides over 1,000 drill sergeants every year in support of Initial Entry Training, reception center and training committee operations, the chaplain school, conducting drill sergeant sustainment training, and directly supports the Drill Sergeant School. “Rob, thank you for all you have done for this command, for all you have done for the Army and throughout your command tenure, it has been great working with you,” Lesniak said.

“I am also very happy to welcome Maj. Gen. Leslie Purser as the new commanding general of the 108th Training Command. She brings an entire military family to

sion to want to continue to serve and command at the two-star level in the Army Reserve is intense and she is going to bring that with all her vigor in this command.” Lesniak commended the Soldiers standing in formation representing not only the 108th Training Command but all the Soldiers serving in the Army today; a true team of professionals that do great things for our Army every day. Thank you for all of you being here today. May God continue to bless the 108th Training Command, its leadership and our Great Nation. When Stall took command of the 108th Training Command (IET) in 2010, it would be his prelude to retirement from the Army Reserve. “Three years ago I became your

“I am very honored and pleased to be here assigned to a unit that has such a stellar reputation.” – Maj. Gen. Leslie Purser. this command,” continued Lesniak.“I know that Maj. Gen. Purser is committed to this assignment. It brings to mind the scene out of ‘Patton’, three weeks after ‘D’ Day when Patton said he would crawl on his belly to get a command, but Maj. Gen. Purser did not have to do that, but let me assure you her pas-


THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013 • 7 commander knowing at that time it would probably be my final three years in the Army Reserve and it has been a magnificent journey for me. We have accomplished so much over the last three years, overcoming many obstacles that challenged us to produce our main pacing items, our drill sergeants, said Stall. “All have sung your praises. Continue to strive to be the best you can be. Support the new commander, the way you have supported me,” said Stall.“Being the commander of the 108th Training Command has been the greatest honor and privilege of my career, my life. Nancy and I wish you only the best in the years ahead and we will miss you. Victory Starts Here! Thank you,” concluded Stall. Purser was commissioned as a second lieutenant in the U.S. Army on May 25, 1980. She held command and staff positions at every level to include, but not limited to, Liaison Officer, Netherland Logistics Element, 310th Theatre Army Area Command, Brunnsum, Netherlands; Deputy Joint Training Exercise Coordinator, Joint Warfighting Center/ J7, Atlantic Command, Suffolk, Va.; commander 1st Battalion, 311th Regiment, 78th Division, Richmond, Va.; 3431st MI Group Commander, NGIC, Charlottesville, Va.; commander, Military Intelligence Readiness Command, Fort Belvoir, Va.; Chief, Defense Intelligence Support Office-Iraq, Multi-National ForcesIraq, Baghdad, Iraq; Deputy Chief, Army Reserve for Human Capital and currently as Assistant Deputy Chief of Staff, G-2, HQDA. She is a graduate of the Military Intelligence Officer Basic and Advanced Courses, United States Army Command and General Staff School, and the United States Army War College.As a distinguished military graduate of Indiana University of Pennsylvania, she received her BA Degree in Graphic Art, and a MSS Degree in Strategic Studies at the United States Army War College. Her awards include the Legion of Merit (3 OLCs), Bronze Star Medal, Joint Meritorious Service Medal, Meritorious Service Medal (3 OLCs), Iraqi Campaign Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, and the Military Intelligence Corps Knowlton Award. Coming to this command was an assignment Purser eagerly pursued. She thanked her family for their support, special thanks to Soldiers standing on the field and those that traveled long distances. “Welcome and thank you for attending and being a part of the ceremony today and a special thanks to the 380th band all the way from Richmond, you sound great. I am very honored and pleased to be here assigned to a unit that has such a stellar reputation,” said Purser. “In the past month, as the incoming commander, I have had an opportunity to observe some of you in action. I observed a group of very talented and dedicated individuals providing significant and meaning-

Maj. Gen. Robert P. Stall, outgoing commanding general, 108th Training Command (IET) with his wife Nancy, received numerous awards from Maj. Gen. Glenn Lesniak, deputy commanding general, U. S. Army Reserve Command. Photo by Master Sgt. Deborah P. Williams, 108th Training Command (IET) Public Affairs

ful contributions to the missions of the command, the support of USARC,TRADOC, and greater Army missions. I consider this to be a reflection of your skills, knowledge, expertise and outstanding leadership and direction of my predecessor; you certainly leave big shoes to fill,” said Purser.“Victory Starts Here!” After the ceremony, a Dining Out in honor of Stall’s retirement was held to recognize and thank him for all his years of dedicated service. He will retire after serving his coun-

try for 36 years, with his final three years in the Army Reserve as commander of the 108th Training Command (IET). Activated as the 108th Airborne Division after World War II (1946), the “Golden Griffons” were originally headquartered in Atlanta, Ga.The division was called the Golden Griffons because of its initial air-ground mission. In October 2008, the 108th Division (IT) became the 108th Training Command (IET).Today, being one of the largest training commands

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in the U.S. Army Reserve with three divisions spread from Puerto Rico to Hawaii, it is known as a premiere U.S. Army Reserve Command focused on training citizens into warriors nationwide. The three divisions, 95th, 98th, and 104th, conduct Basic Combat Training (BCT), one Station Unit Training (OSUT), and Leader Training (LT) at six Army Training Centers.The mission is critical to providing new Soldiers and officers to support the future needs of the Army and Army Reserve.


8 • THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013

Reserve Drill Sergeant of the Year By Staff Sgt. Andrea Smith 108th Training Command (IET) Public Affairs

Sgt. 1st Class Ryan McCaffrey navigates through the Fit-to-Win course during the 2013 Drill Sergeant of the Year selection process, July 1517 at Fort Jackson, S.C. McCaffrey took top honors as the Reserve Drill Sergeant of the Year. Photo by Staff Sgt. Andrea Smith, 108th Training Command (IET), Public Affairs

FORT JACKSON, S.C. — Command officials describe drill sergeants as “top-quality, professional noncommissioned officers (NCOs) from virtually all branches of the Army”.Their role is to turn citizens into Soldiers. Approximately 2,000 drill sergeants train 160,000 new Soldiers each year. What makes these individuals vital to the Army is their passion for the profession and the composite mastery of transitioning civilians to Soldiers. Six of the Army’s top drill sergeants spent the past week enduring a mentally and physically grueling competition to win top honors as the 2013 Drill Sergeant of the Year (DSOY).The days were long and exhausting and the drill sergeants were required to perform the same tasks as the trainees they lead, evaluating their endurance, stamina, and character. Sgt. 1st Class David E. Stover, representing the Army Training Center, Fort Jackson, S.C., was named the 2013 active duty U.S.Army Drill Sergeant of the Year; and Sgt. 1st Class Ryan J. McCaffrey, representing the 98th Training Division (IET), was named the 2013 Army Reserve Drill Sergeant of the Year. Sgt. Maj. Blaine Huston, the deputy commandant of U.S.Army Drill Ser-

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THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013 • 9 geant School at Fort Jackson, S.C. and a former DSOY competitor, referred to the selection process as the “Drill Sergeant Super Bowl.” “Drill sergeants from across the county and from both components go head-to-head to determine who are the most talented and subject matter expert drill sergeants in the nation,” said Huston.“The competition serves to evaluate their professionalism and expertise and the organizations they hail from.” McCaffrey, who is a native of Honolulu, Hawaii, currently serves as a drill sergeant with C Company, 1st Battalion, 321st Infantry Regiment, at Fort Jackson, S.C. “I became a drill sergeant because I wanted the ability to train and leave a good impression on Soldiers before they arrive at their first duty station.” McCaffrey explained that during every recruit’s initial entry training period, drill sergeants work to set the tone for their entire military career. “We are the first impression of the Army that new recruits coming though Initial Entry Training get so it’s important for us to be able to set the best example.” During the selection process, the

competitors were evaluated during several round robin sessions on a variety of Army challenges to include: the Army Physical Fitness Test, weapons qualification, night land navigation, Warrior Tasks and Battle Drills, a foot march, written exams and essays, and a sergeants major board appearance. For McCaffrey, every aspect of the competition was challenging and the selection process served to test his abilities with his peers, both active and reserve component. “I learned a lot of the areas I need to improve on as a drill sergeant,” said McCaffrey.“I learned a lot from all my fellow competitors.We’re learning from each other at all times, everyone was there to help you get better and succeed.” “Training Soldiers drives my passion for being a drill sergeant,” McCaffrey added. He continued on to express that Initial Entry Training becomes more than just the tradition of learning for many recruits. Friends become family, drill sergeants and cadre turn into mentors and the tradition itself becomes a haven of memories. McCaffrey who is an officer trainer at a correctional academy also credits the Army for his success in

Sgt. 1st Class Ryan McCaffrey demonstrates enter and clear a room tactics to Initial Entry recruits during the 2013 Drill Sergeant of the Year selection process, July 15-17 at Fort Jackson, S.C. Photo by Staff Sgt. Andrea Smith, 108th Training Command (IET), Public Affairs

his civilian career. “As far as being a role model in my civilian job, I carry the same values and discipline there as I hold in the Army. Many of my civilian peers appreciate the discipline I bring because it is important for the correctional environment that we work in.

Winning this competition gives me an example of how hard work and diligence pays off.” McCaffrey was presented the Meritorious Service Medal and will be presented the Ralph Haines Jr. Award at a later date in a ceremony in Washington.

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Drill Sergeant of the Year competitor Sgt. 1st Class Ryan McCaffrey completes the push-up event of the Army Physical Fitness test of the competition held July 15-17 at Fort Jackson, S.C. McCaffrey took top honors as the Reserve Drill Sergeant of the Year. Photo by Staff Sgt. Andrea Smith, 108th Training Command (IET), Public Affairs

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Army Reserve hopes to recruit more drill sergeants By Aniesa Holmes FORT BENNING, Ga., (July 10, 2013) — With a continuous need for leadership, U.S. Army Reserve drill sergeant recruiters are seeking men and women with a strong desire to guide and mentor future Soldiers. Recruiters from the 98th Training Division at Fort Benning said finding those drill sergeants requires a weekly effort. Part of their efforts include visiting the Army Career and Alumni Program to speak with Soldiers about the option of transitioning to Reserve status in the Army, which could lead to future drill sergeant positions. “Our strength is a little over 1,300 … we’re constantly recruiting because some drill sergeants get promoted and they leave drill sergeant duties and go to other units,” said Sgt. 1st Class Richard Accardi, a Reserve recruiter with the 98th Training Division.“Promotion is the biggest reason … they want to get promoted to senior rank and often have to take a position with another unit that may not be a drill sergeant unit. “Drill sergeants are the top 10 percent of the Army and the (Army Regulation) 614-200 guideline basically outlines what the Army looks for in a Soldier to become a drill sergeant candidate.… like being mentally and physically fit, no speech impediments and able to pass a PT test.” Accardi said Reservists are expected to follow the same guide-

Drill Sergeants prepare to recite the Drill Sergeant Creed following their graduation from the U.S. Army Drill Sergeant School, Fort Jackson, S.C. Photo by Staff Sgt. Andrea Smith, 108th Training Command (IET), Public Affairs

lines for training as their active-duty counterparts, except drill sergeant positions are completely voluntary. “We are still recruiting female

drill sergeants heavily because we do need them,” he said. Staff Sgt. Maria Duncan, of C Company, 3rd Battalion, 485th Regi-

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ment, a Reserve unit, said becoming a drill sergeant was one of the best decisions of her career. Originally from the Dallas-Fort Worth area, Duncan previously served on active duty for five years as a track mechanic at Fort Hood, Texas. She entered Army Drill Sergeant School at Fort Jackson, S.C., in June 2012 and later served as a drill sergeant with the 1st Engineer Brigade at Fort Leonard Wood, Mo., before transferring to Fort Benning. “After I moved here … the first unit I found just happened to be a drill sergeant unit and I knew right then that’s where I needed to be,” Duncan said.“As a Reservist, I feel and believe I have more to offer and the best way I can do that is by being a drill sergeant. I’m definitely in the right place.” Duncan said that following the drill sergeant’s creed to lead by example and maintain the Army standards is a duty that must be upheld by any leader -- male or female. “There’s no room for complaints … you’re a drill sergeant and (the trainees) are always watching -- you’ve always got to be on top of your game,” she said. “The job does require a strong body and strong mind. I think training is very important, and to train these Soldiers when it comes to weapons, land navigation, being in the field, you have to have the knowledge of how to do that.”


12 • THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013

Breaking Down Barriers By David McLean 108th Training Command (IET) Public Affairs

The drill sergeant is at the core of training recruits, taking them from civilian to Warrior. Both men and women drill sergeants from active duty and the reserves mold the new Soldiers into the force of today and the future.This position has been iconized in American military and media culture, with many males taking a lead role.The reserve component now has two female graduates that have taken the top graduate spot for the first time since the active duty and reserve joined together to train these pivotal leaders. Sergeant First Class Tracy WilsonGoldwire and Staff Sgt. Charlene Peterson were awarded Distinguished Honor Graduate and Commandant’s List for highest grade point average in consecutive classes at the United States Army Drill Sergeant School at Fort Jackson, S.C. Goldwire also received the Iron Drill Sergeant award for top physical performance in class 507-13, scoring a 363 on the Army Physical Fitness test. Goldwire, a Fort Belvoir Child, Youth and School Services employee has been a Soldier for the reserve for nine years and is with

The reserve component now has two female graduates that have taken the top graduate spot for the first time since the active duty and reserve joined together to train these pivotal leaders, Sergeant 1st Class Tracy Wilson-Goldwire (pictured above) and Staff Sgt. Charlene Peterson. Courtesy Photo

the 3-318th MP OSUT, 98th Training Division (IET), Culpeper Va. She says this honor is part of a bigger picture for her and the future of the Army. “To me, this accomplishment is a blessing, an honor and a privilege,” Goldwire said.“I wanted to become a drill sergeant to shape, mold and change the lives of the Army’s future generation of Warriors. I believe that my future as a drill sergeant will be one filled with challenges, positive outcomes, and the ability to change lives for the better. I only hope and pray that I can continue to be the best drill sergeant that I can be, and continue to make those who believe in me very proud.” Goldwire’s accomplishments were the first for a female drill sergeant from the reserve since the United States Drill Sergeant School consolidated the active duty and reserve component in 2012.The week following her historic success, Peterson duplicated the top honors in class 508-13. The Utah native, Peterson works at the Intermountain Medical Center Central Lab and is a member of C Company, 2/414th Regt., 95th Division (IET), in Fort Douglas, Utah. She attributes her success to proper preparation from her home unit and cohesion at school. “I’m grateful to my unit who helped prepare me for school,” Peterson said.“Less than a month be-

fore my school date, another drill sergeant in my unit returned from Drill Sergeant School. He had made the Commandant’s List, and gave me a good idea of what to expect as well. My classmates were extremely supportive of each other throughout our time together.They were all pulling for me.” Both graduates shared significant events they said will last a lifetime. “The most significant event that happened to me during my training at Drill Sergeant School was the Rite of Passage ceremony,” Goldwire said.“For me, it symbolized the culminating event in all of our hard work and dedication to achieve one of the greatest honors in the military.” “I loved seeing all my classmates walking across the stage with their Drill Sergeant Badges on, receiving their hats, after 65 days of what sometimes seemed like another Basic Training,” Peterson said.“It just made everything so real and so worth it.” With all the success, both of these top drill sergeants found difficulties while learning relearning the basics of their military education. “Some of the difficulties I encountered was learning an entire new set of Modules on Drill and Ceremony week after week,” Goldwire said.“We also had to ensure that after long hours of training and See BREAKING DOWN BARRIERS page 13


THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013 • 13

Inventing a Family Tradition By Wallace McBride Fort Jackson Leader

Sgt. Jesse Tuttle, Company B, 1-330th Infantry Regiment, graduated from the U.S. Army Drill Sergeant School last week. His father, Sgt. 1st Class Michael Tuttle, was in the audience and no stranger to the grounds. Now assigned to Company C, 1-330th Infantry Regiment, the elder Tuttle graduated from the school in 2009. Both men are Army Reservists who reside in Fort Wayne, Ind. “I was very proud,” Michael said.“It was an excellent experience. Going through it yourself is a little bit different than watching your son or daughter go through it. A lot of pride instilled, knowing what they went through, what you went through and knowing they went through the exact same thing at the exact same place.” Jesse said growing up in a military family helped prepare him for the life when he enlisted. “Some people get there, and it’s a whole other world Sgt. Jesse Tuttle, Company B, 1-330th Infantry Regiment, 4th Brigade, 95th Training Division (IET) left, graduated from the for them,” he said.“I felt like that was the U.S. Army Drill Sergeant School last week. His father, Sgt. 1st Class Michael Tuttle, graduated from the school in 2009, and lifestyle I grew up attended his son’s graduation on Fort Jackson last week. with, and it’s suited Photo by Andrew McIntyre, Fort Jackson Leader​ for how the military does things.There was still a lot to learn, but the basic outline was there, which made it easier for me. Some people talk about getting ‘culture shock’ because it’s so different.” Michael has been in the Army for 13 years and decided to pursue the job of a drill sergeant when joining the Reserves. His son sought out the same career path. “The biggest challenge was just always being prepared,” Jesse said of the Drill Sergeant School. “You always had to be prepared. I’ve never been to a school, either civilian or military, with so many tests.This school is really great about showing you what you needed to learn and then testing you.” His advice for Soldiers walking through the doors of the school is simple:“Be prepared to adapt to change and be ready to learn.” “You’re going to be training the sons and daughters or people who don’t have military backgrounds, in a lot of cases,” Michael said.“Basic training is their first view of a military life.You’ve got to mold them into Soldiers who are going to go out and fight for their country.”

Breaking Down Barriers

Graduate studies at

Cont’d from page 12

classroom instruction, we were prepared to return to our rooms, practice PRT for the next day and study a few hours before going to bed only to have to get up and start the process all over again the next morning. Very challenging course I must say!” “By the time set seven of the methods of instruction rolled around, I think everyone’s brain was on memorization overload!” Peterson said.“The first phase test was tough. I didn’t study like I should have and it almost cost me.” Despite the challenges of school, they said the experiences will help to further promote better relations between the active and reserve components. “I hope that I was able to break down some barriers between the Active and Reserve Components as far as the understanding that we, as Reservist, are there for the same reasons they are--to train Soldiers,” Peterson said. “We are fully competent and capable of doing that and then some. I want them to know that, when we come to train with them, we are ready to work, and we can be trusted to train the Soldiers to standard.” These two Soldiers have shown the highest standards and were awarded for their accomplishments, but they say that the awards are not why they went to learn how to train. “Becoming a drill sergeant is the Greatest Honor in the Army,” Goldwire said. “You have the opportunity to change lives, shape the force, transform civilians into Warriors, and take part in something much bigger than YOURSELF..”

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14 • THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013

TASK FORCE COBRA By Maj. Jennifer K. Mack 95th Training Division (IET) Public Affairs

JOINT BASE MCGUIRE-DIX-LAKEHURST, N.J. — As part of Task Force Cobra, 95th Soldiers are training here for their upcoming deployment to Afghanistan for participation in the NATO Training Mission – Afghanistan (NTM-A). Task Force (TF) Cobra is the third iteration to assist in NTM-A. It will replace TF Griffon who deployed in 2012 relieving TF Scorpion. Once Cobra Soldiers are in country, they will be tasked to various locations. Most will serve as police advisors at military training centers throughout Afghanistan and a small contingency will actually work as advisors to key leaders. While at JB M-D-L, the Soldiers are going through the usual warrior training tasks; land navigation and weapons qualification. But more importantly, they’re learning advisor skills.Training in language, region and culture helps Soldiers have a skill set suited for working with the Afghans. Soldiers will also learn how to communicate effectively through interpreters. Brigadier General A. Ray Royalty, the division commander, said advisory training is most critical and Soldiers must be focused. He said, advisors “have to be able to com-

Brigadier Gen. A. Ray Royalty, commanding general of the 95th Training Division (IET) visits Soldiers of Task Force Cobra during driver’s training at Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, N.J. Photo by Maj. Jennifer K. Mack, 95th Training Division (IET), Public Affairs

municate with their Afghan counterparts to be successful.” The task force commander, Lt. Col. John Germann, volunteered for the mission. Prior to volunteering, he was the battalion commander for the 2/377th, 1st Brigade in Lincoln, Neb. He expects to be the site commander at a regional training center in Afghanistan. He said that as an infantry officer, his combat arms profession along with his experience as a battalion commander

makes him uniquely qualified to do the job. Colonel Antonio Morales, previously a brigade commander with the 104th Training Division (LT), is part of the task force. He said,“All the Soldiers are excited about putting their skills to use and looking forward to contributing to the efforts in Afghanistan.” For more information on the task force mission, visit the official NTMA website, www.ntm-a.com.

During the combat lifesaver course, Command Sgt. Maj. Charles Douglas learns application of a tourniquet for self-aid. Douglas will serve as an advisor at the Bridmal Sergeants Major Academy. Photo by Maj. Jennifer K. Mack, 95th Training Division (IET) Public Affairs


16 • THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013

Leader’s Training Course

For four days cadets will go through map reading, terrain walk, and a basic map test. Photo by Master Sgt. Deborah Williams, 108th Training Command (IET), Public Affairs

By Master Sgt. Deborah Williams 108th Training Command (IET) Public Affairs

FORT KNOX, Ky. — It all begins here for the cadre that will be

training over 1,500 cadets.The Leader Training Course (LTC), which began in 1965, is an ROTC summer designed program to develop future officers. Over 1,500 cadets will travel

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to Fort Knox for the course, which includes rappelling off of a 50-foot high tower, crossing a stream on rope bridges, a high rope obstacle course, combat water survival training and military skills training such as land navigation.They will learn a variety of operational and leadership approaches. There will be about 200 cadets per company. Each squad will have a drill sergeant and a newly commissioned lieutenant. Drill Sergeants play a key role during the Leader’s Training Course by indoctrinating cadets to the Army. Throughout the period known as the Soldier First phase, drill sergeants teach students everything from how to make their bunks, military customs and traditions and how to march. “The cadre comes here prior to the cadet’s arrival to prepare and go through all the events to ensure they can meet the test before challeng-


THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013 • 17

Another LTC group exercise is to take a raft, as a team, run around a course and into the water. While in the water, flip the raft over and back, and paddle safely back to shore. Photo by Master Sgt. Deborah Williams, 108th Training Command (IET), Public Affairs

ing the cadets,” said Sgt. 1st Class Eric Faulkner, C Co., 4/399th, 104th Division.“The land navigation course is one of many challenges.” For four days cadets will go through map reading, terrain walk, and a basic map test. Land navigation covers a large area of ground with 10 zones, 48 points, and two well-developed Sand Tables.The area is enclosed by white tape with orange tabs on it warning of unsafe areas, established water points and emergency call areas. The Army Reserve, 95th and 104th Divisions, are a big part of the land navigation set-up.The course is developed from scratch, and designed for beginners.The TOC monitors using graphic control measures, maps, roving gators, five water points, and 100% accountability.

“There is only one way on and one way off.The tape is to ensure no one wanders off and gets lost,” said Cpt. Ron Brunner, 2/397th Bn., 95th Division. “We keep track of everyone on ground.They will be assigned a battle buddy and pass through the main tent placing their name tape on a board, ensuring everyone knows who is out on the trail.” The cadre are validated before the cadets go through the training. “The cadre are required to be familiar with the course and complete the same requirements as the cadets in order to train them.The cadre take written exams plotting points, pace count, terrain assessment, instructing cadets on compass use and finding the four out of five points,” said Drill Sergeant (SFC)

James Taft, 2/397th, 95th Division.“Tonight will also be night land navigation that will last until sometime after midnight.” But these are not the only skills that the cadets will take away from their 29 days of training. Along with leadership skills, cadets will learn teamwork in the team building exercises such as the stream crossing training. Taft explains,“One exercise, run by the active Army, is to build a raft, support two personnel on the raft by taking them out across the water and back to shore safely. Another group takes a raft, as a team, runs around a course and into the water. While in the water, they flip the raft over and back, and paddle safely back to shore.” Also working as a team is the Army Reserve and active Army to ensure the over 1,500 cadets will graduate successfully. Leader Training Course is led by the U.S. Army Cadet Command’s 1st Brigade, which encompasses 11 senior and junior military colleges across the country. For cadets not previously enrolled in ROTC during their freshman or sophomore years in college, LTC prepares college students for entry into the Senior Army ROTC program and helps prepare them to eventually commission into the Army.The final graduation is scheduled for August 11.

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18 • THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013

Drill Sergeants set the tone at course’s start By Crystal Allen

Leader Training Course, Public Affairs

The image of a Leader’s Training Course cadet reflects in the sunglasses of Staff Sergeant Sergio Mesa, a drill sergeant with Bravo Company at LTC. Photo by Jeremy Aaron

As soon as the bus full of Cadets arrived to the Leader’s Training Course, drill sergeants welcomed Cadets in a manner only drill sergeants can: By yelling. From the outset, those Soldiers in the brown round hats circled the bus, expressing a sense of urgency. “Get off the bus!” one commanded. “Hurry!” they ordered. Many Cadets didn’t expect such forcefulness. Some donned dress clothes and even high heels.A rush of Cadets were trying to grab their bags as many, scurrying from the bus, were falling down. Drill sergeants, such as Sgt. 1st Class Vernon Williams, a senior drill sergeant with Bravo Company, got up close and personal as Cadets were ordered into formation. “I was pretty nervous seeing the drill sergeants,” said Cadet Minsog Ryu, a junior at the University of Southern California.“This is my first time ever experiencing something like this.” Drill sergeants play a key role during the Leader’s Training Course, indoctrinating Cadets to the Army during their first few days of training.Throughout that period, known as the Soldier First phase, drill sergeants teach students everything from how to make their bunks, military customs and traditions and how to march. Many people view drill sergeants

as someone who is tough, likes to yell and is demanding on those they lead.And many of the 52 cadre members of Bravo Company say the drills fit that stereotype. But there is a reason for the stern approach — to build these Cadets into Soldiers and leaders. “It’s not that I’m unemotional, it’s that I’m mission-focused,”Williams said.“You want a drill sergeant that can empathize without sympathize. You want a drill sergeant that understands that under any circumstances, the mission comes first.” In fact, you might say the Bravo Company drill sergeants, all of them Reservists, are among the most compassionate people you can find. In their civilian jobs, they save lives as police officers and firefighters, and when they assume their roles as drill sergeants, they’re building the future leaders of the U.S.Army, who will go on to protect others. Sgt. 1st Class Glenn Cadavid, another Bravo senior drill sergeant, is a fireman for his civilian job. Both positions require teamwork and an emphasize safety, he said. “My favorite part of being a drill sergeant is seeing a Soldier initially as they come in as a civilian and as they transition, as we mold them into Soldiers and having a final product as Soldiers and leaders,” Cadavid said. Like Cadavid,Williams’ life revolves around helping others.As a police officer, his job is similar to a drill sergeant because he’s helping protect Americans, he said.While he’s on

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THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013 • 19 duty, his primary focus is strengthen- Company. ing the Army. “Most of them don’t know ex“My favorite part of my job is just actly what it’s like to be in the dayeducating and training,”Williams to-day life of a Soldier,” he said. said.“My main concern is building To graduate from LTC, Cadets the Army and future leaders.” have to successfully complete a Cadavid and Williams, along with rigorous 28 days. Along the way, other drill sergeants, came to Fort the drill sergeants learn some of Knox last week from Miami. the Cadets’ individual characterisBecoming a drill sergeant isn’t tics, helping them learn what motieasy. In the Army career ladder, it’s vates each person, Cadavid said. similar to a promotion. Receiving One of the ways Williams motia spot at the Drill Sergeant School vates Cadets is leading by example, is one of the highest honors a noncommissioned of“My favorite part of my job is just ficer can have.The schooling is a more educating and training. My main intense version of Basic Combat Trainconcern is building the Army ing to ensure drill sergeants are experts and future leaders.” who can properly teach basic Soldier — Sgt. 1st Class Vernon Williams skills to future Cadets. Although the Drill Sergeant he said. If he tells a Cadet he or School curriculum isn’t necessarily she has to finish a course, then he designed to intimidate trainees, the will show them how to do it first, drill sergeants do. Ryu said when Williams said.“One of my favorite he arrived, he tried avoid ing them lines,‘I will never require a Soldier as much as possible. to attempt any task I will not do The fear is starting to go away, myself,’ and I believe that,” he said. he said. In the end, regardless of whethOnce the Cadets step off the er a Cadet graduates, he or she will bus in front of their barracks and take something valuable from it, the drill sergeants get up close and Williams said. personal, Cadets fear what they’ve “You’ve influenced their lives in never known, said Staff Sgt. Sergio a positive way in some way, fashion Mesa, a drill sergeant with Bravo or form,”Williams said.

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Drill sergeants play a key role during the Leader’s Training Course, indoctrinating Cadets to the Army during their first few days of training. Photo by Jeremy Aaron


20 • THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013

Warrior Forge Leadership Development Assessment Course By Maj. Alex L. Johnson 104th Training Division (LT), Public Affairs

JOINT BASE LEWIS-McCHORD, Wash. ­— At one of the largest CONUS training events held each year, Leadership Development Assessment Course (LDAC), more than six hundred Army Reserve Trainers and drill sergeants found their summer home at Joint Base Lewis-McChord to support the U.S. Army Cadet Command’s training and evaluation of Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC) cadets from across the country. Reserve Officer Training Corps is a college-based program that trains the largest source of commissioned officers for both the Active Duty and the Army Reserve. Although the name reflects the ‘Reserve’, few realize the large role that Army Reserve cadre, trainers and drill sergeants play in the development of our Army’s future leaders. With the 104th Training Division Timberwolves at the forefront, they garnered support from both the 95th and 98th Training Divisions (IET), as well as USCAPOC,

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Career Day By Maj. Alex L. Johnson 104th Training Division (LT), Public Affairs

JOINT BASE LEWIS-McCHORD, Wash. — The Warrior Forge training conducted at Joint Base Lewis-McChord not only trained and evaluated cadets from across the country but also provided an opportunity for the cadets to take the first steps in planning their military career. Career Day, also referred to as branch orientation, allowed the cadets to become more familiar with their options for the future. But it wasn’t just Combat Arms and Combat Service Support that were providing information for the future.The United States Army Reserve Command and the 104th Training Division (IT) teamed up to provide cadets the opportunity to find and reserve a slot in an Army Reserve Unit in their hometowns or their anticipated destination after college. In just the first two Career Day rotations, that supported five cadet training regiments, two hundred and ninety-eight cadets were assessed into the Army Reserves and made reservations for their first job in the Army. The planning assistance wasn’t limited to their military careers, however. Cadets were introduced to Hero 2 Hired (www. h2h.jobs), a civilian job service program focused on providing opportunities to Army Reservist and their families. In addition to finding job opportunities with military-friendly companies, H2H also provided career exploration tools, military0to0civilian skills translations, education and training resources. Download the mobile application and make use of this Yellow Ribbon Reintegration Program. It’s available for all Reservist and their family members. Six hundred and forty-four cadets took the opportunity to register with H2H. Don’t leave this great job resource to the new lieutenants. Register at www.h2h.jobs and see what new opportunities might await you.


THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013 • 21

to provide Cadet Command and the ROTC cadets the best possible training experience. The 95th and 98th trainers and drill sergeants conducted Basic Rifle Marksmanship and ran the cadets through their paces for the APFT and on the Field Leadership Reaction Course.The Timberwolves were spread across JBLM North Fort and Main Post conducting First Aid, NBC, Confidence Courses, Land

Navigation, Live Fire Ranges and more, while USACAPOC conducted Cultural Awareness. The Reserve provides a critical component in the success of the Cadet Command mission.The Timberwolf Forward Support Element, a platoon size force, spent the summer at JBLM North Fort executing the coordination for transportation, meals, accommodations and other necessities for Army Reserve Trainers and

The Timberwolves were spread across JBLM North Fort and Main Post conducting First Aid, NBC, Confidence Courses, Land Navigation, Live Fire Ranges and more … Photos by Master Sgt. Deborah P. Williams, 108th Training Command (IET) Public Affairs

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22 • THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013

mtvU ROTC Challenge By Capt. Tracey Frink 108th Training Command (IET) Public Affairs

FORT KNOX, Ky. — The morning mist and fog obscure the frantic search for materials at the edge of the lake. Collegiate team members scream back and forth about the plan not working while other teams are set to launch their watercraft. As the sun rises and increases the heat of the day, the frustration builds, and one team successfully makes their way across the lake. All captured on camera, but it is not one of the typical reality shows. This show features the up and coming Army leaders battling for bragging rights in the public arena. As a part of U.S. Army Cadet Command’s Leadership Training Course program, MTV’s mtvU ROTC Challenge demonstrates the ideas of leadership in a multi-part, multi-event reality series highlighting what attributes are needed to be a leader. The mtvU ROTC Cadet Challenge held at Fort Knox, Ky., geared towards recruiting commissioned officers, enlists members of the 108th Training Command (IET) and U.S. Army Cadet Command that kicks off the annual ROTC Leaders Training Course. The 108th Training Command (IET) supports U.S.Training and Doctrine Command by providing over 1900 drill sergeants and 200 ROTC instructors to support yearly training events for Leadership Development Advance Course (LDAC) in Fort Lewis, Wash., Leaders Training Course (LTC), Fort Knox, Ky., and numerous events to support shaping events throughout the country. In addition to increasing visibility of ROTC, mtvU spokesman Jake Urbanski said,“mtvU ROTC Challenge” is an opportunity to display college students on a national level as they compete in an intense fitness competition. The mtvU ROTC Challenge incorporates four events from LTC to challenge three teams, each from a different university, University of Louisville, Vanderbilt University and Texas A&M, in a four day period. The teams participating consist of two ROTC cadets and a civilian student member all selected through a rigorous application process. Each of the events requires the teams to work together in order to complete each obstacle in every event. How well the teams work together and follow the Army leadership principles to complete the events immediately impacts the results of team rankings. When asked about experiences during the competition, Alysa Dutkowsky,Texas A&M civilian team member said,“I get to learn a lot about ROTC, both my parents were in the military but I never knew about the “be-

The Texas team plows ahead of the competition, moving a sled with 50 pounds of weight from one end of the sandpit to the other. The multi-obstacle event challenges the teams through endurance, teamwork and agility, three characteristics that Army officers need to lead troops on the battlefield. Photo by Capt. Tracey Frink, 108th Training Command (IET) Public Affairs

Sliding on the zip line, Andrew Steen prepares for a hard landing after accomplishing the rigorous high ropes course. Photo by Capt. Tracey Frink, 108th Training Command (IET) Public Affairs

hind the scenes” and [my fellow cadets] are good at explaining things about [Army leadership].” Jin-Mi Matsunaga, a cadet team member from Vanderbilt University team, indicates this is her first-ever leadership experience and it’s been beneficial because it forced her not be afraid, to take charge and to get the mission done. “Ultimately this

event symbolizes our ability to protect American citizens and our way of life,” said Matsunaga. Much like when Army units deploy, these team members had no idea of what to expect when they arrived at Fort Knox on day one as all the events were kept secret until that day’s competition.“There’s a lot of mystery involved,”Andrew

Steen, Vanderbilt University cadet team member, said.“There’s not much time to prepare and plan for everything.” Steen’s civilian teammate, Joshua Tiensivu, said his experiences competing will translate well into his future plans, indicating “you can’t be too strong or too good of a leader.” See CHALLENGE page 23


THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013 • 23

Helping shape boys into men By Staff Sgt. Deidra Jackson 108th Training Command (IET), Public Affairs

DALLAS, Texas — The Steve Harvey Mentoring Camp is a program started by Steve Harvey and his wife Marjorie. The mission of the camp is to share, teach and demonstrate the principles of manhood to young men, enabling them to achieve their dreams and become men who are strong, responsible and productive. The program admits 100 young men a year and was held in Dallas,Texas on Harvey’s 300-acre ranch. “These boys come from homes that are headed by single moms, so there is no male influence in their lives. Our job is to teach them the discipline of manhood,” said Harvey. The goal of the mentoring weekend is to break the misguided traits of manhood and introduce role models who provide positive examples of manhood. With this in mind, the program, which has been in place since 2009, enlists the help of the U.S. Army, both active and reserve to help coach and guide the young men. Several Soldiers from different areas of the country are chosen to participate in the mentoring weekend. The Soldiers are chosen based on packets submitted to a panel.This year Drill Sergeant Mike Lowe and Drill Sergeant Latravious Black both from the 4/323, 98th Training Command (IET) in Montgomery, Ala. were selected to represent the 108th Training Command. “My role, just like in the Army, is to instill discipline as well as coach and mentor these mentees on what it is Mr. Harvey wants them to understand,” said Lowe. The aim of the camp is to instill certain values and principles into

Challenge

Cont’d from page 22

The obstacles, rappelling, high rope climbing, survival raft building and river crossing, are similar to what Army servicemembers incorporate into their wartime training. General Robert W. Cone,TRADOC Commanding General, reminds us “while we must never lose track of the fact that we still have Soldiers deployed and in danger across the globe, we must also prepare our ‪U.S. Army‬ for the future.” The mtvU ROTC Challenge will premiere in September as a multiple part series, one episode per each event.The winning team will attend the MTV Woody Awards to receive their award on national television.

Drill Sergeant Mike Lowe of the 323rd Battalion located in Montgomery, Ala. is in the push-up position during physical training. Photo by Staff Sgt. Deidra Jackson, 108th Training Command (IET), Public Affairs

the young men.These principles are similar to the Army core values that every Soldier learns during initial entry training.The camp lasted five days and four nights during which the drill sergeants were able to do physical training and team building exercises. “We not only do the physical training and team building exercises we are also housed in the same area,” said Black. “We do what they do, so they see they’re not alone, we’re a team,” he said. “As a leader I believe that one must serve, so my service opportunities aren’t just delegated through the Army and to be one of the great leaders it starts with service,” said Lowe.

Drill Sergeant Latravious Black is having a face-to-face moment with a mentee on the first day of the mentoring program. Photo by Staff Sgt. Deidra Jackson, 108th Training Command (IET), Public Affairs

Battalion Training Exercise By Capt. Kevin Ponder

C Co, 1/320th Commander 98th Training Division (IET)

LEXINGTON, Va. — During July battle assembly, the 1/320th Battalion, 98th Training Division (IET), held their third annual combatives and fight weekend field training exercise (FTX). The FTX was held on the campus of the Virginia Military Institute (VMI). This battle assembly (BA) included repelling over the Maury River Cliff. The repelling lanes were facilitated by VMI Cadre. Additional highlights of the weekend in-

cluded the obstacle and confidence courses on campus and a battalion run on Saturday. In previous years, the 1/320th utilized the VMI high ropes and air assault courses. On the final day of BA the battalion got rough with a combatives review facilitated by Staff Sgt. Chase Lester from Delta Company followed by basic army boxing. Using the VMI boxing facilities, Maj. David Ward instructed the battalion in the proper form and function of throwing and blocking punches. Ward lives in Philadelphia, Pa. and joins the 1/320th each year for fight

weekend. The Combatives FTX originated within the battalion in Delta Company (Dublin, Va.) to increase unit cohesion and morale. The BA FTX has turned into a way for the battalion to showcase itself to the public and potential recruits. No one joins the Army to spend his or her battle assembly weekends inside the drill hall. POC for the July 1/320 Battalion FTX is Capt. Ponder, kevin.b.ponder@us.army.mil, 540-449-9962.


24 • THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013

Cutting Edge Technology

Members of the Headquarters, 2-399 Regt., 1st Bde., 104th Training Division (LT), Fort Knox, Ky., took advantage of a rare and unique opportunity to train the headquarter element on a variety of command, control and communication skills using a cutting edge technology called the Dismounted Soldier Training System (DSTS).


THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013 • 25

By Lt. Col. Sue Henderson 2-399 Regt., 1st Bde. 104th Training Division (LT)

FORT KNOX, Ky. — Twelve members of the Headquarters, 2-399 Regt., 1st Bde., 104th Training Division (LT), located at Fort Knox, Ky., took advantage of a rare and unique opportunity to train the headquarter element on a variety of command, control and communication skills using a cutting edge technology called the Dismounted Soldier Training System (DSTS). The purpose of the training was threefold. The battalion commander wanted to provide an event for the staff that tested their ability to work together as a team, communicate effectively to complete a mission, and use the military decision making process to lead a team through a virtual tactical environment. The DSTS is the first ever fully immersive virtual simulation training for U.S. Soldiers. It provides the dismounted Soldier with the ability to engage point, or area targets, with a doctrinally assigned weapon and move as part of a squad. The battalion staff element was suited up with: • A helmet-mounted display (HMD) that attached to Soldier’s helmet including headphones

and a microphone for voice and radio communications. • Computer backpack for processing and display of the 3D virtual environment. • Sensors for tracking body positions. • Instrumented weapons with optics, sights, and scopes. The battalion staff used their bodies to perform complex motion maneuvers, such as leaning around or under an obstacle by physically mimicking those actions, or to communicate with others. Their natural movements were translated and used to control their “Avatar” within the simulation. The battalion commander and command sergeant major were able to give orders, provide intelligence, issue FRAGOs via radio while controlling the virtual environment using a computer control panel. The staff completed an obstacle course in the virtual environment as an “Avatar”, engaged targets on a 200 meter range, cleared a three story building, engaged enemy combatants, and assaulted an enemy compound. “This type of training environment was ideal for giving our junior members a chance to lead in a low threat learning environment”, commented Capt. Billy Hyatt, the

The Dismounted Soldier Training System (DSTS) is the first ever fully immersive virtual simulation training for U.S. Soldiers.

battalion S3. Specialist Joshua Sicka- environment, with all of the chaos that comes with it, showed their foos and Spc. Fawn Cruz, both with ability to communicate, adapt, and experience ‘gaming’, were assigned improvise when things didn’t go as to the squad leader roles, allowing planned”. them to learn and gain confidence The DSTS was an ideal method in a leadership role. for a battalion commander to exer“I couldn’t have been happier cise and evaluate his/her staff on with the outcome of this training a key METL task (command and event”, stated Lt. Col. Sue Hencontrol), while simultaneously pracderson, battalion commander of ticing individual Soldier skills and the 2-399 Regt.“The staff already movement techniques in a resource worked well as a team, but throwconstrained ing themHBinto a virtual training Franchise Ad - The Griffon Mag PRDXN.pdf 1 7/19/13environment. 2:27 PM

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26 • THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013

Drill Sergeants prepare for the summer surge By 1st Lt. Daniel Maher 3/385th, 4th Bde, 98th Training Division (IET)

prepared to perform at the highest standards.” The training scenario the drill sergeants faced was the rescue of a downed U.S. pilot from within an enemy encampment. The scenario began with the issue of the Warning Order and then the Operations Order. Leaders were then required to organize a plan which included movement and extraction. The focus of the training event was the execution of battle drills that highlighted individual and team Soldier

methods for simulating close-quarter engagements. It was there they decided to use the Ultimate Training Munitions (UTM) system.This method was picked over using the Multiple Integrated Laser Engagement System (MILES) or blank ammunition with blank firing adapters on the weapons. With UTM, Soldiers can engage the “enemy” with their assigned weapons by replacing the bolt carrier with an UTM conversion kit. This kit allows the weapon to fire

UTM, if Soldiers didn’t get behind cover, they were shot with a blank or their MILES gear went off,” said Arroyo. “If you are exposed in this training, it stings. However, the risk assessment for this training is low after you factor in the protective gear and the reduced velocities of the UTM cartridges. We had zero injuries, and our drill sergeants were impressed with the system.” Toward the end of the day, the sun began to set and the radios and machine-gun fire silenced.

JOINT BASE MCGUIRE-DIX-LAKEHURST, N.J. — The pre-dawn stillness here at Range 29 was disturbed by the gurgle of diesel engines, as drill sergeants from the 3rd Battalion, 385th Regiment, 4th Brigade, 98th Training Division pulled up to begin off-loading weapons and ammunition in preparation for the day’s training April 5. However, these drill sergeants based in nearby Edison, N.J. weren’t training Privates. They were training their own battalion of U.S. Army Reserve drill sergeants in the latest tactics and training equipment. The knowledge learned here continued to prepare them for summer missions of training newly-enlisted Soldiers at Basic Combat Training facilities throughout the country. As high school ends each year, thousands of men and women prepare Iroquois Warriors position themselves to secure a Medical Evacuation Drill Sergeants Lacasse and Gomez from the 3-385th Battalion, 4th Brito step into life in the Landing Zone at the conclusion of an exercise at Joint Base McGuire-Dixgade, 98th Division, demonstrate technique employing hand grenades Army. Throughout the Lakehurst. Photo by Sgt. 1st Class Tammy Roche-Schau, HHC 3-385th, 4th at Range 3, as Drill Sergeant Marshall passes on his instructional methyear, Reserve drill serBde., 98th Training Division (IET) ods. Photo by Sgt. 1st Class Tammy Roche-Schau, HHC 3-385th, 4th Bde., geants spend hours upon 98th Training Division (IET) hours maintaining their proficiency to ensure the training specially designed, non-lethal mark- The pilot was successfully rescued they provide reflects the rewards of skills. “The intent of these exercises ing cartridges. The weapon is also and the training was complete. joining the Army Family. is to meet or exceed training and rendered incapable of firing live It was then the drill sergeants of “We take our training very seridoctrine standards set forth by the ammunition. the 3-385th reflected on lessons ously and try to make it as realDepartment of the Army,” said MiAll Soldiers going through the learned and how they could best world as possible,” said Lt. Col. Mikulski. training lanes wear protective face pass this information on to the inichael Mikulski, 3-385th commander. Leaders from the 3-385th met gear, but other areas of their bodies tial entry training Soldiers they will “The transition from civilian to with the Training Support Center are exposed. Failure to seek cover train. Soldier is a big adjustment, and on post during their event planduring UTM training will result in a If you are interested in becomwe train so our drill sergeants are ning stages to determine the best stinging sensation where the UTM ing a drill sergeant in the 3-385th, marking cartridge hits. It’s what 4th BDE, 98th Training Division and Master Sgt. Alex Arroyo, Battalion currently hold the rank of SpecialOperations NCO, refers to as a pain ist through Sergeant First Class, call: penalty for mistakes. Sgt. 1st Class Ty Buras at (732) 287“Pain is a great motivator. Before 5454 Ext. 235.

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Spc. Santana (left) and Sgt. Gomez (right) triage Staff Sergeant Quimby who were portraying a casualty during the walk-through phase of tactical exercises at Range 3. Photo by Sgt. 1st Class Tammy Roche-Schau, HHC 3-385th, 4th Bde., 98th Training Division (IET)


THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013 • 27

Best Warrior Competition Train-Up By Master Sgt. Deborah Williams 108th Training Command (IET) Public Affairs

EASTOVER, S.C. — Classes begin early at Camp McCrady for the Soldiers learning the skills necessary to compete in the USARC Best Warrior Competition. Master Sgt. Morrison, 108th Training Command (IET) said,“Once these Soldiers complete these train-up classes they will be more prepared when they continue on to the USARC competition next.” They are trained on how to use, break down and put a variety of weapons together to include the 50 CAL Machine Gun, M16, M240B, 9MM, and the SAW. Instructions expand on nonlethal weapons explaining using weapons in your tool box and the appropriate tool for any given situation. “We are not suppose to use any tools to disassemble or assemble the weapons,” said Spc. Russell Williams, 1/417th 3rd Bde., 98th Training Division (IET).“When using a new weapon it is a pain and these hand guards are hard to remove.The old weapons are better, but there will probably be new ones at the competition so we have to train with the new one.”Williams is from Westville, South Jersey. Selected CTT Skill Level Task are See BEST WARRIOR page 28

Sgt. 1st Class Shane Hinton, 3/339th, 95th Division (IET), and Staff Sgt. Joshua Allen, 2nd Bde., 98th Division (IET) are instructed on how to dissemble and assemble the 50 Cal Machine Gun. Photo by Master Sgt. Deborah Williams, 108th Training Command (IET) Public Affairs

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28 • THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013

Best Warrior Cont’d from page 27

Spc. Russell Williams, 1/417th 3rd Bde., 98th Training Division (IET), operates the Reconfigurable Vehicle Tactical Trainer (RTTV) convoy simulator. Photo by Master Sgt. Deborah Williams, 108th Training Command (IET) Public Affairs

Master Sgt. Carlos Arrieta, 108th Training Command (IET), mentors Spc. Russell Williams, 1/417th 3rd Bde., 98th Training Division (IET) by showing him techniques to break down and assemble the 9mm. Best time for Williams was 1:5. Photo by Master Sgt. Deborah Williams, 108th Training Command (IET) Public Affairs

also taught, such as protecting yourself from chemical, biological, radiological, and nuclear (CBRN) injury or contamination with the JLIST Chemical-Protective Ensemble, communicate by sending Spot (SPOTREP) and Situation (SITREP) Reports, operate SINCGARS, LACE, 9 Line, and dagger and compass training. “It is fun to do.We do not get to do a lot of these task skills quickly. Dagger is not something we do and being a drill sergeant, from my standpoint, it keeps you up-to-date,” said Staff Sgt. Joshua Allen, 2nd Bde., 98th Division (IET). Allen graduated from the Drill Sergeant School at Fort Jackson, S.C., a year ago.“I was a small arms instructor and before that, I was a recruiter for three years on active duty.When I got out, I became a detective in New York for two years and now a cop at Folly Beach, Charleston, S.C.” It is called the “Petting Zoo”, but do not pet anything in this zoo.They are Implosive and Vehicle Improvised Devices, known as IEDs and VBIEDs. The Soldiers completed a round robin demonstration of the nine principles of what to look for and what to do if encountering any of these. Most of them are simple, which is better for the enemy, but vigilance and observation is what this training is all about, winning hearts and minds. “This is simulated convoy operations, rolling out on missions, calling in 9-line medi-vacs, and helping to recognize any dangers such as IEDs and VBIEDs.This is very important and more difficult under fire so these Soldiers should study the 9-line medi-vacs on their own, in addition to this training. Practice makes perfect,” said Drill Sergeant Brett McCall. With the addition of the Reconfigurable Vehicle Tactical Trainer (RTTV) convoy simulation training is more realistic. “I was helping with the Task Force Marshall mission and was asked to help with the Best Warrior train-up,” said Sgt. 1st Class James Powers.“I feel the training for the Soldiers for Best Warrior Training is more realistic, especially the RTTV training before going on convoys.” Each Soldier had their own individual sponsor to assist them.Allen’s sponsor was encouraged by the training given to the Soldiers. “The First Aide, STXX Lanes, and everything these Soldiers have been given during this training will be helpful.Allen is doing good and being a cop should be a plus,” agrees Sgt. 1st Class Robert Minett, 1/321st, 98th Division (IET). All in all it was good training in a short period of time.These Soldiers were given the tools and information needed to compete. “These Soldiers are doing good in such a short period of time.We have given them the ability to use handson with the RTTV convoy simulation and the dismantling and assembly of weapons.We have given them the information they need to help them,” McCall concluded.


THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013 • 29

2013 Army Reserve Best Warrior—­ Reservist stays Army strong while competing for Best Warrior By Cpl. Charlotte Fitzgerald Subscribe To This Journalist U.S. Army Reserve Command

FORT MCCOY, Wis. — To say his road to success has been tough, would almost be an understatement. Nevertheless, this Westville, N.J., native has managed to remain in high spirits as he continues to compete in the 2013 Army Reserve Best Warrior. Spc. Russell Williams, a member of the 108th Training Command based out of Blackwood, N.J., is the oldest competitor in this level of the Army Reserve Best Warrior Competition. He is in the same category as Soldiers half his age, yet he shows the same competitive spirit they do and says he has a few reasons for being here. “I re-enlisted a year ago, February,”Williams said.“My intention is to go to drill sergeant school and to earn an Airborne slot.” The 42 year old said he served previously for four years, but had to take a 15 year break in service because his dad became ill and he needed to take care of him. He has now re-enlisted to complete the goals he had then. After arriving at the 108th, Williams said they asked him if he would like to compete in their Best Warrior competition and he jumped at the chance. “I saw it as an opportunity to remember stuff from before, but also as a way to learn some of the newer things,” he said. At one point during the 108th’s competition, Williams said he surprised his scorer by using an older method of applying a splint during a Combat Life Saver scenario. “I applied a tourniquet to the arm, and then realized there was also a leg fracture,”Williams said. “I looked at this new foam splint I guess the Army has now, threw it over my shoulder because I had no idea what it was and went to retrieve two sticks and made the

splint. I looked at her surprised face and pointed out that I had still properly splinted the fracture.” While he has been competing in these competitions, however, Williams has had to face more than the struggles of age. He was recently laid off of his civilian job of heating and air conditioning and has become a stay at home dad for his two daughters. Williams has also faced yet another set of upheavals. “I also have extra motive for competing,”Williams said.“My nephew was a sergeant 1st class on active duty and he was killed in a motorcycle accident. My mother also recently passed away and we buried her with my father.” Williams said he also lost another close friend right before coming to Wisconsin. He keeps a ring on his dog tags and a service coin from his friend’s service in his pocket to remember those that he has lost. Despite all of the sadness and hardships, Williams remains strong and continues to push himself as he moves forward and continues to compete for Best Warrior. “Being older than the other competitors, they have a physical advantage because their bodies recover quicker, but I have the knowledge and experience they don’t have,” he said.“Because of that knowledge and experience, I will approach a situation a little more relaxed and that helps give you an advantage.” Williams said that being his age and making it to this level of the competition is pretty good. He is proud of how well everyone works with each other and said there are a lot of good guys competing. “When I look back and retire, I want to be able to say that I did some good things here and I accomplished the goals I set out to,” he said. Williams will begin drill sergeant school when he finishes the competitions and said he was recently called back to his job as well.

U.S. Army Spc. Russell Williams, assigned to the 108th Training Command, loads ammunition into a clip as he prepares to qualify with his M4 rifle during the 2013 Army Reserve Best Warrior Competition at Fort McCoy, Wis., June 26, 2013. U.S. Army photo by Cpl. Charlotte Fitzgerald/Released

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30 • THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013

Army Reserve Best Warrior Competition supported by the total force

U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Brett Andress, drill sergeant assigned to the 108th Training Command, prepares Soldiers for the M4 rifle qualification event during the 2013 Army Reserve Best Warrior Competition at Fort McCoy, Wis., June 26, 2013 Photo by Staff. Sgt. Amanda Smolinski, U.S. Army Reserve Command

By Staff Sgt. Amanda Smolinski U.S. Army Reserve Command

FORT MCCOY, Wis. — “Your task here is to search a detainee according to performance steps, locate and confiscate all weapons, contraband and any items of intelligent value. Hooah! Do you understand what you must do?” asked Staff Sgt. Martin Jones, drill sergeant from the 108th Training Command in Charlotte, N.C. Approximately 200 Army Reserve support personnel served as cadre and subject matter experts during the 2013 Army Reserve Best Warrior competition held here June 23-28, to include drill sergeants like Jones. “We reached down to all of our major commands and pulled-in our specialized unit personnel to include units like the 377th Theater Sustainment Command, because operations and training is their job,” said Sgt. Maj. Richard Prater, the U.S. Army Reserve Command noncommissioned officer in charge of the competition. “And who is always rehearsing soldier skills?” he asked.“The drill sergeants. So, we pulled in the 108th Training Command. “I think that everyone would agree, there is a certain ‘air’ about a drill sergeant. You see the hat, and it commands a certain level of re-

spect,” Prater said.“I wouldn’t have anyone else run the skill level one events.” There were 39 soldiers representing the major Army Reserve commands who were tested against one another on their basic Soldier

skills to include warrior tasks and training, written exams, and the more physical events such a 10km ruck march and the Army Physical Fitness Test. However, in Prater’s second year overseeing the competition, his goal was to ensure that

repeat competitors experience a fresh and challenging competition. “I added 10 mystery events this year,” Prater said.“On the day the competitors were in-processing, they walked into a suicide awareness scenario, and not one of them

U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Martin Jones, drill sergeant assigned to the 108th Training Command, prepares Soldiers to search a detainee during a training event in the 2013 Army Reserve Best Warrior Competition at Fort McCoy, Wis., June 25, 2013. Photo by Staff. Sgt. Amanda Smolinski, U.S. Army Reserve Command


THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013 • 31 knew that it wasn’t real.” Well-rehearsed role-players from the 377th Theater Sustainment Command’s chaplain office were staged in office buildings where each competitor was sent to in order to complete their in-processing checklist. However, when they walked into the building, they met role-players who portrayed individuals suffering from post-postpartum depression, a military technician facing the furlough with a wife who is threatening to take their kids and leave him, post-traumatic stress disorder, or infidelity. “The feedback from that mystery event was fantastic,” Prater said. “They won’t forget it because they lived through it, not knowing that any of it wasn’t real. Some soldiers were so visibly upset, we had to sit them down and calm them because they were upset with themselves that they missed those signals, and they had potentially walked away from someone that was suicidal.” Sgt. Maj. James Stewart, role-player and 377th chief chaplain’s assistant, said the invisible wounds such as depression, anxiety, and posttraumatic stress disorders are the hardest to identify because they are internal. “One suicide is one too many, so if we can just make an impact on even one life if one soldier raises his or her hand and says,‘this training helped me save one of my battle buddy’s life, then we were successful,’” said Stewart. Prater aims to take issues that soldiers are facing now, such as suicide intervention, and implement them into the Best Warrior Competition. “Only in the Army Reserve can we pull a plethora of skill sets together and create an exercise like this,” Prater said. When Prater initially welcomed the competitors to the Best Warrior Competition, he remembered

U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Matt Vanwagner, drill sergeant assigned to the 108th Training Command, stands as a guard and evaluator for a competitor during a detainee search event in the 2013 Army Reserve Best Warrior Competition at Fort McCoy, Wis., June 25, 2013. Photo by Staff. Sgt. Amanda Smolinski, U.S. Army Reserve Command

the look in their eyes when he asked,“who here is going to be the best warrior?” and everybody in the room raised their hand. “That’s what I was looking for,” Prater said.“Not only do we pull in the best competitors, but the best support personnel, so I can’t say enough how hard the cadre have worked to make this, the best event possible.”


32 • THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013

Army Reserve Best Warrior stays physically, mentally strong

U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Joshua Allen, assigned to the 98th Training Division, runs to the finish line during the 10 kilometer road march of the 2013 Army Reserve Best Warrior competition at Fort McCoy, Wis., June 26, 2013. U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Carina Garcia/Released

By Sgt. Carina Garcia U.S. Army Reserve Command

FORT McCOY, Wis. — A soldier’s physical and mental fitness is pushed to the limit while participating in the 2013 Army Reserve Best Warrior competition at Fort McCoy, Wis. Staff Sgt. Joshua Allen, repre-

senting the 98th Training Division, North Charleston, S.C., will use his strength, endurance, time management, and multi-tasking skills to try and overcome the challenges of the events. Allen a native of Durhamville, N.Y., has been in the Army for 12 years, both in the active duty and

reserve components. During his active duty time, Allen spent three years in the recruiting command where he was awarded the Gold Recruiters Badge for recruiting a high number of new soldiers. As an infantryman with the 101st Airborne Division, Allen deployed to both Afghanistan (2002-2003) as

a team leader in weapons squad and Iraq (2003-2004) as a team leader in a line rifle squad. “My biggest accomplishment was taking care of my Soldiers and making sure they came back home alright,”Allen said.“While over there not only physically but mentally as well and when they got back making sure they got everything that they needed.” Allen is currently working pursuing a degree in Applied Science and focused on attending as many military schools as possible such as Ranger school, Pathfinder school and Sniper school with the hope of one day becoming a highranking noncommissioned officer. “I plan on staying in-till I retire. Being a first sergeant would be great, sergeant major would be better,” he said. When not attending Army Reserve training, Allen works as a detective for the Folly Beach Police Department, in South Carolina, and in the process of training to become a certified firefighter. “Folly beach is public safety and we need to do dual roles,”Allen said. “Both jobs are pretty demanding so you constantly need to stay in top physical condition, mentally being able to multi-task, and have great time management skills.” “Being a drill sergeant in the Army Reserve and detective people assume I’m hard but I am really the most easy going laid back fun guy, my personal life definitely does not reflect my professional life,”Allen said.


THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013 • 33

Third Brigade, 98th Changes Command By Maj. Lisa Kelly 3rd Brigade, 98th Training Command (IET)

SALEM, Va. — After three years in command, Col. Daniel E. Reid relinquished command of the 3rd Brigade, 98th Training Division (IET) to Col. Keith P. Brelia on May 5, 2013.The change of command is a time honored tradition that symbolizes the transition of leadership through the passing of the colors from the outgoing to the incoming commander. Brig. Gen. Mikey Kloster, commanding general of the 98th Training Division (IET) presided over the event, which included the 1/320th Color Guard and leadership with Colors from the brigade’s five subordinate battalions. The commander of troops for the ceremony was Lt. Col. Bob Sile, executive officer, 3rd Brigade. Under Reid’s leadership, the brigade excelled in its mission to support Army training centers with qualified drill sergeants and increased its readiness through two annual brigade field training exercises that included medical and five event company competitions. During his tenure, the brigade also supported multiple mobilizations in support of contingency operations.A formal dining out was held to honor Reid and to recognize his retirement after 30 years of service in the Active and Reserve Army. Brelia joins the 3rd Brigade after serving as the 98th Training Division (IET) G-3.After taking command, Brelia spoke to Soldiers and challenged them to be physically and mentally ready for any mission, everyday. Within the brigade, four battalions have also seen a transition of leadership and change of command ceremony. Lt. Col. George S. Fest replaced Lt. Col. Gary Bissell to command the 1-320 Battalion (Abingdon,Va.) on May 5, 2013. Fest comes to the battalion from his previous position as the Deputy Exercise Director for the Central Asia Regional Cooperation Exercise with the J7 Joint Special Troops Command (J-STC). Lt. Col. John Vernick replaced Lt. Col.Alan Zentar to command the 1-417 Battalion (Blackwell, N.J.) on

The passing of the colors from Col. Daniel E. Reid to Brig. Gen. Mikey Kloster, commanding general of the 98th Training Division (IET). Reid relinquished command of the 3rd Brigade, 98th Training Division (IET) to Col. Keith P. Brelia on May 5, 2013. Photo by Sara Shropshire, 3rd Brigade, 98th Training Command (IET)

June 2, 2013. Vernick comes to the battalion after serving with the 98th Training Division (IET) as the full time AGR in S3 and a mobilization in the Inspector General’s office for USSCOM just prior to taking command. Lt. Col. Frank A. Palombaro replaced Lt. Col. William Hardee to command the 1-317 Battalion (Suffolk, Va.) on June 2, 2013. Prior to taking command, Palombaro served as the Personnel Management Officer for the National Capital Region Physical Evaluation Board for 3 ½ years. Maj. David Wallace will replace Lt. Col. Voris McBurnette to lead the 2-317 Battalion (Lynchburg, Va.) on July 6, 2013 as the interim commander. Wallace is the current Executive Officer for 2-317th.

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34 • THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013

From the 95th Division Commander...

By Brig. Gen. A. Ray Royalty Commanding General 95th Training Division (IET)

Soldiers and Warriors of the 95th Training Division (IET) — hooah — trust this finds our formation — individually and collectively — continuing to work ongoing mission sets with passion and a deliberate intent toward successful outcomes while completing the mission above and beyond all expectations.The past couple months have brought — and continues to

bring — multiple challenges and opportunities in a dynamic and complex environment.The division continues to stand ready – mentally, physically, and spiritually — in support of any/all incoming 108th Training Command (IET) directed missions without failure. We remain prepared to execute every mission with no room for failure — partial or complete - at a time in our history that defines the future of our American way of life. This challenge exists within a global community that continues to transform beyond one’s imagination at a pace that far exceeds our understanding most times. I would like to take this opportunity to thank Maj. Gen. Robert Stall for his tireless and dedicated service in support of this division over the past couple years and most especially, for his outstanding leadership while serving as the commanding general, 108th Training Command (IET). Because of Stall’s passion for excellence, commitment to mission accomplishment, and visionary leadership, this division is better positioned for future taskings — both unforeseen and predictable — in a manner that reflects relevance to the Unit-

ed States Army and the American people. Stall presented, explained, and lived a warrior spirit while exercising the exact tenets of servant leadership in a vivid and thought provoking way that instilled all of us to do our very best even at a time of significant obstacles. I am a better Soldier and American today having had the opportunity to serve with Stall in the Army Reserve. Thank you sir — as the division wishes you continued success in the civilian sector and the very best for you and your family into the future. Meantime, it is also an honor to welcome Maj. Gen. Leslie Purser as the incoming commanding general, 108th Training Command (IET) on behalf of the 95th Training Division (IET). Purser brings a wealth of knowledge and experiences that benefits this division in many ways. Purser has operated at some of the highest levels — operationally and strategically — within our military in a manner that reflects an ongoing drive for the highest standards, practical application, and mission accomplishment. Without a doubt, Purser brings an attitude that cultivates a culture of building strong leaders at every level

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while promoting the importance of unity across the 108th Training Command (IET) formation at a time when “relevance” is the topic of discussion among senior leaders – military and civilian. On behalf of the Soldiers, leaders, and civilians of the 95th Training Division (IET) — ma’am — welcome to a great organization and the opportunity to work with you at this time in the history of this division, the 108th Training Command (IET), and the Army Reserve. In closing, I am always excited about serving with the dedicated Soldiers and warriors of the 95th Training Division (IET) and the opportunity to serve with great Americans. Remember — this division remains positioned to overcome and adapt at a time when the global community continues to foster distrust, hate, violence, and manipulation around the world. The Victory Division has an extensive history of taking on overwhelming challenges with utmost distinction in some of America’s darkest days in order to remain a viable, sovereign nation-state with peaceful intent. To all — meet you on the objective — charlie mike — and Godspeed.


THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013 • 35

From the Command Chief Warrant Officer... The Army Profession and Ethics — A Call to Arms

By Chief Warrant Officer Karen Kay

Command Chief Warrant Officer 108th Training Command (IET)

Recent headlines relating to the repugnant behavior of a few has brought discredit to our profession and has broken the sacred trust not only with our Soldiers; but also, with the American people.We must mobilize to eradicate the bad seed that has infiltrated our ranks.This is a call to arms. According to Merriam Webster the political definition for a call to arms is “a summons, invitation, or appeal to undertake a particular course of action.”This call to arms is broader than that definition.This call is for a cultural change within our ranks, a

change in our internal operational environment, and a personal calibration of the Army’s certification criteria of competence, character, and commitment. We must begin with a muster around the five essential characteristics of the Army Profession and the seven Army Values.ADRP 1,The United Sates Army Profession, dated June 2013 states,“The way ahead is clear – the Army will only be and perform as a military profession when five essential characteristics are present in its culture, in its professionals and their units, and in its external relationships.”These five characteristics are: trust, military expertise, honorable service, esprit de corps, and stewardship of our profession.” Nearly two decades ago, I participated in my first PT formation with a training command unit. I distinctly remember because it was my first time in a drill sergeant formation since BCT. I also remember because it was the first tme I heard the following discipline.The drill sergeant PT NCOIC stated the exercise and then said,“Follow me” and the formation responded,“Lead the way.” To me, this capsulated a profound, simple truth in leadership: (1) state the intent, (2) communicate the standard, and (3) set the example. Studies have shown that only 7% of communication consists of the spoken word.The rest of what is “heard” is through the actions of the speaker.To say that sexual assault and sexual harassment are incompatible with our Soldier/Warrior ethos

and our profession is only stating the intent and accomplishes only 7% of the work required to influence an effective, lasting cultural change. Communicating the standard is the “follow me” of our actions — both on and off duty.We are Soldiers 24/7. The work that remains must be accomplished through a personal calibration of the C3 criteria. Let me illustrate this concept. In the maintenance arena, there is a category of tools referred to as Test, Measurement, and Diagnostic Equipment (TMDE).The term ‘calibration’ refers to both the instrument and the process.The instrument is especially designed to be capable of measurements that are within engineering tolerance when used within the stated environment over some reasonable period of time. Having a design with these characteristics increases the likelihood of the actual measuring instruments performing as expected.The calibration process is a comparison between the measurement of the known magnitude of the calibration tool and the measurement made in as similar a way as possible to a second device.The known measurement of the calibration tool is the standard.The Army certification criterion — compe-

tence, character, commitment — is our TMDE! It is our standard. It is our test. It is our measure.And it’s time for calibration.Tools and equip-

I challenge you, as a Soldier, to respond to a call to arms to establish yourself and your identity with the Army Profession and Ethics. ment that are not maintained within calibration intervals are ineffective, rendered useless. Major General Purser states that a fourth attribute can be added to the Army Certification Criterion – compassion.That would give us four “Cs”: competence, character, commitment and compassion. Purser says,“When we talk about subjects like SHARP and suicides, if we don’t have it, training becomes little more than power point drills.” Our Soldiers, our comrades, the American people expect us to “lead the way.” I challenge you, as a Soldier, to respond to a call to arms to establish yourself and your identity with the Army Profession and Ethics. For more information about America’s Army Our Profession visit the Center for Army Profession and Ethics at http://CAPE.army.mil.


36 • THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013

Army Reserve presents ACOE Awards By Lt. Col. Christopher Black 108th Training Command (IET), Public Affairs

Maj. Gen. Glenn Lesniak, deputy commanding general, U.S. Army Reserve Command assisted by Mr. Tad Davis, command executive officer, U.S. Army Reserve Command presented the Army Reserve overall winner award to Maj. Gen. Karen Ledoux, commanding general, 88th Regional Support Command (RSC); Brig. Gen. Alton Berry, deputy commanding general, 88th RSC and Command Sgt. Maj. Michael Koszuta, command sergeant major, 88th RSC. Photo by Lt. Col. Christopher Black, 108th Training Command (IET), Public Affairs

ARLINGTON, Va. — The Army Communities of Excellence Award Ceremony (ACOE) for Army National Guard and the U.S.Army Reserve was conducted at the Headquarters, National Guard Bureau to recognize exceptional achievement of National Guard and Army Reserve units, May 30.The 88th Regional Support Command and the 108th Training Command (IET) were recognized for exceptional achievement and received top honors for the Army Reserve.Thirty-six Army National Guard units from across the U.S. were recognized with the Georgia National Guard receiving top honors for the Army National Guard program. The ACOE Program was created in 1988 to promote and recognize effective management systems and overall performance improvement within the Army.This program ties in well with the Army’s commitment to continuous process improvement through the Lean Six Sigma program. The competition uses the Malcolm Baldrige criteria to measure performance through written and site as-

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Maj. Gen. Glenn Lesniak, deputy commanding general, U.S. Army Reserve Command assisted by Mr. Tad Davis, command executive officer, U.S. Army Reserve Command presented the runner up award to Brig. Gen. Allan Elliott, deputy commanding general, 108th Training Command (IET) accompanied by Col. Laura Sievert, assistant commander, strategic initiatives, Lt. Col. Walter Witmer, deputy, strategic initiatives, and Lt. Col. Mathew Holbert, ACOE program manager, strategic initiatives. Photo by Lt. Col. Christopher Black, 108th Training Command (IET), Public Affairs

The Army National Guard Communities of Excellence program recognized units from 36 states based on capabilities and scope of the mission.

sessment of top organizations that competed in 2013. Maj. Gen.Walter Fountain, acting deputy director,Army National Guard welcomed all awardees and honored guests and recognized that “every organization that participated in the process were winners. Unfortunately, we are only able to recognize a few organizations but every unit that participated in the competition is deserving.” The Army National Guard Communities of Excellence program recognized units from 36 states based on capabilities and scope of the mission. The Georgia Army National Guard took overall honors for the Army National Guard program. Fountain presented the award to Mr. Joe Jarrard, assistant adjutant general, Georgia National Guard who was accompanied by numerous senior staff members responsible for the Georgia National Guard’s outstanding effort in the program and winning submission.

Maj. Gen. Glenn Lesniak, deputy commanding general, U.S. Army Reserve Command and Mr.Tad Davis, command executive officer, U.S.

Army Reserve Command presented awards to the 88th Regional Support Command and the 108th Training Command (IET). Maj. Gen. Karen Ledoux, commanding general, 88th Regional Support Command accepted the award for the 88th Regional Support Command and Brig. Gen. Allan Elliott, deputy commanding general, 108th Training Command (IET) received the award for the 108th Training Command on behalf of Maj. Gen Robert Stall, the commanding general. “The 88th Regional Support Command (RSC) and 108th Training Command are no strangers to the process of improvement and innovation,” stated Lesniak.“Both units continually demonstrate excellence in process management and have been winners and runner-ups in this competition over the years.The 88th RSC provides exceptional base-operations support to Army Reserve Soldiers, civilians, Families, units and facilities. The 108th Training Command has always achieved high standards as the primary provider of drill sergeants for the Army Reserve.” The overall winner, 88th RSC and the runner-up, 108th Training Command (IET) will receive a monetary award of $400,000 and $200,000, respectively, for funding organizational programs that enhance program management, process improvement and benefits their commands as a whole.

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38 • THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013

Tornado Destroys Soldier’s Home

Master Sgt. Adam C. Rudy’s son and a friend walk toward the Rudy family home shortly after an EF5 tornado destroyed it. The family had been in the house minutes before the storm but left to find shelter. Photo by Roxanne Rudy

Story by Maj. Jennifer K. Mack 95th Training Division (IET) Public Affairs

NORMAN, Okla. — Imagine sitting in your vehicle staring into your rearview mirror watching a mile wide tornado barreling down on your neighborhood. The heart hopes it can’t be true, but the mind knows otherwise. Master Sgt. (Ret.) Adam C. Rudy doesn’t have to imagine. He knows the feeling firsthand. Rudy lives in Moore, Okla. and on May 20, when he received word a tornado was eminent, he got in his truck and left his home to find shelter. With about an eight minute lead, Rudy

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made it barely five miles before he saw the reflection of the twister mowing down neighborhoods in its path. After the storm passed, Rudy drove back toward his community to see for himself what kind of devastation the EF5 tornado had left in its wake. As he neared the location he said he remembered thinking,“I knew it [his house] was gone, but I was still hoping it wasn’t.” The home Rudy had lived in since 1989 was now just a pile of rubble. Memories and mementos scattered among the broken boards and shattered windows. His family’s possessions ripped away. Despite the physical destruction, Rudy and his family were fortunate. Their entire family escaped unharmed and for that they could be grateful. The weeks following the tornado have been tough. The family has been digging through the ruins to salvage as much as possible. Emotions fluctuate. Rudy said some days he’s fine and other days the sadness creeps in. The second day of sifting was a happy one when one of their two missing cats appeared. The family figured it had been temporarily pinned by debris. Sadly, the other cat was never found. Another uplifting moment came when a small ring box was found at the bottom of the crumpled home. Inside was Rudy’s wife, Rox-


THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013 • 39 anne’s original wedding ring which she had been keeping in the box with her mother’s wedding band. Roxanne was elated because she said the rings were what she most wanted to recover. For Rudy, these months were supposed to be a new journey. He retired from the 3/378th, 1st Brigade, 95th Training Division (IET) in December 2012 after a 30 year career that included time in the active and reserve components. He would now have his weekends free. Never could Rudy have known that a destructive storm would veer into his path. Those free weekends are now devoted to cleaning up and rebuilding his life. Despite this twist of fate, Rudy continues to find reasons to be inspired. He said he has been overwhelmed by the outpouring of support.

How You Can Help If you would like to find out ways you can help, visit https:// moore.recovers.org/.

The 95th originally presented the above award to Master Sgt. Adam C. Rudy in 2005 for his work with the Drill Sergeant School. Following the May 20 tornado in Moore, Okla. a woman found the memento in a pile of rubble nearly a half mile from Rudy’s home. This photo circulated through social media until Rudy was tracked down so that it could be returned to him. Rudy said the award had been stored in a plastic footlocker in his garage prior to the storm. Photo courtesy www.okcfox.com

98th Soldier Raises Money For 95th Soldier By Maj. Jennifer K. Mack

95th Training Division (IET) Public Affairs

Staff Sgt. Alfred Rocha, 1/378th, 3d Brigade, 98th Training Division (IET) watched the news coverage of the tornado that ripped through Moore, Okla. on May 20. He had previously served in the 95th and had friends in Oklahoma. He was moved to help. He devised a plan to raise money by donating his services as a personal trainer. Rocha sold $5 tickets to members of his wife’s gym in Palmyra, Va. for a chance to win. When Rocha called to check on his fellow comrades, he learned from 1st Sgt. Bryant Potts, 3/378th, 1st Brigade, 95th Training Division (IET) that Master Sgt. (Ret.) Adam C. Rudy, who had retired from the 3/378th in December, had lost his home in the twister. Rocha decided the money raised would be given directly to Rudy. Rocha, who has never met Rudy, was honored to assist Rudy in some way because he said he “appreciates all Soldiers for their service.” The raffle raised $175. Rocha and his wife generously matched the monies raised and sent a check for $350 to the unit to be presented to Rudy. Rocha arranged for Rudy to draw the winning ticket. Although Rudy said it was difficult to accept money, he was moved by the kindness of a stranger and was very grateful to Rocha and all those who donated.

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A view of Master Sgt. Adam C. Rudy’s street days after an EF5 tornado touched down leveling the entire neighborhood. The Rudy family has a long road to recovery, but they remain inspired by the support they have received from friends and total strangers. Photo by Pam Dennis

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40 • THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013

Warrant Officer Spotlight...

Warrant Officer Milestones

Brian Hightower

Congratulations to the newly selected Warrant Officer Candidate, Brian Hightower. Warrant Officer Candidate Hightower was selected for the Warrant Officer Candidate (WOC) Program by the WOC Board conducted on 23 July 2013. Warrant Officer Candidate Hightower will transition into the warrant officer ranks as a 920A, Property Accounting Technician, under the 95th Div, 2nd Bde, 1st Bn, 414th REGT, in Eugene, Oregon. WOC Hightower served in the USMC (active) from 1988 through 1992 as a TOW Gunner and as a Small Boat Coxswain. After a 16-year break in service, he joined the Washington National Guard then transferred to the Army Reserve in October 2009. He has served in the Army Reserve for nearly four years as a Unit Supply Specialist and Supply Sergeant. Welcome back to Chief Warrant Officer 2 Dan Targett. Chief Warrant Officer 2 Target returned from a ninemonth deployment to KAF, Afghanistan, where he served as a 915A, Automotive Maintenance Officer, with the 993rd Transportation Company originating from, Palatka, Fla. Congratulations to Warrant Officer Hannah Hill and Warrant Officer Benjean Lara on their graduation from the AG Warrant Officer

Warrant Officer Hannah Hill

Chief Warrant Officer 2 Dan Targett

Warrant Officer Benjean Lara

Pictured right is Barbara Jenkins who was recently promoted to the rank of Chief Warrant Officer 4.

Basic Course. Additionally, Warrant Officer Hill was recognized with an Excellence in Physical Fitness Leadership Award and Warrant Officer Lara was recognized by receiving the

Army Physical Fitness Badge. Congratulations to Barbara Jenkins who was recently promoted to the rank of Chief Warrant Officer 4. Chief Warrant Officer 4 Jenkins was “pinned”

by her daughters in a ceremony at the headquarters in Charlotte. Chief Warrant Officer 4 Jenkins is a 270A, Legal Administrator, in the JAG section at the 108th Training Command (IET).


THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013 • 41

Vehicle Safety By Raymond F. Chandler, III Sergeant Major of the Army

It’s summer and historically that means the number of vehicle fatalities, especially those occurring off duty, statistically will increase. Although the total numbers are down this year, the Army Combat Readiness/Safety Center is reporting disturbing trends. My concerns are that 45% of the Army’s fatal motorcycle accidents are indiscipline-based, that NCOs comprise a majority of those fatalities, and that ATV fatalities are rising.These are all NCO leader issues. As of 7 July 2013, the Army has had 22 motorcycle Soldier fatalities this fiscal year. As previously noted, nearly half of those accidents were indiscipline-based and, of these, 68% occurred between Friday and Sunday. Most troubling to me, however, is the fact that 14 of the 22 motorcycle fatalities involved Soldiers in the ranks of E5 to E7. As Senior NCOs, we are the standard-bearers in our units. We look out for our Soldiers and their Families. We enforce regulations to ensure success and safety. But, we also ensure every NCO has someone to check his or her compliance with these responsibilities.

Statistics that show over 60% of motorcycle fatalities are NCOs mean the messages we deliver are not effectively reaching those NCOs who directly influence junior enlisted Soldiers.This is a poor example for them to follow. To date this fiscal year, we also have experienced five ATV fatalities, compared to none in FY12 and FY11.Two of these were on-duty accidents. One incident was a rollover during a training exercise, but the second was a staff sergeant not wearing an appropriate safety helmet – another example of indiscipline. The NCO Creed states,“My two basic responsibilities will always be uppermost in my mind - - accomplishment of my mission and the welfare of my Soldiers.”We must teach our Soldiers, no matter what their rank, to do the right thing and to appropriately consider comprehensive risk management practices. By doing this, we mitigate safety concerns with activities both on and off duty. As an NCO and leader, I expect you to set, enforce, and abide by these standards. I also expect that you will ask a commander, battle buddy or peer to keep you honest in all these efforts. Remember, NCOs are the Backbone of the Army.

Chaplains Corner...

Spend Time Wisely By Chaplain (COL) Philip Chandler Command Chaplain, 95th Training Division (IET)

Adapted from a devotion by Rev. Mark Jervis, Pastor, First Baptist Church Gillette, WY “Teach us to number our days aright, that we may gain a heart of wisdom.” Psalm 90:12 NIV This summer is nearly over and I could do this devotional on the ever popular topic,“What I did this summer.” However, I also realize most of you would likely get bored. Interestingly, most of my big goals for this summer are still incomplete. In fact, several are not even started. The things I wanted to accomplish during this summer, met only with limited success. And like so many others with whom I’ve talked,“I wonder where the days went.” Time is such a relative concept. We talk of it in terms that imply that it varies,“Where has

time gone?”“My, hasn’t time just flown by?” or “I sure wish this last half hour of work would hurry up and pass!” But, we know that time is measured and marked by consistent intervals, it continues on at the same pace, one nanosecond at a time. So, how do we get the most from the time we have? I believe that a Godly approach to the question leads to an answer that is quite simple, yet very challenging.The answer I would suggest is to become very quality time conscience. Yes, it is more difficult than it sounds, but it has a solid foundation.“Teach us to number our days aright, that we may gain a heart of wisdom.” (Psalm 90:12 NIV) The Psalmist understood the value of using our time wisely, of making the most of the time that we are all allotted. I am sorry to say that not all of my time has been spent as quality time during this summer.

Perhaps you struggled with that as well. In his letter to the church in Ephesus, Paul encourages them with a statement that can both challenge us and give us a goal in the use of our time.“Be very careful how you live – not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil.” (Ephesians 5:15 & 16 NIV) If taken to heart, this will come out different for each of us. Some of us need to become more efficient in the use

of our time. Others may need to slow down. As a pastor friend stated one time,“God does not need your exhaustion to get His work done.” Let me both encourage and challenge you to make the most of every moment God has given you. Prayer: Gracious Lord, we confess that we don’t always make the most of the time you have given us. May we commit each day to strive to make the most of our time for your honor and glory. Amen

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42 • THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013

Do you want to be a Unit Public Affairs Representative? As the 108th Training Command (IET) continues to grow, it will be difficult for the Public Affairs Staff to visit each brigade, battalion and company to cover news events. Public Affairs is the responsibility of commanders and Soldiers alike. The PAO is kicking off the Unit

Public Affairs Program (UPAR), which will allow any Soldier to be the additional eyes and ears for your unit and the PAO. By volunteering you will assume the duties of UPAR as an additional duty. Do you enjoy taking pictures? Do you enjoy writing? As a Unit

Public Affairs Representative (UPAR) you will take pictures of newsworthy events and submit them along with stories to your Division Public Affairs Officer for review and possible submission in The Griffon, as well as your division web site.

Are You?

division Public Affairs Officer for additional info: 9 5th Training Division (IET) Public Affairs Officer – Maj. Jennifer Mack jennifer.k.mack3.mil@mail.mil 9 8th Training Division (IET) Public Affairs Officer – Vacant 1 04th Training Division (IET) Public Affairs Officer – Maj. Alex Johnson alex.l.johnson.mil@mail.mil

• Familiar with your organization • Independent & dependable • Able to communicate well

Or contact:

Are you able to? • Publicize unit participation in community projects or activities. • Serve as the public affairs point of contact for your unit. • Maintain contact with the 108th Training Command (IET) Public Affairs Office Soldiers should contact their

 rs. Deborah Williams at M deborah.p.williams8.mil@mail.mil 108th Training Command (IET) Public Affairs NCOIC L t. Col. Chris Black at Christopher.c.black2.mil@mail.mil, 108th Training Command (IET) Public Affairs Officer  hone 704-227-2820 ext. 4235 P for more information.

Army Suicide Prevention Month September 2013 is the Department of the Army (DA) Suicide Prevention Month. The theme is “Shoulder to Shoulder - Standing Ready and Resilient.”The Ready and Resilient Campaign is the latest initiative from Army leaders to encourage and promote physical, moral and mental fitness. Numerous efforts and programs are integrated within the campaign to improve the readiness and resilience

of Army Soldiers, DA Civilians, and Family members. DA hopes to build upon the physical, emotional and psychological resilience that allows us to deal with the rigors and challenges of a demanding profession by utilizing a more holistic, collaborative and coherent approach. A healthy body and mind are essential to individual and unit readiness. The combination of emotion-

al, mental, and physical skills can generate greater success in managing work and home life and in overcoming adversity. Efforts to build individual resilience must be daily and enduring. Therefore, an effort to prevent suicide and empower Soldiers, Civilian employees, and Families is paramount. In an effort to make a difference, please check out the following clip at www.blueribbonmovie.com and

let three people in your life (battle buddies, family, friends, colleagues, i.e., people you cross paths with routinely) know that they make a difference to you. Small seeds of hope or a sense of belonging can grow to form the threads that sustain us through tough times as demonstrated in the clip. Remember you make a difference ­— Pass it on!

Crisis Intervention and Other Resources • Emergency - 911 • Military Crisis Line —1-800-273-TALK (8255) - Press 1 • National Suicide Prevention Lifeline — 800-273-TALK (8255) • Military One Source — 1-800-342-9647 • The Defense Center of Excellence (DCoE) — 866-966-1020 • Wounded Soldier and Family Hotline — 800-984-8523

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THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013 • 43

G1 Payment of Additional Training Assemblies (ATAs) for Electronic Based Distribution Learning (EBDL) Courses Soldiers can now receive compensation for some distance learning (DL) courses they are required to take. Army Directive 2010-06 authorized compensation for the successful completion of electronic based distributed learning (EBDL) coursework.The Army Reserve has allocated ATA funds for eligible EBDL courses. Here is who is eligible, how to request compensation and how to pay Soldiers that earn compensation. Who is eligible and how do I apply for EBDL? Soldiers in all grades are now eligible for this compensation. Commanders must direct, in writing, Soldiers to complete EBDL training, citing availability of funds. The courses must attain unit readiness and be listed on the approved course list in AR Pay Message 1207. Soldiers must complete the course before receiving payment. Payment for partial completion is NOT authorized. What courses can be compensated? First, the course must directly apply to the eligible grade of Soldiers listed above.The course must also be listed on the approved list of courses published in AR Pay Message 12-07. See your unit for the list of courses. In general, DL portions of MOS producing courses and DL portions of Professional Military Education (PME) courses are eligible for compensation.There have been two additions to the approved course list.The DL portions for Warrant Officer MOS and PME were originally omitted from the approved this.Those are also eligible for compensation.The Supervisor Development Course has also been added, but the grade of the supervisor must meet the grade requirements listed above. How much is a Soldier compensated? Soldiers will be compensated 1 ATA for every 8 hours of completed EBDL coursework but may not receive payment for more than 12 ATAs during the fiscal year (1 Oct - 30 Sep). RMAs cannot be used to compensate Soldiers for coursework if a Soldier uses all 12 ATAs during the fiscal year. Soldiers must attach the commander’s memo authorizing the course and a DA Form 87, certificate of completion, or ATRRS printout showing course completion to a DA Form 1380 and submit it to their unit administrators to receive compensation. How does a Soldier receive compensation? Unit administrators will pay ATAs using ADARS in the RM module of RLAS as drill type 41. Input the ATA

date using the date of course completion. Use the dates immediately prior to the course completion date that do not conflict with other paid military duty if the Soldier earns multiple ATAs for completion of an approved course. What location do I have to be at to complete my DL courses? Soldiers may complete Commander approved EBDL course work at any location, including but not limited to US Army Reserve Centers, Digital Training Facilities, other public computer use facilities, and their residence.The effective date of this policy was 1 October 2012. Compensation for courses completed prior to 1 Oct 12 is not authorized.

Command Teams and the Army Reserve as we spent more time getting rid of unqualified Soldiers than we did developing those who would make good drill sergeants. That number had to change, so the G-1 team got involved.The G-1 engaged the USARC REQUEST team to ensure polices were developed that were beneficial to the recruiting of Drill Sergeant Candidates through the REQUEST system. We then visited 25 Reserve Component Career Counselor (RCCC) offices across the country at active duty installations to build relationships and rapport with that community knowing that establishing relationships with the recruiting community was critical to our success.

Soldier’s

Gold Mine Nuggets to keep you informed

Contact your unit administrator if you have any questions.

G1 Recruiting Drill Sergeant Candidates As a command, this is a top priority to fill our ranks.There are many involved in this effort, to include the 108th Training Command G-1. Many have come to believe that the G-1 recruiting team’s focus is to recruit quantity over quality, but that is not the case.There is a scene in the Lord of the Rings movie where Gandalf stands on a rock bridge and blocks the passage of a Balrog, a fierce creature made of fire. Gandalf stands on the rock bridge, blocks the Balrog from passing and hits his staff on the rock bridge declaring,“You shall not pass!”That is the G-1 Staff’s posture in the recruiting process. Our process is designed to review Soldiers and their records before they are assigned to ensure you receive QUALITY DSCs. Quantity has never been the goal. Our process is designed to say NO to those who are not qualified, and let those pass through that are good DSCs. Prior to the G-1 getting involved in the recruiting process, 78% of all Soldiers assigned to drill sergeant positions in the command washed out of the program.That 78% was an astronomical number that created a huge burden on all FTS staff,

We then developed an extensive interview process where interested Soldiers are asked an extensive set of questions by using the following outline of Qualifications and Disqualifications: Qualifications • Be Physically Fit - Maximum Profile Guide is 111221 - Meet HT/WT standard IAW AR 600-9 - Able to pass the APFT upon arrival • 40+ years old must have medical clearance • Have no record of emotional instability • Have no speech impediment • High school graduate or GED • Minimum GT score of 100, Waivable to 90 • Warrior Leader Course (WLC) grad • Display good military bearing • Minimum of 4 years time in service • E-4/CPLs are authorized to attend DSS • ALL DSCs will have a thorough background screening prior to reporting to DSS Disqualifications • Court-martial convictions • Disciplinary action, to include: - Letters of reprimand - AWOL within last 5 yrs • Sexual harassment/assault • Assault and/or spouse or child abuse

• Incest, bestiality, adultery, sexual activity with subordinate Soldiers, or fraternization • Extremist organizations or activities • Driving under the influence within last 5 years • Any drug offense • Larceny/theft • A traffic violation with six points or more • Bankruptcy or major credit issues Note: Some offenses may be waived depending on the severity and when the offense took place. The G-1 recruiting team has recruited 230 candidates since 1 October 2012 and here is a breakdown of what type of Soldier has been recruited by Category. Current FY 13 as of 2013 0809

TC Status Gains % CAT 1 10 4% CAT 2 58 25% CAT 3 65 28% CAT 4 25 11% ENROLLED 8 3% SCHOOL 13 6% GRAD 33 14% REMOVED 18 8% TOTAL 230 The high number of Category 3 Soldiers is because of the type of Soldier being recruited who are coming off active duty. Many are E4s that require the Warrior Leader Course, which categorizes them as a Cat 3 Soldier. So, are we achieving one of our primary goals? Yes we are. We were attempting to influence the 78% attrition rate that was occurring. Based upon current data, only 20% of those directly recruited by the G-1 have washed out of the program. Since this data is still new and developing, it remains to be seen how many actually become drill sergeants and time will tell that story. There is a larger number of Soldiers being transferred into the command from multiple sources that the G-1 recruiting team has not had any contact with. Here are those numbers: Current FY 13 as of 2013 0809

Div Status Gains % CAT 1 19 4% CAT 2 144 28% CAT 3 65 12% CAT 4 105 20% ENROLLED 14 3% SCHOOL 22 4% GRAD 103 19% REMOVED 59 11% TOTAL 531 As you can see, this population has a lot of Category 4 Soldiers in it.These Soldiers are coming from a number of sources but through two main efforts: 1) unit recruiting efforts, 2) transfers because of the Chief, Army Reserve manning strategy. Units are fully engaged in the


44 • THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013 recruiting process, but there is no way to determine the quality of these candidates at the Training Command level. We believe the units know what they are looking for and are recruiting quality Soldiers to fill their ranks. The last dynamic that is a major contributing factor is the Chief, Army Reserve (CAR) Manning Strategy that was published on 8 March 2013. It that policy, the CAR directed commanders to” set aside ‘one Soldier – one position’ manning policies and to halt the practice of requiring interviews prior to assignment.” USARC had to adopt this policy because it’s end strength is going down and there is a threat of losing structure because it cannot be filled. The 108th Training Command G-1 recruiting team addressed the issue of not interviewing Soldiers with the USARC staff and received an exception to policy so we as a command can continue interviewing

potential drill sergeant candidates. Unfortunately, this only applies to drill sergeant positions in the REQUEST System. It does not apply to the support positions in the rest of a battalion’s structure. So, the personnel and supply positions on a unit’s Unit Manning Roster (UMR) are subject to the CAR’s aggressive manning strategy. One last change that has occurred is that of being able to double slot drill sergeant positions that were occupied by another Soldier. Vacancies on the UMR had been blocked in AVE/REQUEST based on overstrength at the battalion level. Moving forward, all SQI3X positions will be available for accessions so long as they are vacant on the UMR or are slotted with only one Soldier.This will eliminate any barrier from us being able to recruit from the IRR, Prior Service and Active Component. It will also allow units to double slot all its drill sergeant positions. Assignments in these po-

sitions are still subject to an interview process. The 108th Training Command is currently at 68% drill sergeant strength. Recruiting is an ‘all hands on deck’ necessity. Hopefully, this article clarifies the efforts of the G-1 in its recruiting efforts and provides some understanding into larger issues faced by the USAR force.

G-4 It is important that we restate the recent “Property Accountability” message from the VCSA dated 25 April 2013. Why is Property Accountability important to our Army? The long period of conflict followed by an unprecedented level of modernization, and property churn as we cycled forces into and out of combat has weakened our Command Supply Discipline Program (CSDP). We must all be responsible

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stewards of the resources entrusted to our care in order to remain the decisive land force in the world. We must take care of every piece of equipment. Leaders Expectations: Stewardship – Property Accountability is leader responsibility and it’s about combat readiness. All leaders must ensure subordinate leaders are being evaluated on how well they maintain and account for their property.This should be part of their leader development plans and a performance objective on their support form. The United States Army Africa (Southern European Task Force (SETAF)) G4, G8, and the Headquarters and Headquarters Battalion S4 conducted Operation Guardian Logistics (OGL) from 13-17 May 2013. The two phased operation targeted all command Hand Receipt (HRH) and Government Purchase Card (GPC) holders. Phase one was a weeklong audit of all GPC holders to ensure processes and procedures were in place to track and account for GPC purchases. Phase two consisted of a one-day seminar tailored to review proper hand receipt procedures, to reinforce excess turn-in accountability, and emphasize the necessity for linking GPC purchases with property accountability. All GPC/HRH holders received a smart book as a reference Guide to assist them in their daily duties. Since 2011 the command has taken a very aggressive approach to property accountability focusing on GPC and Field Ordering Officer (FOO) processes. All GPC requests are validated by the supply room to determine availability and reinforce use of the standard military order process. Great success has been achieved through internal reviews, oversight management, the Command Supply Discipline Program (CSDP) and training programs. OGL was designed to reduce friction points which were identified during internal reviews of our current business practices. Our approach focused on two key areas: command emphasis - a collective effort between our three keystakeholders (RCO, G8, and G4) to monitor the GPC program; Standing Operating Procedures and policy letters for implementation guidance; FOO management for down range units; introduction of the Wide Area Work Flow process at the property book level; and monthly stakeholder meetings. GPC card accounts were reduced throughout the command to simplify management responsibilities, property accountability management training programs were instituted, along with semi-annual audits for unit and supply room account management. Improvements throughout the command have resulted from collaborative efforts by the commanders, battalion level Property Book Officers/S4 staff inspections, and reinforcement of the


THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013 • 45 CSDP. OGL was our opportunity to reiterate the importance of these programs and processes to the collective audience of HRHs and GPC card holders as we continuously strive to improve our logistics posture. Found on Installation Found on Installation (FOI) property is a measurable part of the Army’s Campaign on Property Accountability (CoPA). Recent CoPA trend analysis indicates that Property Book Officers (PBOs) might be incorrectly posting assets in PBUSE using the FOI transaction. When receiving property that is lacking proper receipt documentation, the assumed method of bringing the property to record is using an FOI. While FOI is the most expedient, it should not be the first course of action. Assets that are procured through Government Purchase Card should not be brought to record using an FOI.These items should be brought to record by using a Department of Defense Form 250 and Type Transaction Code (TTC) “LPR” (local purchase, not GPC) or “GPC” (Government Purchase Card). Using these TTCs will help to reduce the number of FOIs incorrectly reported and make it easier to sort through the transactions when queried. When an incorrect Lateral Transfer is rendered for the transfer of property, do not increase the on hand quantity using an FOI. Make every attempt to have the transfer documentation corrected, involving the local and Army Command S-4 and G-4 staff, if need be. Increasing the quantities by using an FOI often means the PBO has to enter a false serial number to avoid duplication. This practice works against our ability to account for and manage our serially tracked assets and makes it appear that we own more equipment than we actually have on hand. Due diligence should be exercised and every attempt made to locate the original transfer document, Materiel Release Order, or research for previous Financial Liability Investigation for Property Loss activity in order to accurately capture the gain to the property book. There are resources available to help PBOs and supply sergeants conduct causative research. LOGSA has many tools at your disposal, including WebLIDB and the Unique Item Tracking database inquiry. PBUSE also has several research tools, such as: 1) The Search/View Serial Materiel Item tab (ASSET-5) will show the current PBUSE owner of a serialized asset. 2) The Inactive Activity Register Report is another good starting point for items that no longer appear in PBUSE, but were once owned by an Army entity. 3) The Ad Hoc Query menu offers more methods for searching serialized and non-serialized items, including the Closed Transactions query, Financial Liability Investigation for Property Loss Transactions query and Assets with Serial Num-

bers Report query. With a bit of investigation and due diligence, the FOI rates should drop and property accountability will improve. Financial Liability Investigation of Property Loss Intent Given the recent high volume of Financial Liability Investigation of Property Losses processed via the Department of Defense (DD) Form 200, we want to reach out to provide the reminders below to Commanders, Property Book Officers, Investigating Officers and FLIPL Approving and Appointing Authorities. First, remember, the DD Form 200 is used to document the circumstances surrounding the loss, damage, destruction or theft of Government property and serves as or supports a voucher for adjusting accountable records. It also documents any charges of financial liability assessed against individuals or entities, or provides for the relief from financial liability. All too often, units process the DD Form 200 simply to clear accountable records at Central Receiving Points, supply support activities, supply rooms or the property books without first conducting causative research for the loss. Once a loss is discovered, commanders should immediately conduct a thorough search for the missing equipment and research the loss to reestablish accountability.This means looking through your company or personal area and for the documentation processed for that piece of equipment. It is a commander’s responsibility to find equipment, not the Investigating Officer. When research reveals that the equipment listed on the DD Form 200 is on another unit’s property book, at a depot, or is visible anywhere in the wholesale system, the DD Form 200 is not the technique to remove the equipment from the property book. The PBO should contact the unit or depot that has this equipment and process the correct documentation such as a Department of the Army Form 3161 or a DD Form 1348-1. Following these steps will reduce the number of FLIPLs, the administrative burden from processing FLIPLs and more accurately portray the Army’s on hand property and property management processes.

G-6 How to Remove Adware and Spyware ( About.com) Adware and Spyware are types of Malware. Malware, short for malicious software, is software used or programmed by attackers to disrupt computer operation, gather sensitive information, or gain access to private computer systems. A more recent form of Malware is Scareware which alerts you that your computer has been infected and tries to sell you removal software. Another Scare ware tactic is to re-

port that you have visited illegal sites and to avoid prosecution you must send $200 - $300 dollars.They both appear very legitimate. How can you avoid and remove this nusiance? 1. Disconnect from the Internet — Close all open browser windows and applications (including email) and then disconnect your PC from the Internet. If you can access the back of the computer, the easiest thing to do is just remove the phone line or cable connecting the PC to the modem or router. If the back of the computer isn’t easily accessible, you can remove the ethernet cable or phone line from router or modem. 2.Try a Traditional Uninstall — A suprising number of applications labeled as adware and spyware have fully functioning uninstallers that will cleanly remove the program. Before moving on to more complex steps, start with the easiest route and check the Add/Remove Programs list in the Windows Control Panel. If the unwanted program is listed, simply highlight it and click the Remove button. In Windows Vista, the Add/Remove Programs feature is listed in the Control Panel as Programs and Features. After removing the adware or spyware via Control Panel’s Add/Remove Programs, reboot the computer. Make sure you reboot after the uninstall, even if you aren’t prompted to do so. 3. Scan Your Computer — After you’ve disconnected from the Internet, removed any adware or spyware listed in Add/Remove Programs and rebooted the computer. The next step is to run a full system scan using an up-to-date antivirus scanner. If your antivirus will allow it, run the scan in Safe Mode. If you don’t have antivirus installed, select from one of these top-rated antivirus scanners or from one of these free antivirus scanners. If prompted, allow the scanner to clean, quarantine, or delete as appropriate. 4. Using SmitFraudFix, MalwareBytes, and Other Tools — Much of today’s spyware is delivered via the Zlob family of Trojan downloaders. The free SmitFraudFix tool does a good job of removing many variants of Zlob-related adware and spyware. For the free download and usage instructions, see: SmitFraudFix Removes Zlob and Other Pests. MalwareBytes does a good job of removing scareware, rogue software that hijacks your computer and tries to scare you into purchasing “protection”. For the free download and usage instructions, visit: MalwareBytes’ Anti-Malware. 5. Get Clear Access to the Problem — While scanning the system in Safe Mode is good practice, it may not be enough to thwart some malware. If the adware or spyware persists despite the above efforts, you’ll need to get access to the drive without allowing the adware or spyware to load.The most effective means to get clean access to

the drive is to use a BartPE Bootable CD. Once you’ve booted to the BartPE CD, you can access the file manager, locate the installed antivirus and rescan the system. Or, locate the offending files and folders and manually delete them. 6. Undo the Residual Damage — After removing the active infestation, you’ll need to make sure the adware or spyware won’t simply reintegrate itself when the computer is reconnecting to the Internet. • Before reconnecting, reset your browser start and home pages. (See Resetting Internet Explorer Settings). • Ensure your HOSTS file hasn’t been hijacked. (See Protecting the HOSTS file) • Make sure undesirable websites haven’t been added to your Trusted Sites Zone. (See How to Check Your Trusted Sites List) 7. Preventing Adware and Spyware — To avoid future adware and spyware infections, be discriminating about what programs you install on your PC. If you see an offer for a program that seems too good to be true, research it first using your favorite search engine. Make sure your Web browser security is up to snuff, keep your system fully patched, and follow these adware and spyware prevention tips.

G7 Master Resiliency Trainer (MRT): Do you know that if you complete MRT you are authorized to be awarded an Additional Skill Identifier (ASI)? There are currently four (4) schools that teach this training: ATRRS School Code 145, 805V, 966 and 1023. All Soldiers that are MRT schooltrained need to request ASI (8R) through their S-1/ G-1 Personnel Sections/Directorates.The requirement is one (1) Soldier per company-size element.

IG I can remember the first time I heard the word counseling. My supervisor at the time told me one day that he needed to counsel me. I, being a brand new Soldier, thought that I was in trouble. As I stood there with a puzzled look on my face, he then stated that leaders, both officers and noncommissioned officers, have the responsibility to formally inform Soldiers under their charge how they are performing. He further explained that by providing feedback, positive or negative, counseling could provide Soldiers with a sense of self-worth. Most Soldiers, however, associate counseling as being negative, not realizing that leaders use counseling as a tool to develop Soldiers both professionally and personally. The Army has several categories of counseling. Leaders have a moral obligation to our Soldiers to provide coaching


46 • THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013 and mentoring through counseling (FM 6-22). We must understand how to apply these counseling types and techniques when events in a Soldier’s personal or professional life deem them necessary. Leaders have the responsibility to guide and outline areas where subordinates could improve by assisting them in developing a plan of action and setting realistic and achievable goals. One of the most effective parts of counseling, but often ignored, is following up. Most of us have heard the term,“What gets checked, gets done.” This is true for counseling. Following up and closing out the counseling session ensures that the desired result is achieved or the need to reassess/reshape the plan of action is done. The 108th Training Command

(IET) requires all leaders to counsel their subordinates verbally and in writing. Major General Purser, the new commanding general, stated that “Communication is Vital”.The Inspector General strongly believes that monthly and quarterly counseling will truly shape a Soldier’s future and help facilitate COMMUNICATION to Soldiers. The IG helps enforce the Army’s policy and the command’s guidance by ensuring Soldiers are strongly advised to complete proper counseling as directed by FM 6-22. Leaders need to ensure that the Soldiers they are responsible for supervising receive their initial counseling statement that outlines all personal and duty requirements, and counsels all of their junior Soldiers to let them know what is expected of them as Soldiers. Spot-checks of

subordinate leader books should be done to ensure that they, too, are counseling their Soldiers. If we, as leaders, show Soldiers what right looks like, they will pay it forward as they progress through the ranks and lead our Soldiers of tomorrow. Many leaders only counsel Soldiers when discipline action needs to occur. However, as the IG, we challenge leaders to break this attitude and counsel Soldiers when they have made significant career achievements.This action not only builds the Soldier’s self confidence, but it also lets the Soldier know that you, as his or her leader, care. Leaders today should remember that counseling, if done correctly, shapes our future leaders.

JAG Credit Repair Scams By Mrs. Jane Winand Clients frequently ask us about advertisements they have seen claiming to improve the consumer’s credit history. These services cost hundreds of dollars and appear to be a good idea. However, many of these services do not deliver on their promises and you are out the purchase price without the favorable results that you were seeking. The contracts for these services often obligate the credit helper to ”work with” the consumer in evaluating the consumer’s credit profile, to “assist” in removing any adverse or derogatory information pertaining to the consumer that is contained in the file of the consumer reporting agency, and to “educate” the consumer with regard to procedures that may be followed in order to establish or reestablish a satisfactory credit rating of the consumer. These contracts often state that the service guarantees the improvement of your “credit profile” or you will get your money back. Essentially the credit repair service consists of securing credit reports from the credit reporting service, filing of documents to correct any errors found, and filing of records of satisfactory payments with the credit service. The credit repair service decides whether your credit file has improved, so the chances of a refund are almost nonexistent. For a person with a bankruptcy on his or her record, the services cannot “repair” this at all, since a bankruptcy cannot be removed by such methods. You can do all these things for yourself at a lot less cost. The credit reporting agencies maintain files on each of us if we have established credit in the past. The agencies provide these credit records to lenders and merchants. Many of these credit reports contain errors. If the records are incorrect, and you are denied credit, there are certain steps you are entitled to take. You should get a free copy of your credit report and rebut the erroneous information in writing to the credit bureau. If the report is wrong, the credit bureau must remove the erroneous information. However, if the information is correct, be advised that the credit bureau is entitled to retain correct adverse information for up to seven years, and a bankruptcy entry will remain on your record for up to ten years. There is no method of removing a valid bankruptcy from a credit report. There are other questionable services offered to those who are poor credit risks. People who have been bankrupt or have poor credit ratings for other reasons are likely to be attracted by newspaper and magazine ads that promise “guaranteed loans or credit cards” or offer to “consoli-


THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013 • 47 date debt.” These are very likely to be misleading or deceptive. For example, a guaranteed loan usually requires a non-refundable fee of hundreds of dollars, and the loan may never be made. If it is not, chances of getting your money back are slim. The credit cards often turn out to be valid only to purchase merchandise from a catalog at high prices from the company offering the card. Loan consolidation advertisements offer a loan to pay off all the consumer’s debts, leaving him or her with one “easy” payment. These advertisements do not usually specify the interest rate to be paid, or explain hidden service charges which may actually reduce monthly payments to creditors. The loan often will cost more than the total of payments now being made. Mail-order businesses of this type are likely to be deceptive or fraudulent. You may obtain a free credit report by going on line to the Federal Trade Commission at www.ftc. gov and following the links to apply for the free credit report. It is important to periodically check your credit report to determine if there is erroneous information contained in it. You are entitled to one free credit report each year from each of the three major credit reporting agencies so you should request a report every four months and alternate between the three credit agencies. Should you have any questions concerning credit issues contact your command legal office for assistance.

Staff Judge Advocate Servicemembers Group Life Insurance (SGLI)

Servicemembers Group Life Insurance (SGLI). It is the low cost life insurance that pays up to $400,000 to whomever you designate. What many Soldiers do not know is that is not the only financial payment your loved ones will receive. There is also what is called the “death gratuity.” The death gratuity is a separate benefit from SGLI, and is not actually considered “insurance.” The death gratuity is a government benefit established by federal law, and until just a few years ago the amount of the death gratuity was limited to $12,000. In 2009, Congress recognized that this amount did not fully appreciate a Soldier’s sacrifice and increased the amount of the death gratuity to $100,000. In addition, this increased benefit was made retroactive to any deaths since October 7, 2001. One interesting aspect is that it is not necessary for a Soldier to die in combat for his or her beneficiary to receive the death gratuity.The one requirement for the death gratuity is that it will be paid if the Soldier dies while on active duty or while traveling to or from such duty. Until 2009, the primary beneficiary of the full amount was set by federal law. Soldiers had no control over who received the death gratuity and could not divide up the money amount between parties.The order of beneficiaries was first the spouse, if living; if no spouse, to children in equal shares; and if no spouse or children, to parents, then siblings, or any combination as designated by the deceased Soldier to receive his unpaid pay and allowances. In the past few years, Congress amended the law so that Soldiers have the option to add a second person as the primary beneficiary to receive a partial payment. This second person can be anyone, and the

Every Soldier is familiar with

Soldier can designate this second person to receive a chosen percentage in increments of 10 percent up to the full 100 percent of the death gratuity. Another advantage is this right of designation can be part of a coordinated estate plan. Assume the proverbial Private Snuffy wants 25 percent of the death gratuity to go to his minor child, but he does not want his child to have unlimited access to the money until the age of 30. Snuffy could visit with his Legal Assistant Office (JAG) to obtain a will with a testamentary trust establishing his child as the trust beneficiary to receive the money when the child turns 30. Snuffy then should go to MILPO and name the trustee established under his will as the 25 percent beneficiary of the death gratuity. Fifty percent of the death gratuity would be paid to the trustee to hold that amount (as well as any other assets Private Snuffy designated to be held in trust) until the child reaches 30. To name a second beneficiary, a Soldier should contact his or her personnel office.The information regarding the beneficiary and percentage that the beneficiary is to receive will be entered in the “Remarks” section of the Soldier’s DD Form 93.

Awards will be awarded to company/detachment through division levels and individuals (officer, NCO, enlisted and civilian) based on nominations received and boarded by the Command Safety Award Board. Command Excellence in Safety Awards board is tentatively scheduled for 18 Oct 2013. Subordinate unit commanders, safety managers, and ADSO’s will ensure nominations for 108th Training Command (IET) unit awards conform to criteria and documentation requirements outlined in USAR Reg. 385-2, Chapter 17-6, dated 1 June 2012. Nominations will be in memorandum format using the example shown in USAR Reg. 385-2, Chapter 17, Figure 17-2, and sent to the Command Safety Office, 108th Training Command (IET), 1330 Westover Street, Charlotte, NC 28205 or Email: christoppher.c.black2.civ@ mail.mil. Individual Excellence in Safety Award nominations will conform to criteria and documentation requirements outlined in DA Pam 385-10, para 6-3.c and 108th Training Command (IET) Safety SOP. Unit commanders or designated representatives will prepare a thru memorandum in accordance with guidance in DA Pam 385-2 to the Command Safety Office, 108th Training Command (IET), 1330 Westover Street, Charlotte, N.C. 28205. Awardees of command unit and individual level awards will be nominated for Army Reserve Excellence in Safety unit/individual awards NLT 30 Oct 2013. For assistance in the nomination process contact the Division Safety Manager or Chris Black at 704-342-5152 or email: christopher.c.black2.civ@ mai.mil.

Safety Units are invited to submit nominations for unit and individual Command Excellence in Safety Awards to the Command Safety Office NLT 17 Oct 2013. Ensure all data is pulled by 30 September 2013 to support nominations.

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48 • THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013

www.thegriffon108.com

Griffon Association awards fall 2013 scholarships One of the primary objectives, among many, is to award scholarships for post secondary education to deserving 108th Tng Command members, both military and civilian and/or their dependents to include grandchildren.This past summer, four $1000 scholarships were presented. Most of these were local to the Carolinas but please be advised that these scholarships are open to all units of the command from Hawaii to Puerto Rico and these scholarships will go wanting unless someone applies. Please note the application on this page for the fall 2014-2015 academic year with a deadline of 1 April, 2014. At the present time, it is planned to present a minimum or four additional $1000 scholarships to deserving members of the 108th Training Command.You do not have to be a member of the Association to apply. But; it would be greatly appreciated if you join for only $10 per year or $108 for a lifetime membership. You may be assured practically all of the funds collected, minus some small administrative expenses, will be returned to the command. In addition to scholarships, the 108th Griffon Association made a generous donation to the USO of N.C. for use at the facility located within the Charlotte, N.C. airport which is one of the largest facilities in the U.S. being a major hub for several airlines with many service people passing through daily. Another generous donation was made to the Iredell County, N.C. Veterans Council which supports present and past veterans with a variety of assistance. Again, this type of assistance is not limited to the command headquarters area but is open to all subordinate units throughout the U.S. Throughout the past year, direct aid was given to several soldiers who had sustained injuries which caused a monetary crisis once being returned to civilian status and before military benefits could begin. Having ones’ electric bill paid or a mortgage payment done until these benefits began cannot be measured lightly. The bottom line is that the 108th Griffon Association is designed for one purpose and that is to support our Soldiers in any way possible. A small group, consisting primarily of former 108th Soldiers of all ranks is presently functioning in this effort and again your assistance in the form of membership is sorely needed and appreciated. In addition to membership dues, monies are raised with a Griffon golf tournament which was held this year, 23 September, 2013. Please visit www.108thGriffonAssoc.com for more information.

Pictured (l-r) is Maj. (retired) Trina Tilque, mother of Chris Tilque. Chris is presented a $1000 scholarship by Tom Phlegar, representing the 108th Griffon Association. Chris is a student at Lenoir Rhyne College in Hickory, N.C. He just completed the first phase of the Marine Corp. OCS program and plans to make a career of the Marines upon graduation.

108th Griffon  Association,  Inc.  

SCHOLARSHIP APPLICATION                                                                                                                                         Fall  Semester  2014   Sponsor’s  Name  and  Rank________________________________________________________________   [sponsor  must  either  be  an  active  member  of  the  108th  Griffon  Association,  or  any  soldier  assigned  and   serving  with  the  108th  Training  Command  (IET)  and  subordinate  Commands]  

108th Association  Member  or  Serving  108th  Training  Command  (IET)  Soldier  (circle  one)                                                                                 Sponsor’s  Unit_________________________________________________________________________   Application  must  include  the  following  prepared  by  the  applicant:   • • • •

Cover letter  [include  all  that  apply:  a  list  of  extra  curricula/community/volunteer  activities,    work   experience  (hours  per  week),  and  military  experience  to  include  SROTC/JROTC]   Copy  of  transcripts  (high  school  if  entering  college  for  the  first  time  in  the  fall  semester  or   college  transcripts  if  currently/recently  enrolled)   Three  letters  of  recommendation  from  non-­‐family  members,  and     On  a  separate  sheet  please  answer  the  following  questions:     o What  are  your  educational  goals?   o How  will  achieving  these  goals  improve  your  life  and  improve  your  community?  

Applicant’s Name:  _____________________________________________________________________   [applicant  may  be  a  member  of  108th  Griffon  Association;  child  or  grandchild  of  a  108th  Griffon   Association  member;    soldier  of  the  108th  Training  Command  (IET)  to  include  subordinate  commands;  or   the  child  of  a  soldier  of  the  108th  Training  Command  (IET)  to  include  subordinate  Commands)   SSN  ___________________        Date  of  Birth___________________      Gender:  Male  or  Female  (circle  one)   Address  (No  P.O.  Boxes):_________________________________________________________________     Telephone____________________      EMAIL:  ____________________         High  School________________________________Graduation  Date  _________GPA(unweighted)______   Address______________________________________________________________________________   College(s)_____________________________________________Hours  Completed_________  GPA_____   Address(es)___________________________________________________________________________   Name  of  College  You  Will  Attend  Using  this  Scholarship________________________________________   [You  must  be  accepted/enrolled  -­‐-­‐  funds  will  be  issued  by  the  college  at  registration]   Location  (City,  State)____________________________________________________________________   Application  must  be  received  NLT    1  April  2014,  any  application  received  after  that  date  will  not  be   considered  regardless  of  reason.  MAIL  COMPLETE  APPLICATION  TO:  108th  Griffon  Association,  Inc.,   Scholarship  Committee,  C/O  Lin  Ingram,  1  Flagship  Cove,  Greensboro,  NC  27455  


SPECIAL SUPPLEMENT SECTION Resources for the Transitioning Soldier Visit www.thegriffon108.com/military-transitions.aspx

Blogs • Articles • Videos Career Advice Resumé Tips Career Fairs Hot Jobs For Military Top Military Employers Joining Forces Info

INSIDE THIS ISSUE MTR 50 Homeschool Options

58

Travel USA

60

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50 • THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013

www.thegriffon108.com

MILITARY TRANSITION RESOURCES

Informational interviews can be key in job hunt (This content is provided courtesy of USAA.) By Maj. Alan Brown

Military Officer Advisor Corporate Communications

Transitioning out of the Army after five years of active duty, I was

completely unprepared for how to land a civilian job commensurate with my military experience. Oh sure, I could put together a resume that outlined my Army duties and blast it to dozens of unknown companies for positions I knew nothing about. But of the 100 or more

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resumes I sent, I landed only one that you’re not asking for a job, but interview. are seeking information to help preMeanwhile, simply by talking pare for your transition out of the with people I knew, I got several in- military. If your meeting went well, formational interviews that helped your contacts won’t hesitate to rebuild my professional network fer you to other people they know and increase my knowledge of the and trust. Often, they’ll facilitate corporate world. Reflecting back an introduction for you, making it some 12 years later, this networking that much easier to set up another process became one of my most valuable “Hey, I’m transitioning lessons while transitioning out of the out of the military soon, military. The process is reand I was wondering if I markably simple, but takes perseverance could buy you a cup of cofand patience. Unlike fee sometime and ask you posting resumes with virtually no human some questions about your contact, face-to-face networking builds industry and your career.” relationships, which is the key to getting your foot in the door. The process starts with just one interview. As you finish up your cofpersonal contact in the corporate fees, be sure to get a business card world.This person could be anyso you can follow up with a handone you know or someone your written thank-you note.Taking time family or friends connect you with. to send a note will go a long way The call goes something like this: toward cementing the positive im“Hey, I’m transitioning out of the pressions you’ve made. military soon, and I was wondering Once you’re done — repeat.The if I could buy you a cup of coffee objective is to build as broad a netsometime and ask you some queswork as possible. If each meeting tions about your industry and your allows you to set up two or three career.”That’s it. Nothing threatenother meetings, your networking ing. No major investment on either web and your knowledge will exend.You simply give the person an pand rapidly. All it takes is one of opportunity to talk about himself your contacts to remember you or herself and get a free cup of cof- when a position becomes available. fee as a bonus. Note that asking for Of course, employers have varya job is not part of the pitch.You ing hiring processes, and you’ll still only want to get a foot in the door, probably need to forward a current learn what you can and develop a resume and go through the interrelationship. Directly asking for a view process. But getting to know job can put too much pressure on a company and its people before the interview and can be a roadyou interview may give you a comblock to your objectives. petitive advantage over numerous With coffees in hand, be preresumes they may receive for the pared to listen, ask thoughtful position. questions and take notes to help This process takes time and pademonstrate that, indeed, you are tience. Expect to be at it for several really listening.This is your chance months. But in contrast to the pasto learn about these people, their sive process of posting and emailjobs, the companies they work for ing resumes, attending informationand the overall industry they’re in. al interviews is active, ultimately How did they come to work at the exposing you to more people, pocompany? What positions have they sitions, companies and industries. held? What are their professional And coming from the fast-paced, goals? Ask advice on what skills are take-charge military atmosphere, required in their field and how you this active process to networking might craft your resume to pique will put you in greater control of their company’s interest. Of course, your future and give you an edge you’ll have a copy with you, and during your transition. this gives you a chance to share Maj. Alan Brown is an active-duty your experience and talk briefly Army public affairs officer, currently servabout your career. ing at USAA on a one-year Training-withAfter you’ve established a rapIndustry fellowship in Corporate Commuport and are close to wrapping up nications. This is the second in a series of the meeting, ask for two or three three blogs in which Brown shares lessons additional contacts from the same learned during his 2001 military-to-civilcompany or elsewhere. Reiterate ian transition.


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52 • THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013

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MILITARY TRANSITION RESOURCES

Rent or buy: What Military Families need to know This content is provided courtesy of USAA

brainer to buy a house at your new duty station. Not so fast. You’ve seen the headlines:The According to a chorus of housing housing market is beginning to staprofessionals, renting can be better bilize. Home prices in some cities for the budgets of military famiare increasing, and much of the U.S. lies who move often (nearly every housing market is in recovery. military family, in other words). If Buying a home is 45 percent you’re only going to be in a home cheaper than renting in all of for three to four years, you have a America’s 100 largest metro areas, strong possibility of finding youraccording to Trulia, a company that self underwater on your mortgage provides housing-market analysis. In the Seattle-Tacoma region (within a or simply unable to sell when your next PCS orders arrive. stone’s throw of Joint Base Lewis“Anytime that you think you’re McChord), for example, buying a only going to live in a home for house is 42 percent and 41 percent three or four years, it’s probably not cheaper than renting, respectively. a good idea to buy, even under the So if your family receives PCS most normal of real estate circumorders, you might figure it’s a nostances,” says June Walbert, a certi-

fied financial planner practitioner with USAA. Why? When you are considering buying a house, you have to consider several factors. First you have to consider your personal financial situation, then the current health of the market, your tax bracket, and how long you plan to own the home you are considering buying. The difference in projected savings can be substantial when any one circumstance is varied. For instance, in the Seattle area, if you get a 30-year mortgage at 3.5 percent, are in the 25 percent tax bracket, and plan to stay for seven years or more, your likely savings over renting will be 42 percent, or a hefty $715 per month,Trulia’s Daisy Kong says. However, if you plan to stay only three years, your savings plunge to 16 percent, or $270 per month, says Kong. And don’t forget about the costs of selling your home: Real estate commissions and other fees can cost you six percent of the sale price.That’s more than $10,000 on a $170,000 home — which is a lot

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of cash to spend every three years (or less). In Trulia’s latest survey, Detroit came in at 70 percent cheaper to buy than to rent — the biggest sav-

ings in the country. So an airman stationed at Selfridge Air National Guard Base near Detroit would be a fool not to buy a house, right? Wrong, says Trulia’s Kong. “Homes are really cheap there, but you shouldn’t buy a home just because it’s cheap. Given the costs of moving and the buying and selling process, if you’re not staying in the house for at least seven years, you’ll want to take into account your personal situation before you buy.” Of course, military families generally have access to VA loans, one of the only remaining zero-percentdown mortgage programs.This offers both opportunity and danger. If you buy a home with a small down payment and prices drop, you could easily find yourself underwater and have to bring a check to closing when you sell.Think of it as a delayed down payment. “Plan for the eventuality that you may need to make one (a payment), even if it’s an exit fee rather than a down payment,” says Keith Gumbinger, vice president of HSH.com, the nation’s largest publisher of mortgage and consumer loan information. So before you buy, try a financial fire drill.“I’d encourage families considering buying to model out what would happen financially if they sold in three, five or seven years,” says Jane Hodges, author of the new book “Rent vs. Own.”“I like to call this the equity crunch test.” Military families receive the (taxfree!) Basic Allowance for Housing and other perks and tax breaks (tax-free combat pay, the military retirement system, the military Savings Deposit Program and so on). A family that saves diligently and whose service member gets out after their 20 years could find themselves in a position to do something most Americans can only dream of: Pay cash for a house.


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54 • THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013

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MILITARY TRANSITION RESOURCES

Animal therapy an alternative PTSD Treatment Life-threatening combat situations cause many veterans to be affected by posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD).The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) reports that up to 20 percent of veterans of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars and 10 percent of Gulf War veterans are affected by PTSD. Also affected are as many as 30 percent of Vietnam War veterans. About 400,000 veterans are currently being treated for PTSD. Unlike the loss of a limb or other severe disability, PTSD is a medical affliction from which veterans can recover; a variety of evidencebased therapies and medications are available to treat this condition. However, the road to recovery can be rough, and many veterans find that a canine companion makes the journey a little easier. Although there has been limited scientific research on the effectiveness of animal therapy, there’s no denying that spending time with a dog can reduce anxiety and bring happiness into anyone’s life. According to the VA, dog ownership can bring fun and feelings of love into the lives of those suffering from PTSD. Veterans who have

become hyper-vigilant because they fear attack are able to relax when they know a dog is there to stand watch. Dogs are also found to be able to draw out veterans with isolated personalities, helping them connect with other people and encouraging them to spend time outdoors. In addition, many veterans and service members are comforted by a dog that has been trained to take orders since they became accustomed to giving orders in the military. In 2011 under the direction of Congress, the VA launched a study on the impact of service dog companions on veterans with PTSD. Service dogs are specially trained to perform specific tasks for people who cannot perform the tasks themselves due to a disability.The study was unfortunately suspended in late 2012 and the VA no longer pairs service dogs with PTSD sufferers. Fortunately, several private organizations that recognize the value of service dogs are continuing this effort. Paws for Purple Hearts (PPH) helps heal the psychological scars of combat by enlisting veterans to train service dogs for comrades

who return home with service-related physical injuries. Founded in 2006, PPH was the first program of its kind. PPH instructors working in conjunction with VA centers in California, Virginia and

Maryland help veterans and service members train specially bred Labrador and Golden Retriever puppies for 18 to 24 months. After learning how to respond to more than 90 commands, the service dogs are given to veterans whose mobility is limited due to injuries. According to PPH, taking part in service dog training gives veterans with PTSD a more positive outlook and a renewed sense of purpose. Other programs following PPH’s

lead include Warrior Canine Connection in Maryland and Soldier’s Best Friend in Arizona. Both of these organizations help Veterans train shelter dogs to become service dogs.Train a Dog – Save a Warrior in Texas works with Veterans to train shelter dogs to become their own service dogs. PTSD can hinder a service member’s return to civilian life.The presence of a dog or a veteran’s chance to train a service animal can have an enormous impact on a service member’s chances of making a recovery and assimilating back into his or her family. All of the private organizations in this post are working to help service members and you can, too.These organizations welcome civilian volunteers as well as donations.To help a veteran, visit their websites to learn what you can do. Gabriela D. Acosta is the community manager for the University of Southern California’s masters of social work, one of the top MSW programs in the nation. She is passionate about social justice, community organizing and leadership development. Connect with her on Twitter @Gabyacosta101.

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56 • THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013

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MILITARY TRANSITION RESOURCES

Turning the American dream into a reality By Brianna Bowman Did you know that a military service man or woman owns one out of every seven franchises in the United States? According to International Franchising Association, from 2010 to 2011 the number of veterans investing in the franchise industry almost doubled. With the Bureau of Labor Statics measuring the current unemployment rate at 7.6 percent, finding employment directly after returning home from long-term deployment can be an intimidating prospect. However, own-

ing a franchise may a great perfect alternative to traditional employment for veterans seeking a secure and independent career option after exiting the military.

Why are Franchises and Veterans a Great Match? Mary Kennedy Thompson, a former military member and the current president of the Mr. Rooter® plumbing and drain company, discusses her observations about veteran owned franchises claiming that “people who come from the

military like to belong to systems.” Systems for success are the backbone of the franchising industry. These systems provide experience, stability, and success to both pre-existing and startup businesses. However, the success of the system often depends on how they are implemented within the business by the owner. In that regard, veterans make fantastic franchise owners. Veterans are often well organized and value the consistency and dependability of the systems offered in a franchise.Therefore, veterans and franchises are a great match. Not only do veterans posses the proper disposition and core values that franchisors love to see, but they also have a distinct financial advantage when purchasing their first franchise.

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Franchise companies offer great discounts and benefits to veterans. According the IFA, the Vet Fran program, established by Don Dwyer in 1991, is composed of over 500 franchise companies who are dedicated to supporting veterans through franchise opportunities. Benefits for veterans come in many forms, shapes, and sizes. In particular,The

Dwyer Group®, which was also founded by Don Dwyer, proudly offers retired military members a 25 percent discount on their initial base territory purchase as well as a number of special vendor discounts. Dina Dwyer-Owens, the daughter of Vet Fran’s founder and current CEO of The Dwyer Group, revived the Vet Fran program in 2003 determined to ensure that her father’s dream to “aid veterans’ return to civilian life” would continue to thrive. For veterans interested in the franchise industry, Vet Fran gives them access to a number of significant financial advantages, which helps to make business ownership a reality. For franchisors these discounts offer a way to support and recognize the contributions made by former U.S. military members and also gain reliable and dedicated business partners to represent their brands. For more information visit http://www. dwyergroup.com/vetfran/. For information regarding franchise opportunities offered by The Dwyer Group visit www. leadingtheserviceindustry.com Or visit http://www.vetfran.com/vets/ for more information.

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THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013 • 57

Special Advertising Supplement

MILITARY TRANSITION RESOURCES

Budgeting can help you weather tough times (This content is provided courtesy of USAA.) By J.J. Montanaro CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™

When it comes to money, do you feel like you’re always coming up short? Well, you’re not alone. Only half of Americans say they could cobble together $2,000 if an unexpected expense occurred in the next month, according to a March 2013 survey by the Employee Benefit Research Institute. That’s reason enough to get on the budget bandwagon. To help you jump on, here’s a three-step process for building your own saving and spending plan. Follow along and you just might find some much needed relief.

Get Prepared In its most basic form, a budget is a comprehensive list of income and expenses. Before you can do anything else, you need to figure out what comes in and what goes out. Do this by looking at your pay stubs, bills, bank statements or just an online printout from your checking account and then start crunching the numbers. Income is fairly straightforward:

wages, salary, net sales proceeds, investment income, and pensions or other fixed retirement income. I’ve found that the most helpful way to divide your expenses is to use three categories. Fixed Requirements. Expenses like mortgage, rent, auto insurance, savings and investments (notice where I placed this!), and car payments fit here.This is stuff that you need to get along and that is typically the same each month. Variable Requirements. Again, as the name implies, you need these types of things, but the actual expense varies. Groceries, gas, transportation expenses and utilities are fair examples. Discretionary Expenses. No “requirements” in this title.This is stuff that isn’t necessary to keep you going. We’re talking wants or nice-tohaves. Eating out, gifts, gym memberships and cable/satellite are all examples of this type of expense.


Create and Cut So now comes the question: Where does your money go? Have recent changes caused expenses to gain the upper hand in your monthly life? And have your saving goals

taken a back seat? This exercise should reveal opportunities to trim back or cut out. This is the hard part and there should be no sacred cows.The goal is to find room within your budget to accomplish what you need to get done.This could be as simple as surviving during a difficult stretch without creating a bunch of debt. Or, it might mean freeing up cash to begin or build upon your savings and investment program with the intent of securing your future. Your analysis and commitment

to making changes has yielded the information you need to map out a new normal. A targeted and detailed list of planned income and expenditures will enable you to hold yourself accountable and save for the future. Final Assessment. That’s a teaser; it’s never “final.” However, after some time in the budget trenches you should step back and look at how it’s going. Are you making it work, despite a smaller paycheck? Is your money outlasting the month?

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58 • THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013

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Homeschool teachers Every August and September, it seems, we hear news of public teachers going on strike. Last year one of the most notable locations where this annual tradition occurred was in Chicago. Second City parents were outraged that teachers would wreak havoc with their families’ lives and schedules by being so selfish. Where was their love of teaching and commitment to education that are supposedly more important than money? Parents are understandably frustrated when their district’s teachers go on strike. But how does a teacher’s walkout affect the children he or she teaches? I’d like to tell you how one such strike affected me personally. At the end of my seventh-grade year, my school held an awards ceremony where I witnessed several students receive recognition for accomplishments ranging from service and leadership to excellent grades and perfect attendance. Being a diligent student, I set my sights for the following school year on several goals, including the award for straight A’s, maybe a service or leadership award, and what seemed too easy for me, perfect attendance. Then sometime in the middle of my eighth-grade year, the teachers in our district began threatening to strike.There was a buzz in the air as students and faculty wondered if it would actually happen.

They talked about whether or not the superintendant would bring in a crew of substitutes. Sure enough, one Friday night after we had all gone home, news spread quickly that the teachers were going on strike beginning Monday morning. My family opted to keep me and my three siblings at home in part because there had been threats of violence and also in anticipation of time wasted in classrooms staffed by hurriedly placed substitute teachers. Fortunately, the strike lasted only four days, and everything had returned to normal by the next Friday morning. When the end-of-year awards rolled around, I anxiously waited to receive two awards I knew were coming: straight A’s and perfect attendance.Yet I didn’t receive anything for perfect attendance because the school had counted me absent for the four days when, as it turned out, all the students had simply sat in one big study hall. I was privately disappointed even though I understood the award had little significance in the grand scheme of things. But the incident did drive home a clear lesson for me:The teachers and administrators didn’t know me or care for me quite like my mom and dad. When we read or hear of public school teachers threatening to walk out of their classrooms and go on strike, I remind my children

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HOMESCHOOL OPTIONS

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THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013 • 59

don’t strike but need support how fortunate they are that their teacher will never walk out on her class. Homeschooling moms may feel like quitting when the going gets tough, when their energy is sapped, or when the kids aren’t cooperating. But I’ve never heard a homeschooling mother say that her pay wasn’t enough. Her compensation may not come in the form of a check she can take to the bank, but the pay is outstanding — watching family relationships grow and be strengthened, seeing her children learn something new, spending time together enjoying God’s creation, and coming to know each child deeply and intimately. Mom, if you are thinking of going on strike, please hang on! The rewards are priceless and truly worth your investment of time and energy. Dad, if your wife is thinking of going on strike, you had better get with the program and take ownership of and responsibility for your homeschool. I’ve discovered that most of the home schools that fail do so because the father wasn’t supportive of the mother’s decision to teach their children at home.The problem usually isn’t that mom bears too much of the

workload; it’s that she carries too much of the responsibility. Dad, engage and take responsibility for your home school so that your children’s only teacher doesn’t ever consider going on strike.You can start simply by giv-

ing her a hug and telling her that she is doing an awesome job! Then ask her out on a date — otherwise known as a parent/teacher conference. Walking by faith and enjoying the homeschooling adventure of a

lifetime. Davis Carman is the president of Apologia Educational Ministries, husband to Rachael, father of seven from ages 8 to 22, and author of two children’s books: Good Morning, God and A Light for My Path.

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60 • THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013

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TRAVEL USA

Seasons change gently in the Greater Valley Area There’s no abrupt change from summer to fall in the Greater Valley Area.The new season just sort of floats in on breezes that are increasingly cooler until you finally notice. Leaves go from dusty end-of-season shades to colors that deepen into glowing intensity. Still, there’s no rush to drag out the jackets. In this heart of the South, it’s a gentle passing. For weeks, summer fun continues as fall fires up. Cooler weather brings out the best of the bass and hybrid stripes on West Point Lake, and there’s also good fishing in area streams. At least two major annual bass tournaments are based at Southern Harbor Marina on the lake’s Alabama side.

Piedmont Plateau Birding Trail The Piedmont Plateau Birding Trail plays host to a variety of birds, including those coming south for the winter. Numerous eagles can be

seen around the lake and patrolling the Chattahoochee River as it flows south from West Point Dam. In the Greater Valley Area, there are three approved birding sites on the trail — at Alligator Creek Nature Trail and on the west side of West Point Dam — both at West Point Lake — and at Chambers County Fishing Lake, a large state lake in LaFayette, Ala. Like changes in the weather, fall foliage color comes in lightly. It starts as a tint that intensifies to deep glowing shades that rival any of the well-known fall-foliage tourist trails. Good weather, wildlife, birds and color are a “package” that offer the ultimate in fishing, canoeing and kayaking on West Point Lake and down the Chattahoochee River. At Southern Harbor Marina, there are cabins and pontoon rentals for exploring all 525 miles of shoreline

Life really is greater in the Greater Valley Area!

A Big Salute to the Men and Women of the U.S. Army from the Greater Valley Area! Trace the Greater Valley Area by water. The large “cap” of West Point Lake at our northern tip has mountain biking, camping, fishing, boating and water sports. On south, down the Chattahoochee River, there’s canoeing and kayaking through lush country. At the southern end is Lake Harding with still more to see and do. We ARE water! Come make a splash with us!

334.642.1411 • www.greatervalleyarea.com

ISN’T IT TIME YOUR FAMILY PRESSED

PAUSE?

Take a break from it all and re-charge with the play time that can only come when you vacation with us. Here, overlooking sugar sand and the turquoise Gulf, you’re at the heart of Orange Beach’s finest golf, fishing, seafood and shopping. And with our friendly staff ready to attend to your every need, you’ll want for nothing while you’re here— except, of course, more time. I sl an d H o u s e H o t e l.co m O ra ng e B ea c h, A L | 8 0 0 .2 6 4 .2 6 42

forest. With the abundance of game in the area, deer hunting is also a major attraction. While water and woodlands have defined the Greater Valley Area since Creek Indians located their villages on the banks of the Chattahoochee River, there are many other facets to fall fun in the four cities in two states that make up the area.

Festivals There are several fall festivals in the area.The Greater Valley Area is part of an eight-county Alabama region noted for its natural resources — streams, rivers, mountains, scenic trails — and down-home festivals that celebrate the seasons.

One notable launch for fall is the Labor Day celebration at nearby Callaway Gardens, just 16 miles to the east near Pine Mountain, Ga. A hot-air balloon festival is the high point, with other crafts and attractions for the entire family. As fall draws close to winter, Callaway Gardens opens its famed Fantasy in Lights in December to bring visitors from several states. At home, Christmas arrives in force with the Valleywide Christmas Parade, which goes the entire length from West Point, Ga., through Lanett, Ala. to Valley, Ala. It’s known as one of the largest Christmas parades in the area.

Russell County, Alabama Russell County is a well-hidden treasure located on the eastern Alabama state line. It has a rich history, numerous outdoor activities, and the small-town hospitality the south is famous for. Within driving distance to major cities, the beach, or the mountains, Russell County is the perfect place for a relaxing vacation. Originally home of the Creek Indians, Russell County was established in 1832. The name was given in honor of Col. Gilbert C. Russell. The county seat is Phenix City, named for the Phenix and Eagle Mill located across the Chattahoochee River in Columbus, Georgia. Russell County is home to fascinating history. Fort Mitchell, a military post originally constructed in the Creek War of 1813, is located in Russell County.This fort was the embarkation point for the Lower Creek Nation onto the “Trail of Tears” during the Indian Removal to the West. The Fort has been rebuilt and offers visitors a way to see how pioneers lived during the 1800s.The National Historic Site has a walkthrough museum, a movie focusing on the history of Russell County, and the main fort, as well as an old tavern, cabin and carriage house. To make it easy for both visitors and local citizens to enjoy our river, Phenix City has a scenic riverwalk overlooking the Chattahoochee. When constructing this path, the city tried to use as much of the natural landscaping as possible.The result is over a mile of shady, beautiful path where citizens go to walk, fish and watch rafters.


TRAVEL USA

THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013 • 61

Special Advertising Supplement

Make your memories on Alabama’s Gulf Coast What will it take to make your next vacation a story to remember? The 32 miles of sugar white sand, turquoise water, and small town family fun waiting on Alabama’s Gulf Coast are sure to complete your family’s recipe for a whole different state of memory-making. Gulf Shores and Orange Beach, Alabama is a place where life slows down and people are friendly. From sunny beaches to bay front marinas, shopping squares to historic Civil War forts, exciting zip line adventures to relaxing deep sea excursions, this vibrant coastal community creates the perfect atmosphere to make lifelong memories while bringing you closer to the ones you love.

Sand and Sea Fun

After you build a sand castle together and soak up the sun on the beautifully preserved beaches, there are plenty of ways to experience the turquoise waters of the Alabama Gulf Coast. Spend extended time together on a deep sea fishing adventure, take in the beauty of the bays on a relaxing dolphin cruise, or experience a bird’s eye view of the coast from the seat of a parasail. If you’re ready to pick up the pace, dare to dive in for a scuba adventure bound to satisfy thrill-

seekers and open the door to underwater adventure for beginning divers.The LuLu, Alabama’s first purpose-sunk ship wreck suitable for scuba diving, has recently joined the largest artificial reef program in the United States just off of Alabama’s Gulf Coast. The newest reef wreck is at the perfect depth for beginner diver certification with 50 foot depth clearance at the top of the freighter while also challenging the experienced recreational diver with a bottom level depth of 115 feet. The marine village gathering in the caverns of its hull is just waiting for you to drop by.

Coastal Happenings this Fall When you start to feel the chill of autumn, a lineup of sizzling fall events is just kicking off in Gulf Shores and Orange Beach. Starting Oct. 10-13, join 250,000 lovers of Southern coastal culture for a family-friendly celebration of food, music, and art at the 42nd Annual National Shrimp Festival presented by Zatarains.This free festival features high profile bands and musicians, fine art booths, a sand sculpture contest, 5K and 10K runs, plenty of crafts, games and fun in the Children’s Village, and much more. And of course, come prepared to spoil your taste buds with savory coastal

flavor! For more information about this fun-packed event, visit www. myshrimpfest.com. Bring your family and come catch some holiday spirit at Coastal Christmas on the Alabama Gulf Coast.This string of celebrations keeps Christmas magic in the air from Thanksgiving to New Year’s. It turns out Santa’s just as jolly about our sugar white sand as sugar cookies! So escape the cold, head to the beach, do some serious shopping, and get back to what’s important with your loved ones this holiday season.

A Setup for Memories Spend your days relaxing on the

beach, or fill every moment with new experiences and adventures. Take your pick from distinctive local restaurants serving up generous helpings of savory coastal flavor and Southern hospitality. And as the sun sets over the Alabama Gulf Coast, settle into a quiet beach home, comfortable condo or luxurious hotel, and relax in the style that fits you and the people you love. If you’re ready to turn the tide on average vacations, visit www.gulfshores.com, or contact a vacation planning specialist at 866-635-3483. Our family welcomes your family to come and experience a whole different state of togetherness.

With the longest urban whitewater course in the nation, fly-fishing, a vibrant history, and a scenic Riverwalk along the Chattahoochee River, Russell County has something to suit everyone. From the active traveler searching for a new adventure to a family desiring some much needed peace and quiet, we have the perfect itinerary to fit your needs. Spend a relaxing vacation in our area, and discover firsthand true southern hospitality!

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62 • THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013

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TRAVEL USA

Three Rivers, Lake Kaweah, and Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks

Military friendly with great R&R We celebrate Autumn in Three Rivers and Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks with the sound of rivers tumbling over rocks, the sight of dogwood turning pink un-

der giant sequoias, and the antics of black bears as they hunt for every last acorn among the golden leaves of oak trees. Wild turkeys seek their

Discover ~ Explore ~ Enjoy We honor our military for the job that they do and invite them to visit our military friendly destination for their R&R. The Sequoia Foothills Chamber’s annual Hero Appreciation Months Program (Jan.-March) gives our military and their families a 20% discount on lodging, retail, restaurants and services.

877-530-3300 info@threerivers.com

• Camping and Hiking • Fishing and Swimming • Horseback Riding • Cross-Country Skiing • 9-Hole Golf Course • Boating, Water Skiing and other Water Sports

Photo by Jana Botkin

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Sequoia Park Area Lodging at its Finest A Great Place for R&R Deluxe Room and Suites • Free Wi Fi • Fitness Room • Sauna • In-Room Jacuzzi Tubs • Microwaves and Refrigerators • Outdoor Swimming Pool and Jacuzzi Comfort Inn & Suites- Sequoia & Kings Canyon National Park in Three Rivers, Gateway to the Giant Sequoias 40820 Sierra Drive • Three Rivers, CA 93271 800.331.2140 • 559.561.9000 • fax: 559.561.9010 www.sequoiahotel.com • gm.caa26@gmail.com

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mates then look for the best places to make their nests, tarantulas dance in the middle of the highway, and Crystal Cave offers some really cool Halloween tours. Apples and persimmons ripen, harvest festivals abound, and the Hand weavers of the Valley hold their annual show and sale. It’s the perfect time to view the full moon from Moro Rock, hear High Sierra Jazz Band in concert, or take in our annual Concert in the Grass. And in October, our regular monthly 1st Saturday art festival expands from a one day event to a month-long celebration of life in Three Rivers.  Horseback riding is very popular here in the autumn, along with mountain biking, fishing, and hiking. Autumn is also your last opportunity to visit Mineral King for the year. Mineral King is a very special section of Sequoia National Park which closes on October 28th, weather permitting. Many people make annual treks to this section of Sequoia National Park, to see the aspen turn golden, gaze at crystal clear lakes and high peaks, or pay a visit to Honeymoon Cabin.  Special events this time of year include: • California Student Indian Days in September • Living History Day at the Three Rivers Historical Museum • Old-fashioned family-friendly Halloween Carnival at Three Rivers Union School in October • Kaweah Country 10K/5K Walk/ Run at Lake Kaweah in November • Holiday Bazaar at the Veterans Memorial Building in November • In December it’s Community Caroling around a Bonfire.   In Autumn we also prepare for Hero Appreciation Months, our annual thank you program for our military and first responders. This unique three month program stretches from the first of January through the end of March with discounts, individual celebrations, and family friendly events — ­  including a hilarious bathtub race for charity at Lake Kaweah. By Thanksgiving, the details for Hero Appre-

ciation Months 2014 will be posted for your viewing at http://www. threerivers.com, so feel free to check out the schedule and make your plans to visit us soon! 


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THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013 • 63

Visit Pooler, Georgia for an affordable vacation There is plenty to do this fall in Pooler, with outdoor music concerts, running events, SK8 City Roller Derby team, races and more. Kick back and relax in a fun environment that is friendly to your wallet. Come to Pooler, where we have great, affordable hotels, lots of attractions, and a short drive to Tybee and other beaches. Plus, Fort Stewart and Hunter Army Airfield’s PX are nearby. Pooler is a military-friendly community and the closest interstate connection to Savannah and a short drive to the beaches at Tybee Island, GA and Hilton Head Island, SC. If you’re ready for a change, we have what you need and your wallet will enjoy the savings, too. We have hotels with ample, free parking — some with pet friendly areas — dozens of restaurants, shopping areas, and other attractions. Plus, we are home to rising country music stars Jared Wade and Chuck Courtenay. Both have recently cut CD’s in Nashville,TN.The Pooler Outdoor Music Concert Saturday, Oct. 5 features Chuck Courtenay and is sponsored by Savannah Tire. In addition to the concert, we have several special events in the next few months of 2013 such

as the Big Nasty Mud Run Sept. 21, Taste of Pooler and the Westside Thursday, Sept.19, Cooler in Pooler Resolution 5K and 15K Saturday, Jan. 4, 2014 and more! Special military discounts are available at Pooler hotels and several of the city’s local attractions. Plus, our hotels offer ample, free parking and several have petfriendly areas. For help in planning your visit you may contact marketing@visitpooler.com.

pick up from your Pooler hotel or motel.

Places to Stay Pooler offers great accommodations at a variety of local hotels and motels.You’ll find quality accommodations that are affordable and provide ample, free parking and some have petfriendly areas. Our large and small hotels and motels include suites, extended stay options, traditional rooms, dining and meeting facilities, and more. If you’re including a visit to Savannah some trolley tour companies may

Things to See and Do Experience the excitement of a bombing mission, learn what it was like to Escape and Evade the enemy, enjoy military discounts, and see how we honor our military

at Pooler’s Mighty Eighth Air Force Museum.The Eighth Air Force was activated during World War II at Hunter Army Airfield as part of the Army’s Air Corps. A new IMAX Theatre, SK8 City, two multi-screen theatres, amusement parks, mix of stores, restaurants, banks, and other conveniences let you stay close to Pooler for shopping needs. Pooler also boasts a number of recreational attractions such as Oglethorpe Speedway Park, Tom Triplett Park (complete with lake, walking and biking trails, tennis courts, disc golf, and more),YMCA, family amusement parks, and a 102acre recreation complex. Two golf courses are in or near Pooler. Kayaking and canoeing rentals and tours of the nearby Ogeechee River are easily available. For more information call 912748-0110, e-mail marketing@visitpooler. com or visit www.visitpooler.com. Our Pooler Chamber of Commerce and Visitors Bureau, Inc. office is near I-95, exit 102, at 175 Bourne Avenue (inside the Mighty Eighth Air Force Museum).


64 • THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013

TRAVEL USA

www.thegriffon108.com

Central Florida kicks off fun-filled fall season With the kids back in school, memories of summer will fade quickly as the mercury begins to dip. Ward off the coming chill by planning a trip to Central Florida’s Polk County. Conveniently located between Orlando and Tampa, and an easy drive to Florida’s famous beaches, the area is sunny and warm nearly year-round. Central Florida comes alive with an assortment of outdoor activities, festivals and events as milder autumn temperatures settle in. Polk County hosts the Central Florida NatureFest from Oct. 3-6, 2013; which offers more than two dozen nature tours over the course of four days. View butterflies on a swamp buggy adventure, enjoy guided Seg-

way and airboat nature excursions, tour rare conservation lands or try your hand at wildlife photography. Register for all these tours, and more, at www.visitcentralflorida. org/naturefest. You can enjoy the natural treasures of Polk County even if your visit doesn’t coincide with the annual nature festival.The area is home to 554 sparkling lakes, surrounded by more than 25,000 acres of unspoiled recreational parks and preserves, including Circle B Bar Reserve — which USA TODAY proclaimed as one of “51 Great Places to See Wildlife.”The 1,267 acre former cattle ranch has an added attraction in the Polk Nature Discovery Center, a nature-showcasing starting a

t

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$55.00 per night

Centrally located between the beaches and the theme parks. Complimentary full hot breakfast buffet daily. Home of the legendary Why Not Lounge and Sterling Room Café. Howard Johnson Plaza Altamonte Springs Orlando North 230 W. State Road • Altamonte Springs, FL 32714 407.862.4455 • 877.994.9668 (24-hour reservation line)

welcome center featuring interactive displays and exhibits such as the Learning Tree, an indoor Oak tree replica, complete with observation deck, ready for climbing by adults and children alike. With so many fresh-water lakes nearby, there are ample opportunities to enjoy recreation on the water, such as water skiing, wakeboarding, kayaking, air-boating and world-class fishing in the Largemouth Bass Capital of the World. Mid October sees the return of two yearly favorites: the Boktoberfest plant sale Oct. 19 at Bok Tower Gardens in Lake Wales; and the Lake Mirror Classic Automobile Festival, Oct. 18-20 in Lakeland. Now in its 14th year, the Lake Mirror Classic is considered one of the “must do” collector car shows in the southeastern United States. The event attracts 35,000 spectators to admire the more than 600 show vehicles displayed around the restored 1920s, art decoinspired Lake Mirror promenade in downtown Lakeland, Florida — one of the most scenic venues in the country, www. lakemirrorclassic.com.The annual Boktoberfest began as a plant sale and has blossomed into one of Florida’s most unique Octoberfest celebrations, including a Biergarten, live entertainment, German food, craft and seasonal beers, tree climbing, face painting, pumpkin painting, prize drawings and more.The free event includes complimentary admission to Bok Tower Gardens, www.boktoberfest.com. Bok Tower Gardens, a National Historic Land-

mark located on one of the highest points in peninsular Florida, features a 205-foot neo-gothic and art deco “Singing Tower” carillon set amidst a historic garden designed by famed landscape architect Frederick Law Olmsted Jr. The 60-bell carillon entertains visitors with daily concerts and the attraction hosts numerous events all year long. www.BokTowerGardens.org. Every Saturday and Sunday in October, Florida’s newest theme park, LEGOLAND® Florida — in Winter Haven — will celebrate Brick-orTreat with safe and family-friendly festivities.This spooky, kooky event features a Haunted Scavenger Hunt in Miniland USA, trick-or-treating along the brick-or-treat trail, LEGO

build activities, the largest LEGO Jack-O-Lantern in the world, Halloween entertainment, an all-kids costume contest and a few surprises along the way. LEGOLAND Florida is an interactive 150-acre theme park geared towards families with children between the ages of two and 12. In July 2013, the world’s largest LEGOLAND park unveiled a major expansion —The World of Chima presented by Cartoon Network, based on the new product line, LEGO® Legends of ChimaTM.

Be one with nature.

Central Florida’s Polk County is no ordinary bivouac. It’s a fun-filled destination where you can kick back and kindle some well-deserved R&R. Explore the new LEGOLAND® Florida, one-of-a-kind attractions and our stunningly beautiful natural wonders. Why not get the recon and plan your escape today?

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The centerpiece of the new World of Chima is an interactive, family-friendly water ride called The Quest for CHI. CHI is a mystical energy source that flows through the Sacred Waters of Chima, giving life and energy to the kingdom. LEGOLAND Florida offers free admission to active duty U.S. military personnel, now throughout 2013 — and discounts for accompanying family and friends. Contact your military base ticket office for details. For more on LEGOLAND Florida and The World of Chima, visit www. legolandflorida.com. Autumn will offer up pleasant weather to watch real cowboys compete in officially sanctioned Saturday Night Rodeos at Westgate River Ranch Resort.The resort is a 1,700-acre authentic dude ranch located in Central Florida near Lake Wales. Ranch guests — and day visitors — can unleash their inner cowboy/cowgirl and enjoy a variety of activities, including horseback riding, guided nature hikes, fishing, boating, swimming, trap and skeet shooting, hayrides, airboat and swamp buggy rides, a petting zoo and even line-dancing at the River Ranch Saloon, www.wgriverranch.com.

Coming this fall, Westgate River Ranch Resort will also be the host site for Tough Mudder Central Florida 2013, Nov. 2-3. Billed as “the world’s toughest adventure challenge series,”Tough Mudder features hardcore, 10 to 12 mile obstacle courses designed by British Special Forces to test the “all around strength, stamina, mental grit and camaraderie” of its competitors. Course obstacles often play off of common human fears, such as fire, water and heights and are designed to encourage teamwork among participants, with many obstacles purposely designed to be very difficult to complete alone. Tough Mudder is a proud supporter of Wounded Warrior Project.To date,Tough Mudder participants have raised more than $5 million to support thousands of warriors returning from the battlefield, www. toughmudder.com/events/centralflorida-2013. For more ideas and information to plan your next getaway, go to www.VisitCentralFlorida.org, follow us on Twitter (@VisitCentralFL) and Like Us on Facebook (Facebook.com/VisitCentralFlorida).

THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013 • 65

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66 • THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013

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‘The Walking Dead’ resurrected at Universal Orlando

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Fans with a voracious appetite for AMC’s “The Walking Dead” will have a chance to walk in the footsteps of human survivors when Universal Studios Hollywood and Universal Orlando Resort debut all new terrifying mazes inspired by season three of the critically-acclaimed, award-winning television series at this year’s Halloween Horror Nights events beginning Sept. 20. The eerily authentic and disturbingly real maze experiences will place “Halloween Horror Nights” guests at the heart of the show’s once impenetrable prison, the West Georgia Correctional Facility, now overrun by hordes of flesh-eating walkers.The mazes at Universal Studios Hollywood and Universal Orlando will send guests cowering through the walker-infested wilderness that surrounds the prison and into the seemingly utopian town of Woodbury where gruesome secrets are concealed. Universal Orlando is also dedicating its entire “Halloween Horror Nights” street experience to “The Walking Dead” — making this the first time ever that all of the scare zones throughout the park will be themed after a hit television series. Guests brave enough to walk the streets of Universal Studios Florida will encounter iconic scenes from all three seasons of the hit show — including the perilous city of Atlanta and Hershel’s dismal barn — and fleets of blood-thirsty walkers who are hungry for their next victim. “What’s great about working

with a property like ‘The Walking Dead’ is that each season presents new environments and characters for us to draw inspiration,” said John Murdy, Creative Director for Universal Studios Hollywood.“With the prison as the main setting of season three, we seized this opportunity to recreate that very environment, down to the last detail, to be as genuine and authentic to the show as possible.

Using movie-quality production value, our goal is to make guests feel as if they are mired in the world of blood-thirsty zombies, which is something you can only do at ‘Halloween Horror Nights.’” For more information about “Halloween Horror Nights” at either Universal Orlando Resort or Universal Studios Hollywood, visit www.HalloweenHorrorNights.com.

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THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013 • 67

Special Advertising Supplement

‘Mail Call’ exhibition travels to Cape Fear exhibit curator Lynn Heidelbaugh of the National Postal Museum. “Writing and receiving correspondence has a significant power to shape morale.The relationship between mail and morale is expressed time and again in messages from deployed military personnel, and it is a compelling reason behind the extraordinary efforts to maintain timely mail service.” Mail Call is a National Postal Museum exhibition organized and cir-

culated by the Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Service. Cape Fear Museum of History and Science, a department of New Hanover County, is open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday, and 1:00 to 5 p.m. Sunday; Labor Day through Memorial Day. Admission for activity duty military from Nov. 9, 2013 – Jan. 4, 2014 is free and provided by The Big Read Grant. The Museum is located at 814 Market Street in historic downtown Wilmington, N.C. More information: www.capefearmuseum.com.

e

Mail Call

Exhibit on view November 9, 2013 - January 20, 2014

From the battlefront to the homefront, explore military mail and communication from the American Revolution to current wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Active duty military admitted free.

Cape Fear Museum

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For reservations and details, visit our website: www.GSMR.com, or call 800-872-4681 226 Everett St. • Bryson City, NC

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Mail Call is a National Postal Museum exhibition organized and circulated by the Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Service.

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and correspondence both written and recorded on audiotape.The exhibit offers an appreciation of the importance of military mail and the hard work that has gone into connecting service men and women to their government, community and loved ones at home. Mail Call features a number of items that bring to life the story of military mail. One such highlight is a kit with supplies for “Victory Mail,” a microfilm process developed in World War II to dramatically shrink the volume and weight of personal letters. Beginning in 1942, V-Mail used standardized stationery and microfilm processing to produce lighter, smaller cargo —150,000 microfilmed letters could fit in one mailbag. Visitors will also gain access to dramatic firsthand records and heartfelt sentiments through excerpts from letters exchanged between writers on the front line and the home front. The exhibit also explores how the military postal system works today and describes the new ways the men and women of the armed forces are communicating with home. From the earliest handwritten letters that took days or even months to deliver, to today’s instant communication via e-mail or the Internet, Mail Call presents the changing look and format of mail pieces through the decades. It also examines the complex operations systems set in place to ensure safe delivery, and it explores the incalculable role mail plays in maintaining the morale of American soldiers, sailors, marines, and airmen. “Mail has always played a very important role in the lives of the men and women of our armed forces and their families at home,” said

8

A name is shouted out, and a parcel is handed through the crowd to its eager recipient — mail call is a moment when the front line and home front connect. Letters, news, and packages from home unite families, boost morale, and in wartime, elevate the ordinary to the extraordinary.The traveling version of the National Postal Museum’s permanent exhibition,“Mail Call” explores the history of America’s military postal system, and examines how even in today’s era of instant communication, troops overseas continue to treasure mail delivered from home. Mail Call tells the fascinating story of military mail and communication — from the American Revolution to current wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.The exhibition will open Nov. 9, 2013 at Cape Fear Museum. Mail Call closes January 19, 2014. Throughout American history, the military and postal service have combined forces to deliver mail under challenging — often extreme — circumstances. But whether it takes place at headquarters or in hostile territory, on a submarine or in the desert, mail call forges a vital link with home. On the battlefront and at home, mail has long sustained the vital connections between military service members and their family and friends. With compelling documents, photographs, illustrations and audio stations, Mail Call celebrates the importance of this correspondence. Visitors can discover how military mail communication has changed throughout history, learn about the armed forces postal system and experience military mail through interesting objects

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68 • THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013

www.thegriffon108.com

TRAVEL USA

Admission is free— the experience is priceless The 40,000 square foot Billy Graham Library in Charlotte, North Carolina — Billy Graham’s hometown — chronicles the life and ministry of the world-famous pastor.The library is a multimedia experience that continues Graham’s more than 70 year legacy of delivering the simple yet profound message of God’s love. Built to resemble a large barn symbolic of his formative years as the son of a dairy farmer, the main facility houses six exhibits, four galleries of memorabilia from around the world, and two theaters, which cover the span of Graham’s lifetime ministry and the innovative outreach of the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association today.

The highlight of the library experience is “The Journey of Faith” tour which features engaging film presentations and fascinating exhibits covering important events and developments in Graham’s remarkable life. Visitors can explore the 1949 Crusade in Los Angeles that thrust him onto the national scene; his vibrant relationship with his late wife, Ruth Bell Graham; his pioneering use of radio, television, and motion pictures to share God’s hope; his relationships with numerous American presidents; and his bold preaching behind the Iron Curtain in communist territory during the Cold War. Upgrades to the library include the addition of thousands of books from Graham’s

Charlotte

private collection, a 15’ x 31’ mural titled “The Cross,” and a prayer room. Billy Graham’s boyhood home — built by his father, Frank Graham, in the 1920s — has been carefully relocated and reconstructed adjacent to the library, which is just a few miles from the home’s original location. When Billy was nine years old, his family moved into this twostory brick colonial home, where he lived until he left for college.The interior features some of its original décor, as well as authentic appliances, furniture, and fascinating memorabilia from the Graham family. Visitors also have the opportunity to take a scenic stroll through the memorial prayer garden, where Ruth Bell Graham and gospel music legend George Beverly Shea are buried. During the spring, the garden is especially lush with colorful flowers, shrubs and trees. While they’re here, guests often enjoy lunch at the Graham Brothers Dairy Bar, which features a selection of delicious meals and snacks such as Mama Graham’s chicken salad, the Billy Frank hot dog, fresh salads, soups, soft drinks, ice cream cones and cookies. In Ruth’s Attic bookstore, visitors discover a great selection of Bibles, books from the Graham family, classic sermons on DVD, biographies, music, apparel, and unique gifts. Active-duty service

North Carolina

members who either have their military ID or are in uniform receive a 10 percent discount on all purchases in both the bookstore and the dairy bar. The library also hosts many other kinds of special events each year that draw diverse audiences. Book signings have featured former President George W. Bush and former first lady Laura Bush; the longtime second baseman for the New York Yankees and 1960 World Series MVP, Bobby Richardson; and Louis Zamperini, the Olympic star and World War II hero whose life story — and life-changing encounter with Billy Graham — is told in the No. 1 best-seller “Unbroken.” The library also welcomed the “Gaither Homecoming,” which showcased more than 140 of gospel music’s leading artists. The library will also host its first annual Ladies Night Out on November 22. Casey Schutrop, author of “Grandma’s Christmas Legacy:The Testimony of the Tree,” will present an inspiring discovery of who we are and to whom we belong. After her presentation, guests can enjoy time in the beautifully decorated library, start their Christmas shopping early in Ruth’s Attic bookstore, and have Casey Schutrop sign books for gifts. Admission for Ladies Night Out is $15.

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In 1959, Billy Graham sat as a tourist in Moscow’s Lenin Stadium and prayed he could one day return to proclaim God’s love and forgiveness under the harsh atheistic regime. Over the next three decades, he saw many doors open across the Eastern bloc, for FREE ADMISSION

his and other voices. Soon the Iron Curtain came crashing down. Step back in time at the Billy Graham Library through state-of-the-art exhibits and discover how God used a simple farm boy to help bring peace to Eastern Europe. Come just as you are.

Monday to Saturday, 9:30–5:00 • BillyGrahamLibrary.org • 704-401-3200 •

Reservations are required for groups of 15 or more; call 704-401-3270 • 4330 Westmont Drive • Charlotte, North Carolina

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THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013 • 69

Gateway Festival at Kings Mountain, N.C. The Gateway Festival, celebrating Kings Mountain, North Carolina’s designation as the Gateway City to all three area parks, will bring “Music, Muskets and Merriment” downtown to Patriots Park on Oct. 12, 2013. This day long, 10 a.m.–5 p.m., fall festival is a community celebration of music, art, history and culture and will feature music from the North Carolina Foothills, including Bluegrass, Folk, Americana and Country music at the Gazebo in Patriots Park. Visitors will have an opportunity to witness a battle re-enactment with live musket and cannon fire and there will be a Revolutionary War encampment at the park. The ever favorite Cute Critters beauty contest will showcase some unique and cuddly pets and Classic cars will surround the park. A free shuttle will take visitors to the Historic Museum where Civil War re-enactors will be encamped, the Southern Arts Depot for their “Gateway to the South” exhibit with children’s “make and take” art activities and an open house at the Joy Performing Arts Center. The shuttles will have a couple of

special round trips to the Kings Mountain National Military Park, celebrating the 233rd anniversary of the Battle of Kings Mountain, a Patriot victory over the British and the turning point of the Revolutionary War. Free parking is available at

The Gateway Festival, celebrating

Kings Mountain, North Carolina’s

designation as the Gateway City to all three area parks, will bring “Music,

Muskets and Merriment” downtown to Patriots Park on Oct. 12, 2013. all shuttle stops and on-board tour guides will share the history of Kings Mountain. A special 5k race will start out the festival, winding through the West End Historic District. A wide array of art, craft and food vendors will be throughout Patriots Park. The event is free. For more information, call 704-7340333 or visit www.cityofkm.com.

discover history and adventure

Only 5 minutes from Downtown Charleston

3 remarkable vessels 28 historic aircraft medal of honor museum vietnam-era naval support base Patriots Point honors active duty military in uniform with FREE admission 40 Patriots Point Road, Mt. Pleasant, SC 29464 PatriotsPoint.org 843.884.2727 Open Daily 9 am - 6:30 pm


70 • THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013

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Make North Myrtle Beach your fall destination Pleasantly located on the northern end of the Grand Strand, North Myrtle Beach offers an abundance of exciting activities that are sure to please anyone. It’s no wonder North Myrtle Beach welcomes millions of visitors each year! Over the years we have welcomed thousands of our service men and women for some much needed R&R with family and friends.The North Myrtle Beach area is the home of great resorts, championship golf, exciting entertainment, fine dining, fabulous shopping, casino boats, bountiful vineyards and wineries, as well as great fishing and boating. If you’ll be visiting during the

month of October, plan your trip around our Endless Summer Festival! Instead of welcoming fall with open arms, we insist on celebrating never-ending warmth with this great festival! Grab your beach chair and friends for a fun-filled day, Saturday, Oct. 26th from 10 a.m. - 4 p.m. on Main Street. Enjoy fabulous entertainment, lots of specialty craft vendors, food galore, a classic and antique car show and children’s area with community stage and carnival rides. Best of all, this also includes a FREE concert! The North Myrtle Beach area features over 12,500 vacation rental options. Choose from small resorts, hotels, or lavish vacation resorts

with every amenity imaginable to some of the best RV resorts that camping has to offer. Depending on your accommodation needs, vacationing style and budget, North Myrtle Beach has the perfect vacation accommodation match for you. There is never a shortage of dining options in North Myrtle Beach. Choose from your favorite national chains to locally owned and operated establishments that will suit everyone. From Calabash style seafood to steaks and burgers, we have a wide variety of options! Fishing is a popular pastime for North Myrtle Beach visitors. Some of the largest and most prized fish can be caught off the coast of South Carolina, which is just one reason local fishermen work every

month of the year. Enjoy inshore, offshore, pier, surf and artificial reef fishing ! In North Myrtle Beach we believe that it’s our pace of life that separates us from the crowd. Even with so much to do nearby, our relaxed, peaceful environment lets you truly unwind. It’s the perfect place to take a long walk on our nine miles of beaches, soak up the sun and scenery, and create wonderful memories. A North Myrtle Beach vacation will remind you of what’s important in your life; family, friends and great times! For more information on accommodations, dining, and events order your free Visitors Guide by visiting www.nmbcoc. travel or calling toll free at 866-842-0455.

Berkeley County Naturist paradise

Looking For An Exciting Getaway?

Discover

Berkeley County, South Carolina

Berkeley County is known for being a naturist paradise with the lush green forest, and 250,000 acres of diverse plant and animal communities in the Francis Marion National Forest. Visitors flock to the forest to catch a rare glimpse of the endangered red cockaded woodpecker, amongst other intriguing birds such as the bald eagle and blue heron. While in Francis Marion National Forest, be sure to enjoy the numerous biking, hiking and horse trails. For the hunting enthusiasts, Berkeley County proves to be one of the most desirable locations in the nation. Deer, turkey and quail are popular with the locals, and don’t miss one of our infamous “Dove Shoots.” For the water activist, Berkeley County is a “Water Wonder World.” The Cooper River is the only known location in South Carolina to offer an underwater history trail. During the Civil War, the waterways were extremely active and at the current location of the Old Santee Canal the “Little David was built. The “Little David” was a semi-submersible torpedo boat that attacked the USS Ironsides. On a calm day, scuba divers flock to see the extraordinary remains of a British War Ship. Visit the Santee Cooper Locks

on the Cooper River, an engineering marvel which allows visitors to experience the second largest water lock in the United States, which lowers boats 75 feet from Lake Moultrie to the Cooper River. Today’s rivers, lakes and streams remain a route from Charleston to Columbia. Residents and visitors enjoy the recreational aspects of the Berkeley County waters called the “Berkeley Blueways” that feature 20 canoeing and kayaking trails.These water trails take visitors through pristine landscapes full of wildlife. During blooming season, wildflowers rich with the colors of the rainbow line the banks. Egrets, herons, eagles, fish, turtles and alligators make these waters home. For the high-impact adventure seeker, Berkeley County offers world-class waterskiing, jet skiing, sailing, wind surfing, and boating on Lake Moultrie and Lake Marion. Don’t forget the great fishing opportunities Berkeley County offers. Visitors come to try their luck in our waters that produce state and world record catches from the Large-Mouth Bass and the Arkansas Blue Catfish to the Red Breast Brim and Crappie. For information on Berkeley County, SC call 843-761-8238 or check us out at www.visitberkeleycounty.com.

Peppertree Ocean Club

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We offer studios, one and two bedrooms. Most have ocean views and private balconies. We have two outdoor pools, an indoor pool, four outdoor hot tubs and one indoor. We also have a seasonal tiki hut. Call now to reserve your room as units ll up fast! 1908 North Ocean Blvd. ♦ N. Myrtle Beach, SC 29582 ♦ 843-249-1421

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THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013 • 71

Special Advertising Supplement

Fall in love with Charleston, S.C. The cooler days of fall are a great time to explore South Carolina! Families of all interests will find so much to experience in Charleston. Each year, Charleston is consistently rated amongst the country’s top travel destinations. Here, you’ll discover scenic beaches, a historic downtown, and a county park system that provides unlimited hours of entertainment at amazing water parks, fishing piers, recreational activities, camping, marsh-front vacation cottages, and much more! Seeking an affordable and more adventurous alternative to the typical hotel stay, centrally located to all that Charleston has to offer? James Island County Park is your destination.

James Island County Park Even though James Island County Park is conveniently located to downtown Charleston and area beaches, visitors may want to stay inside the park to enjoy its endless activities. This 643-acre park offers miles of paved and unpaved walking and biking trails winding around creeks and other natural settings. Rent a bike, pedal boat, or kayak for instant adventure.You’ll find open meadows, a freshwater lake and tidal creeks accessible for fishing and crabbing, a state-of-the-art playground, a seasonal spray play fountain, picnic areas, and an offleash dog park. Up for a challenge? Scale the park’s 50-foot climbing wall, designed to accommodate all ages and abilities. Or, schedule your group on the park’s thrilling Challenge Course, the ultimate teambuilding experience.

Events and Activities A variety of family-friendly events and programs are offered yearround at James Island County Park. Highlighting all things environmentally friendly in a fun atmosphere, the sixth annual Carolina Green Fair will be held at the park on Sept. 22.Then, James Island County Park is illuminated with the sights of the season at the Holiday Festival of Lights, featuring millions of twinkling bulbs on hundreds of shining displays and much more holiday fun. Voted one of the Top 20 events in the Southeast for 2013 by the Southeast Tourism Society, the Holiday Festival of Lights kicks off on Nov. 8, and runs through Dec. 31, 2013. Dog owners will find a large an off-leash park for their canine companions right within James Island County Park all year long. Plus, bring Fido out on select nights for live music and social events right in the dog park at Yappy Hour. Looking for a venue for a group gathering, reunion, party, or even wedding? James Island County Park is home to several outdoor shelter areas available for rental, as well as

the climate-controlled Edisto Hall.

Stay with us!

The Campground

For more information on all the Charleston County Park and Rec-

For an alternative to the typical hotel stay, consider sleeping under the stars at James Island County Park, a secure, secluded location available for primitive tent camping. Or, enjoy the park’s RV campground, complete with full hookups and 24-hour security. When camping at this island getaway, you’ll enjoy the luxury of a full-service campground store complete with propane, ice and firewood sales, an activity center, free Wi-Fi, grills, ceramic bathhouses, a laundry facility, and not to mention, all the fun things to do at James Island County Park.The park’s RV campground also features pull-thru sites, a dump station and wheelchair accessibility.

reation Commission’s parks and events, call 843-795-4386 or visit www.ccprc.com. Let yourself go!

The Cottages Nestled within the natural setting of James Island County Park are 10 modern vacation cottages, equipped with all the conveniences needed for a relaxing get-away. A perfect gathering spot for families and friends, the cottages offer glorious views overlooking the Stono River Marsh. Each cottage has three bedrooms, is fully furnished, and sleeps up to eight people. Cottage amenities include a modern kitchen, bathroom, linens, phones, television, and a marsh-front screened porch. Plus, after enjoying all the park has to offer, we welcome you to visit other areas of Charleston by hopping on the park’s round-trip shuttle.

20% Military Appreciation Discount

Our way of saying thank you for all you do. As South Carolina’s best kept secret, Fripp Island Golf & Beach Resort is the perfect place to get away to relax and unwind. Offering 36 of the most strikingly beautiful holes of golf you’ll ever play, Ocean Point links course, boasts 10 holes with stunning views of the ocean or inlet and Ocean Creek, is one magnificent panoramic view after another of the great salt marsh and freshwater lakes. Looking for more? Fishing is available in one of our rental skiffs or you can charter a boat and fish the Gulf Stream, improve your tennis game or enjoy our nature trails, swimming pools, dining and more. As our way of saying thank you, all military personnel receive a 20%* military appreciation discount on lodging. Please call (877) 760-0595 for this offer or visit our website to learn more about us.

www.FrippIslandResort.com *Does not apply to existing reservations. Based on a two night stay.


72 • THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013

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Alamogordo: birthplace of America’s missile activity Not far from the city of Alamogordo, nestled in the Tularosa Basin in southern New Mexico, lies “The Birthplace of America’s Missile and Space Activity” at a facility known as White Sands Missile Range. It was also known in the past as “White Sands Proving Grounds” and a few other “White Sands” names.This facility is still an important part of on-going research and space exploration. Range control in this area will soon be joined on the west side of the Organ Pass by the newest private commercial space endeavors known to all world-wide as New Mexico’s Spaceport America. What is not widely known about White Sands Missile Range or “WSMR” (pronounced “Whiz-Mar” by the locals) is that the wealth of all this military history and space engineering is available to the average tourist, military and civilian alike. Just inside the main gate at WSMR is the small but mighty White Sands Missile Range Museum and Missile Park featured here. Although the Museum is located on an Army installation, it is open to the public. Both the museum and the park are fascinating

places, and here everyday tourists can browse through the history of the area which makes up the Missile Range.This history includes things from the Native Americans, through the Old West ranching and mining era, as well as, the Atomic and Missile age.

White Sands Missile Range Museum and Missile Park

Prehistoric Farmers to Hard Rock Miners to Rocket Scientists… At the White Sands Missile Range museum you can trace the origin of America’s missile and space activity, find out how the atomic age began and learn about the accomplishments of scientists like Dr. Wernher von Braun and Dr. Clyde Tombaugh at White Sands. Displays also include the prehistoric cultures and the rip-roaring Old West found in southern New Mexico. For an area map and driving directions, go to http://www.wsmr-history.org/ map.htm. The museum also has a gift shop with items from local artists and a variety of goods featuring the missile range logo and other aspects of

Wayne County, Ohio

Military Friendly Travel Destination The rural charm of Wayne County’s rolling hills, lush woods and scenic farmland is only the beginning. An abundance of cultural activities and events makes us a great destination any time of year. Known as the “Gateway to Amish Country,” Wayne and the surrounding counties are home to the world’s largest Amish population. Whether you are looking for a peaceful R&R getaway to a cozy bed & breakfast, a shopping experience in a wide variety of stores or an entertaining cultural event, you can find just what you’re looking for in Wayne County. CROSSROADS OF CULTURE AND COUNTRYSIDE 800.362.6474 • 330.264.1800 WWW.WCCVB.COM • INFO@WCCVB.COM

White Sands. For a complete list of items and prices call the gift shop at 575-647-1116. Outside the museum is a missile park displaying a variety of missiles and rockets tested at White Sands.These include everything from the WAC Corporal and Loon — U.S. version of the V-1 — to a Pershing II and Patriot. More than 50 items are on display. To view a list and photos of the missiles and rockets in the missile park visit http://www.wsmr-history.org/ missilepark.htm. Entrance procedures for tourists to White Sands Missile Range are relatively simple.You will need three items to show, your drivers license, vehicle registration, and proof of insurance.You must stop at the Visitors Center on the right just before the gate. Park in the parking lot and proceed inside the Visitors Center where you will need to show your license, registration, and proof of insurance.You will be given a red placard to display in your vehicle. Return to your automobile and proceed to the visitor entrance gate, where security personnel will perform checks and allow you to pass through the gate. You may then proceed approximately 75 yards and turn left into the museum/missile park parking lot.You may be offered the option of leaving your automobile parked in the parking lot and walking to and from the museum.That will be your choice, and is not necessary. There is plenty of parking for RVs and trailers beside the building. The museum is open year-round. The missile park is open everyday from sunrise to sunset. It includes the huge Redstone, the Nike family of missiles and several Navy sounding rockets, in addition to others. There is no fee for either the museum or the park. Were you ever stationed at WSMR, Ft Bliss or Holloman AFB? Military families who are,

or once were, stationed at WSMR still keep in touch through the Museum website.

The mission of the White Sands Missile Range Museum is to collect, curate and exhibit the historical artifacts and other material culture items necessary to interpret the prehistoric, historic and modern occupation and use of the lands occupied by, or in some cases adjacent to, the current 3200 square mile installation. Primary attention will be devoted to educating military personnel in particular, and the region’s civilian population in general, on the Army’s 19th century Indian War campaigns in the Tularosa Basin; the Trinity Site Test; and the rocket, missile and other weapons development projects carried on at White Sands after World War II and during the ensuing Cold War period. More recent test and evaluation activities will be addressed as appropriate. Alamogordo’s area attractions in Southern New Mexico and its neighbors have a lot of military history to offer for information and entertainment to make for oneof-a-kind vacation and pleasure trips with a military influence in a military-friendly community with hotels and restaurants that cater to a military presence. Come view the military past and experience authentic culture and adventure in Alamogordo and the surrounding area. www.alamogordo.com

Preferred iscount Military D Edgewater Hotel, located in the heart of Gatlinburg on the banks of the Little Pigeon River nestled next to the beautiful and majestic Great Smoky Mountain National Park, is ready to serve you with classic Tennessee hospitality.

• Spacious rooms including micro/fridges, coffee makers and private balconies • Arcade area and fitness room • Complimentary quick start breakfast

• Indoor/outdoor swimming pool • Two poolside Jacuzzi’s • Complimentary covered parking • Wi-Fi throughout the hotel

Mention code Operation Vacation to receive your preferred military discount of up to 20% off.*

402 River Road • Gatlinburg, TN 37738 • 800.423.9582 • www.edgewater-hotel.com *Blackout dates, availability and certain restrictions may apply.


TRAVEL USA

THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013 • 73

Special Advertising Supplement

Create your experience in Butler County, Pa. By Sara DiBello Just north of Pittsburgh are beautiful rolling hills and refreshing opportunities. Butler County, Pennsylvania is easily accessed via the PA Turnpike, I-79, I-80 and Routes 422, 19 and 8. Discover Moraine State Park, a 16,725-acre hot spot for activity. During autumn, take in the crisp breeze and the colorful scenery during a cruise on the Nautical Nature pontoon boat. Moraine has a 3,225-acre lake, great for sailing, swimming, fishing, kayaking and windsurfing.You can experience a plethora of land activities as well, including biking, bird watching, disc golf, geocaching and hiking. By the way, the disc golf course is exceptional! If you prefer a more passive experience, a relaxing picnic by the lake is always an excellent option. The North Country Trail, the country’s longest National Scenic Trail, winds throughout the county and through Moraine.You’ll find beautiful wooded landscapes blazed with blue to mark the trail. Moraine State Park also has one of the top most technical mountain bike trails in the world! For fishermen — and women — you can expect to find northern pike, largemouth bass, channel catfish, black crappie, bluegill, muskellunge, walleye, channel catfish and hybrid striped bass.You can even borrow fishing equipment if it’s not in use for an educational program. In fact, you don’t need to bring your own equipment for many activities.You can rent a bike or even a boat! Sports enthusiasts love Butler County because there are golf courses galore! Beginners and pros alike find courses to give them a fun challenge. Racing fans will love Lernerville Speedway, one of the best tracks in the entire country for DIRTcars! The great thing about Butler County is that it’s not far from Pittsburgh. If you want to see the big leagues — Penguins, Steelers, Pirates — it’s just a 20-minute drive from Cranberry Township. Cranberry has tons of hotel options, and you don’t have to worry about the stress or cost of parking. You’ll also find plenty of restaurants and shops to keep you busy.

One restaurant you’ll definitely want to include during your trip is North Country Brewing Company in Slippery Rock. From amazing food to craft brews and an atmosphere too cool for words,“The Brewery” has won over the hearts of many. On the menu, you’ll find some offbeat items like frog legs and elk burgers. Ingredients are locally-sourced and tasty as can be. Oh, and did I mention beer?! You can even take home a really niftylooking growler. And there’s homemade root beer for the kids. If your taste buds are craving some fair treats, you’re in luck. Numerous fall festivals fill the local calendar and offer fun for your whole family. Several farms offer hayrides and let you pick your own pumpkin straight out of the field! The Portersville Steam Show is something you won’t find anywhere else, featuring a Vintage Village, flea market, homemade ice cream and antique steam equipment. Another way to enjoy the rustic autumn scenery is the Butler County Barn Trail.This drive-it-yourself tour features more than a dozen of the area’s most interesting barns. Each barn has a unique history and the backroads leading you to them are so gorgeous in the fall.You could also follow the Washington’s Trail drive-it-yourself tour.This tour leads you in the direction our first president traveled when he was only 21 years old.The Washington’s Trail brochure outlines the path of this dangerous mission, providing interesting history all along the way. This trail is also a wonderful idea to take in the fall. Butler County’s history also includes the birth of the Jeep.Thousands of “Jeepers” make a homecoming journey each year over Father’s Day weekend to celebrate that fact at the Bantam Jeep Heritage Festival. Fan favorites include the off-road trails at Cooper’s Lake Campground and the mud pit, which is a blast for Jeepers and spectators alike.The event also includes a Little Jeepers Playground for the kids, a history exhibit and a WWII encampment. It’s a great way to pay tribute to our forefathers and learn more about the vehicle

Definitely A Cut Above! Get 20% off your entire stay by mentioning the word “Army”* • Complimentary full hot breakfast • Balconies on parade route • Enclosed pool • 100 yards from Great Smoky Mountain National Park & on the Gatlinburg Parkway Thank you for your service!

Clarion Inn & Suites Gatlinburg 1100 Parkway • Gatlinburg, TN 37738 865-436-5656 • 800-933-0777 • www.clariongatlinburg.com *Reservations must be made directly through hotel and are not valid with any other discounts. Not available during holidays, special events or expected sold out dates.

that represents American troops. Now that you have all of these ideas, you’re going to need a place to stay! Camping is one option. You can choose to “rough it” in a secluded campground or relax in a cabin with modern amenities. Most of the campgrounds in Butler County offer a ton of scheduled activities and fun opportunities for the whole family. For those who

don’t do camping, there are a lot of great hotel options — full-service, pet-friendly, some with swimming pools, some with free breakfast. When you’re ready to plan your getaway (hopefully soon!), explore www.VisitButlerCounty.com for brochures, itineraries, information on attractions and a calendar of events. You can even book your stay online. Create your experience in Butler County, Pennsylvania!

on a

Clinton

County, PA 1-888-388-6991 Email: tourism@KCnet.org

new level

Start your adventure by visiting

www.ClintonCountyInfo.com


74 • THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013

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www.thegriffon108.com

New York’s great autumn getaway Wayne County New York is located on the southern shore of Lake Ontario between the cities of Rochester and Syracuse in the northern Finger Lakes Region — known for

its rural charm, vast apple orchards, trophy fishing, drumlins and scenic beauty. In the past Labor Day was the end of summer and the culmination

Challenge yourself at Sky High Adventure Park

Climb around enormous rock formations at Rock City Park, Little Rock City or Thunder Rocks

A simpler way of life along NY’s Amish Trail

? Where do you want to play today

Naturally Yours!

Mountains

d the Enchante EnchantEdMountains.coM cattaraugus county in WEstErn ny 1-800-331-0543

Explore the Past, Reconnect with Nature and Restore your Soul Finger Lakes Region Erie Canal • Lake Ontario

Explore the Erie Canal, quaint villages, wineries and spectacular scenic beauty. Visit Beautiful Wayne County!

800-527-6510 • www.waynecountytourism.com

True Relaxation Begins in Putnam County

Learn more about Putnam County at

www.PutnamTourism.org or Find us on Facebook and Twitter

Your Perfect Fishing R&R

®NYSDED

Year-round trophy fishing in the abundant waters of Great Lake Ontario and the Salmon and Oswego Rivers Historic Fort Ontario, the site of military valor and sacrifice for more than three centuries Accommodations for every taste- from luxurious waterfront hotels to pristine campgrounds

For events & visitor information: 1-800-248-4FUN (4386)

WWW.VISITOSWEGOCOUNTY.COM

tion (DEC) has public hunting areas bordering the shoreline of Lake Ontario. Hiking and biking the historic Erie Canal has become a very popular way to exercise and to experience new destinations. It’s the quiet way to visit new terrain. Ride or walk the path where horses pulled the barges during the early 1800’s. The scenery alone is worth the adventure. There are plenty of other hidden pathways for hiking in the county. Walk to the peak of the Chimney Bluffs 90 feet above the Lake Ontario waters or take a stroll along a boardwalk through an actual Huckleberry Swamp. Wayne County is the number one apple producer in New York State and ranks number two in the nation. An event that celebrates apples is the Annual Apple Tasting Tour. Local businesses promote our great agriculture, fall activities and food during this month long event. Travel our scenic country roads, ablaze in autumn glory from market to market.Take this opportunity to explore the essence of the apple. Each stop is unique, as is the taste and texture of apples. Discover the flavors, colors, and sizes … apples are as individual as we are! Everyone can be an expert! Information regarding this event can be found at www.appletastingtour.com. To plan your Wayne County vacation, go to www.waynecountytourism.com or call 800-527-6510. Information: • Montezuma Wildlife Refuge - www. fws.gov/refuge/montezuma • New York State Department of Environmental Conservation - www.dec. ny.gov • Wayne County Trail Works - www. trailworks.org

‘Fishing Behind the Lines’

Only 60 Miles North of NYC and Just Across the River from West Point

It’s Great Outdoors!

of all things that were fun. Lately that scenario has changed and the good times have been extended. Resort areas have decided to add a couple of months to the vacation season and they now offer some fantastic autumn events for the visiting tourist. In Wayne County it’s pretty darn easy to keep the good times rolling. The hot summer air has dissipated and the cool breezes off Lake Ontario are refreshing.Temperatures are cool, however salmon fishing is hot. The September salmon stage near the tributaries and with a natural instinct start their runs in Wayne County streams. It’s a Pac-man ritual. Chinook salmon enter waterways full of eggs. Brown trout swim close behind, searching for a meal of roe and the silver steelhead follow for easy handouts.The stream side angler is at the top of this food chain and the catches are 30 plus pounds for the salmon, 10 to 15 for the browns and steelhead. The avian migrations are dynamic in the spring and our feathered friends replicate the same journey in September and October.The Montezuma National Wildlife Refuge was established in 1938 as a refuge and breeding ground for migratory birds and other wildlife.The refuge provides resting, feeding, and nesting habitat for waterfowl and other migratory birds. Montezuma is situated in the middle of one of the most active flight lanes in the Atlantic Flyway and the landing field for the birds in right in the middle of Wayne County. If you are a water fowling enthusiast there are designated areas to hunt within the Montezuma Refuge and the New York State Department of Environmental Conserva-

Combining soldiers’ experiences in the military with great fishing creates a natural way to relieve stress and makes for an interesting and exciting television series! “Fishing Behind the Lines” with Don Meissner is a 13-part series produced by WPBS-DT and explores more than just fishing and celebrating the amazing fishing in the eastern Lake Ontario region. The series also highlights the most basic forms of humanity and how we connect to people through recreation. Meissner, who hosted “Rod and Reel Streamside” for several seasons, worked with Fort Drum and WPBS in Watertown, N.Y. to focus on fishing destinations from the perspective of a serviceman or woman. “Each episode highlights a day of fishing in one of the great lakes, regional streams or rivers with

active duty or retired Soldiers as special guests.This program will do much to link the military and civilian communities and foster national pride. Oswego County is a major sponsor of the program and is featured in four episodes on the Salmon River and Lake Ontario,” said David Turner, Director of Community Development,Tourism and Planning. Local episodes to watch for include Episode 4, Salmon River drift boat trip with guides Tom Burke and Andy Bliss; Episode 6, Lake Ontario fishing with Capt.Tom Burke; Episode 7, Salmon River bank fishing with Jim Kelso, Vietnam veteran and volunteer guide. For year-round fishing conditions on Oswego County’s legendary waters and visitor information, go to www.visitoswegocounty.com or call 800-248-4FUN.


TRAVEL USA

THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013 • 75

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Fishing in the Alleghany Highlands Year round in the Alleghany Highlands, the fly fisher can find wild reproducing trout, state stocked trout, trophy stocked trout on private waters, smallmouth and largemouth bass, native brookies, muskies, panfish and perch caught in our lakes, rivers, and streams.The opportunities here are quite diverse, and you can be assured that there are more trout than humans in these mountains.The area offers small outfitters, shuttle service and private water, and you will find that these businesses will go the extra mile because your business really does matter to them and the area. The Jackson River offers a premier fly fishing experience.The access points are easy to find and well spaced.There are also many native brook trout streams in the areas that are accessed through the abundant National Forest in the Alleghany Highlands. Some 50 percent of the land in the Alleghany Highlands is within the George Washington and Jefferson National Forests. One can pursue trophy trout in the private waters available at the Escatawba Farm section of Dunlap Creek. Escatawba Farm has the most productive waters on the creek with its numerous springs that guarantee cold, clear water for outstanding fly fishing.The propri-

etors limit the fishing to eight rods per day, so you are promised weekend solitude, something hard to find on Virginia’s trout waters during the spring. There are two lakes in the area that offer diverse fishing. Lake Moomaw is the result of Gathright Dam which creates great fishing for trout, largemouth and smallmouth bass, perch and panfish.The 2530 acre lake offers all anglers, fly fishers and gear folks these opportunities around the lake’s more than 40 miles of shoreline.There are marinas, campgrounds and primitive camping sites on the lake. Douthat State Park offers many opportunities as well.The lake and stream are stocked with trout during the spring and fall with bass and panfish opportunities throughout the summer. Douthat State Park is a destination in its own right, with some of the best mountain biking trails anywhere, along with great hiking trails.The family oriented activities such as Critter Crawls, Moonlight Canoe Trips and Kayaking 101— an Introduction to Recreational Kayaking — are offered in season. The accommodations in the Alleghany Highlands are diverse from chain motels to inns, B&B’s, cabins, campgrounds, and luxury resorts like the historic Homestead. Both

Covington and Clifton Forge offer the non-angler many opportunities to eat, shop and visit interesting historic and cultural venues such as the Alleghany Highlands Arts & Crafts Center and the C&O Railroad Heritage Center.The Jackson River Scenic Trail runs adjacent to the Jackson River where hiking and mountain biking are popular. Outdoor opportunities such as golf, caving, rock climbing, recreational kayaking, mountain biking and hiking abound throughout the Alleghany Highlands. Visit www.visitalleghanyhighlands.com for more information.

Journey into a mysterious place inhabited by Malayan tigers, orangutans, sun bears, otters, giraffes and much more!

virginiazoo.org • 757-441-2374


76 • THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013

TRAVEL USA

www.thegriffon108.com

Scott County, Va. for music lovers and history buffs As the home of A.P. and Sara Carter and Mother Maybelle, Scott County is the true “birthplace” of country music. It was through the local hills and hollows that A.P. roamed collecting his songs, such as the “Hello Stranger,”“My Clinch Mountain Home,”“Keep on the Sunny Side,” and the well-known “Will the Circle be Unbroken.” Janette Carter, one of A.P. and Sara’s three children, established the Carter Family Fold in 1974 to preserve her parent’s legacy. Janette, and brother, Joe, have since passed, but the legacy continues with a third generation of Carters. The Fold holds performances every Saturday night, and these performances highlight the musical style made popular by the Carter family. In keeping with tradition, no electrical instruments are allowed. In addition to the fold, you can find A.P. and Sara’s original log cabin, plus a well-stocked store and museum of the Carter’s famous recordings.The Carter Fold is an international tourist attraction on the Crooked Road music trail. Scott County definitely has its

Carter family original log cabin.

own sound track, and you can find informal jams every week. Popular pickin’ sites include the Pickin’

Explore Scott County, Virginia…

• Walk in the footsteps of famed frontiersman Daniel Boone. • Visit the homestead of A.P. and Sara Carter, pioneers of traditional country bluegrass. • Float the scenic Clinch River, home to the largest variety of freshwater mussels in the world. • Take a dip in the Devil’s bathtub. • Tour the Crooked Road Music Trail. • Spend the night in a mountain cabin.

You can do all of this and much more in

Scott County, Virginia!

Contact the Scott County Tourism office at 276-386-6521 or explorescottcountyva.com

Parlor in Weber City, where pickers can be found jamming most every day of the week. Every Friday night, locals crowd into Allen Hicks Friday Night Jam Session to either pick or hear traditional mountain music. Other jams are held throughout the county at the historic Dungannon Depot,Thomas Village in Duffield, and the Boozy Creek Community Center. Be sure to bring your dancing shoes when you come to Scott County, Virginia.

Rich History in Scott County Scott County’s rich history spans more than 8,000 years. Visitors can follow in the footsteps of famed frontiersman Daniel Boone or see railroad history both at Fannon Railroad Museum and Natural Tunnel State Park, recently named one of the “Top 20 Tunnels in the World” by The Weather Channel. Native American Indians lived and hunted in Scott County for thousands of years. A number of village sites and artifacts have been

John Anderson Blockhouse

found throughout the county. One in particular, the Flanary Archeological Site, is currently under re-construction. There is so much history to explore in Scott County that you may need much than a week.The Daniel Boone Wilderness Trail Association replicated the John Anderson Blockhouse at Natural Tunnel State Park.The original blockhouse was used as a gathering point for “frontier guns” as pioneers made their way westward along the Daniel Boone Wilderness Trail. Close to the Blockhouse is the Fincastle Loop, part of the Fincastle Turnpike, another historical travel route. Additional historical stops include Bush Mill, one of the last remaining “overshot water-powered flour and grist mills” in the United States.The Mill has a long history and, thanks to local historians, has been rehabilitated and will soon be an operational mill open to visitors. The historic Kilgore Fort House See SCOTT COUNTY page 78


TRAVEL USA

THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013 • 77

Special Advertising Supplement

Wytheville — a community of hospitality By Rosa Lee Jude

Director, Wytheville Convention and Visitors Bureau

Since the beginning of our nation, the Wytheville area has been rolling out a unique brand of hospitality to visitors from near and far. As a community on the Great Road to the West, it was a frequented stopping point.Two hundred years later, two major north-south arteries, Interstates 77 and 81, crossed their routes in the town of 9,000 and made Wytheville a transportation hub of the East Coast. But the town’s true success can be measured by the vast number of people from generation to generation who return to the community each year to stay a few hours, a few days, and some, for the rest of their lives. It’s a welcoming spirit that just makes the visitors want to stay.

Abundance of Recreation There are many reasons why people come to Wytheville for the first time, but, none as apparent as the vast array of outdoor recreation visible in every direction. Nestled in the heart of the Blue Ridge Mountains of Southwest Virginia, there are over 58,000 acres of public lands to hike, bike and horseback ride. Over 240 miles of trails offer a variety of flora and fauna to explore and experience during any season. The New River Trail State Park has not only a 57-mile long trail, but also over 20 miles of river frontage on the New River. Fishing is quickly becoming one of the most popular outdoor sports in the country and a great way for families to relax and have quality time together.The area is a premier fishing destination with numerous types of trophy fish in the lakes, streams, and rivers in Wythe County and the surrounding region. If you enjoying travelling on two wheels, instead of four, there are many biking and motorcycling trails that give riders the chance to travel on the scenic back roads and see the quietest parts of this community. Scenic byways offer refreshing alternatives to the interstate experi-

ence and a chance to leisurely enjoy the landscape.

Rich in History Founded in 1790, Wythe County was named for the first signer of the Declaration of Independence for Virginia, George Wythe. Early settlement can be credited to the access to water — the New River and many creeks — and the abundance of natural resources, including lead. One hundred acres was selected as the county seat in 1792 and Evansham, now Wytheville (pronounced WITH-vill), became the central town. The history of the area patterns the history of the nation with many interesting events, legends, and characters along the way. Wytheville embraces its heritage with over five historical museums honoring medicine, the Civil War, and polio’s unique impact on the area. The new Great Lakes to Florida Highway Museum depicts the mid20th century era with its unique look at transportation. A self-guided historic walking tour showcases local history from pre-Civil War times until today.The region’s only African American Heritage Museum has an emphasis on education through photographs and exhibits. Five locations on the Virginia Civil War Trails mark the route of Toland’s Raid in 1863 and offer a beautiful scenic drive between locations. Few communities can tout being the birthplace of a First Lady. The Edith Bolling Wilson Birthplace Museum tells the story of a Wytheville daughter who married the 28th President of the United States, Woodrow Wilson. Her influential and controversial life is chronicled in artifacts from her childhood to her years in the nation’s capital. Several mansions dating to the 1800s also offered a historical glimpse into some of the first families of the region and their parts in the growth of Southwest Virginia. The legend and lore surrounding these locations offer many interesting stories about the area’s first affluent citizens.

Just a few minutes away is one of the region’s most unique attractions, Wolf Creek Indian Village & Museum.This village of wigwams was meticulously reconstructed to match the layout of a nearby excavation dating to 1215 A.D. Guides demonstrate the day-to-day living skills through the use of handmade replicas of tools and containers, hides, and various crafts. Tourism is a vital industry for the area with over 100 businesses that serve travelers throughout the

Wythe History…

year.This includes over 25 lodging accommodations from all-suite hotels to a luxury bed & breakfast, from rustic cabins to full-service campgrounds. Over 50 restaurants offer local flavor cuisine and nationally-recognized chains. In addition to the many historic attractions and abundance of outdoor recreation, there are a variety of things for visitors to see and do including theatre, music festivals, a 45-acre animal park and many others. See WYTHEVILLE page 78

Intersection I-81/I-77 in Southwest Virginia

Comes Adventure!

Visit our Blue Ridge Mountains steeped in history, surrounded by 58,000 acres of public lands with over 240 miles of trails and 20 miles of New River frontage for trophy fishing, hiking, biking, motorcycle trails, horseback trails and more. A visit to this small town offers authentic adventures… Wythe a historical touch!

Come discover it. Toll Free 1-877-347-8307

e l l i v e Wyth virginia

www.VisitWytheville.com


78 • THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013

Scott County Cont’d from page 76

is nearby and is considered to be the oldest standing building in Scott County. Other sites of interest include Osborne’s Ford and remains of Hagan Hall. Aside from the railroad museum and Natural Tunnel, rail buffs need to visit the Copper Creek Double Trestle, which dates from 1890 and 1908, and Swede Tunnel on the Guest River Gorge Trail, which dates from 1922. For a glimpse of an almost 70year railroad tradition, visit Scott County the weekend before Thanksgiving to see the Santa Train Special, sponsored by CSX Railroad and the Kingsport Chamber of Commerce. Each year the Santa Train Special travels 110-miles along the CSX track through the rolling hills and valleys of Southwest Virginia and coalfields of Kentucky to hand out toys at designated stops along the

route to the children of Appalachia. More than 15 tons of toys is distributed each year — toys that have donated from around the world.

Visit Nature More than 100 miles of the picturesque Clinch River winds its way through Scott County.The Clinch is recognized world-wide for containing the largest fresh-water mussel collection in the world. Rare and endangered species are abundant here; the Clinch sustains 48 imperiled and vulnerable animal species, including 29 varieties of rare freshwater mussels and 19 species of fish. Rare plants, mammals and birds thrive along the river’s edge.This concentration of rare animals makes the Clinch the number-one hot spot in the U.S. for imperiled aquatic species. The North Fork of the Holston also runs through Scott County. Both the Clinch and Holston are full of smallmouth, spotted, rocks

Virginia International Raceway South Boston Speedway Historic South Boston Town of Halifax South Boston County Museum The Prizery Cage’s Sculpture Farm Staunton River State Park Staunton River Battlefield State Park

Halifax County Department of Tourism 1180 Bill Tuck Hwy. • South Boston, VA 434-572-2543 • www.GoHalifaxVA.com

and largemouth bass, sauger, sunfish, musky, carp and freshwater drum. Between April 15 and May 31, the Clinch offers a unique fishing opportunity — sucker shooting. During this time, anglers climb high into the Sycamore trees and shoot the red horse suckers in the shallow waters along the shore. The 61-acre Bark Camp Lake offers a variety of fish, including largemouth bass, black crappie, several sunfish species, channel catfish and trout.The lake as well as Big and Little Stoney Creeks and Stock Creek are routinely stocked with trout by the Department of Game and Inland Fisheries. Nature enthusiasts will find Natural Tunnel State Park an outdoor lover’s dream.The park offers both camping sites and year-round cabin rentals. Summer is filled with activities for children and grown-ups alike.Take a hayride around the historic Fincastle Loop or learn a basic outdoor skill. Canoe and kayaking is also available on both the Clinch and Holston Rivers. For the extreme adventure kayaker, a ride down Little Stoney Creek will test paddling abilities — definitely not for the novice or faint of heart. Hiking and equestrian trails are abundant in Scott County.The county contains two sections of the Virginia Birding and Wildlife Trail.The county’s trail system offers an endless range of options — from a multi-day backpacking trip down the Chief Benge Scout Trail to half-hour jaunts from car to vista on the Bear Rock Trail.

Recreation Areas Scott County has several recre-

Remembering Their Valor, Fidelity and Sacrice Discover The National D-Day Memorial, overlooking the Blue Ridge Mountains and the town that lost the most citizens per-capita in the United States at D-Day. The Memorial honors the Americans and all of the Allied forces involved. Near The Memorial is Thomas Jefferson’s retreat Poplar Forest, the Blue Ridge Parkway, Smith Mountain Lake and the Booker T. Washington National Monument. Now Open Daily!

Bedford Welcome Center • Bedford, VA 877-447-3257 • www.visitbedford.com

Experience the

History Scenic Beauty

of the Shenandoah Valley

Battle of Cedar Creek Reenactment: Oct.19-20

Apple and Pumpkin Festivals: Sept. - Oct.

·

·

Civil War Attractions Day Trips to Washington, DC Museums & Family Funn Scan or Call for a FREE Guide (877) 871-1326

VisitWinchesterVA.com

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ational facilities, including municipal parks in various small towns. Horse lovers can find a horse show just about every weekend at the Scott County Regional Horse Park, located in Dungannon. For the kids, a trip to Creation Kingdom Zoo, an endangered species breeding zoo, is a must. Golfers will find one of the country’s most scenic golf courses at the Scott County Park and Golf Course. This scenic 18-hole golf course is both challenging and affordable to visitors.

Shopping and Dining Scott County also offers interesting shopping and unique dining experiences in its small towns. Gate City is the perfect stop for antique shopping and stop at the Family Bakery for the world’s best cupcake.There are many places in Scott County to find down home cooking, like the Front Porch Deli and Campus Drive-in. Authentic oldtime diners are real in Scott County, and include the Redstone, Hob-Nob and Teddy’s Restaurant. Elvis’ favorite, the fried Twinkie can be found at the Duffield Grille.There is even an authentic German restaurant and several Mexican restaurants in the county.

Accommodations Scott County offers mountain cabins, bed and breakfasts and local inns for overnight accommodations. A word of caution about a visit to Scott County:“Once you visit, you may never want to leave.” For more information: www.explorescottcountyva.com or 276-386-6521.

Wytheville Cont’d from page 77 A Great Place to Live Wytheville is an attractive, vibrant, and thriving community. Its success can be attributed, in part, to its strategic location at the crossroads of Interstates 77 and 81. It is known for its small town charm, clean appearance, broad streets and the welcoming and progressive attitude of its citizens and leadership. Throughout Wytheville and the surrounding county, you will find numerous neighborhoods with housing types ranging from modest single-family houses and multi-unit apartment complexes to large historic mansions and new subdivisions. Homes with multiple acres adjacent and large farms are also available. Local government’s recent investment in renovations to many of the public school facilities, as well as private schools and academies, provide a sound base for education.This is enhanced by the wide range of educational programs available at Wytheville Community College and nearby access to several four-year colleges and universities. As a well-known transportation crossroads, more than 50,000 travelers pass through each day. It is a key location for manufacturing and distribution and is home to world class manufacturing operations including Pepsi Bottling Group and Gatorade. Progress Park, the county’s 1,210-acre industrial park, is located near the intersecting interstates and provides key infrastructure, including rail and fiber optic telecommunications. This is just a glimpse into why so many visitors have chosen Wytheville as a destination for a long weekend, vacation, or as a place to relocate.The relaxing variety and hospitable spirit makes everyone feel at home. For more information contact the Wytheville Convention & Visitors Bureau, 877-347-8307, or visit http://www.VisitWytheville.com.


TRAVEL USA

Special Advertising Supplement

THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013 • 79

Pearland is the perfect pick to stay, play, getaway

...for Rest & Relaxation Proximity

Between Galveston and Houston

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11 Hotels, 140 Restaurants, Family Friendly

Plenty to Do

Bike, Hike, and Nearby Sites, Beach, Boardwalk, Zoo,Waterpark, Etc.

Get your FREE Map!

A Military-Friendly Travel Destination

Pearland Convention & Visitors Bureau / Visitpearland.com / pearlandcvb@ci.pearland.tx.us / 281.605.9461

For thousands of years life's daily drama has been performed at Palo Duro Canyon State Park. Come get your rim full anytime.

Perfectly placed in the Gulf Coast Region of Texas and within 10 miles from downtown Houston and Hobby Airport, this fast growing city has transitioned from a roadside stop on Texas 288 (Off I-10) to a suburban destination in Brazoria County “Where Texas Began,” with Stephan F. Austin’s original 300 settlers. Pearland provides a quiet respite from the hustle and bustle of the big city, but with metropolitan amenities and sites to see just minutes away. Plentiful pickings in Pearland with 11 hotels, 140 restaurants providing travelers a distinctive international experience and an open-air lifestyle shopping center, the Pearland Town Center, that includes; high-end retailers, specialty shops, fine dining and entertainment along with Bass Pro Shops 150,000 sq. ft. playground consisting of 3,500 area artifacts, antiques, pictures, mounts and memorabilia, the store becomes a living museum of Texas’ hunting, fishing, camping and other outdoor legacies.Then go antiquing at Brows Around and Cole’s Antique Village and Market — open weekends. Plenty more to do with numerous sports and special events, which annually include: • Winterfest (January)

•P  aws in the Park (March) •P  earland Crawfish Festival (April) •C  lassic Basketball tournament (April) • The Adams Pro Series Golf Tournament (April) •G  reat American Shootout (June) •C  elebrate Freedom and Fireworks (July) • Volleyball Classic (August) • I nternational Festival (Sept) •R  ed Cat Jazz Fest (Oct) •H  ometown Christmas Festival and Parade (Dec). Proximity permits you to experience a Hindu Temple, Sri Meenakshi*; play a round of golf, miniature golf or golf disc, enjoy local theatre performances, relax with spa treatments, picnic in our parks, bike and hike. As well as visiting a nearby space museum, beach, boardwalk, zoo and downtown city, when day tripping to downtown Houston (10 miles), Johnson Space Center (16 miles), Kemah Boardwalk (20 miles) and Galveston (30 miles). Planning a getaway weekend is easy when you Pick Pearland as the place to stay and do it all! For more information visit www.visitpearland.com.

An Amarillo Sky

AMARI

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Escape... to Rest, Relax and Recuperate in Lewisville, Texas

Plan Your Escape to Lewisville

Lewisville is the perfect setting to recreate, rejuvenate, and rekindle your dreams.

Dining • More than 250 Restaurants Family Fun • 10 Family Attractions Shopping • Antiques to Boutiques Nature • 26,000-acre Lewisville Lake

plus a 2,000-acre wildlife preserve

Accommodations • Choose from 22 hotels at VisitLewisville.com

Location • On 1-35E, 10 min. from DFW Airport, 20 min. from Dallas, 40 min. from Ft.Worth Call 800.657.9571 for your Free “Military Thank You Package” with local discounts!

800.657.9571 • VisitLewisville.com


80 • THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013

www.thegriffon108.com

TRAVEL USA

Fall in North Texas: Family fun and relaxation By Beth Shumate  ommuncations Manager C McKinney Convention & Visitors Bureau

When it comes to rest and relaxation, the City of McKinney — 30 miles north of Dallas and 50 miles south of the Red River — does it in style and with plenty of excitement to boot. Active duty and retired military personnel looking for a comfortable and quaint place for a fun weekend getaway with that special someone, friends or the family will find plenty to do throughout McKinney. The fall months in this quaint historic community are especially festive and fun, with offerings including big annual events like Ok-

toberfest, the Spirit of the Cowboy Festival, Dinosaurs Live — fun for all ages — the Legends of McKinney Ghostwalk and the community Christmas festival, held on Thanksgiving weekend. Add to the mix an always heartwarming and respectful Veteran’s Day tribute at the McKinney Veterans Memorial Park, and new this year, the Commemorative Air Force Airpower Tour, coming to McKinney in early October. And of course, there are regular seasonal and yearround events to enjoy any time you visit.

September Features Beer, Brats, and Dinosaurs Anyone who hasn’t attended Ok-

downtown on Halloween aftertoberfest in McKinney will marvel at the Bavarian atmosphere the city noon — and the ever-popular Legends of McKinney Ghost Walk. creates on the downtown square. Non-ghostbusting activities includGerman delicacies, costumes and ing the Spirit of the Cowboy Fesgifts, and live polka and oomtival and Commemorative Air pha music liven up the audiences Force Airpower Tour help round throughout the days and evenings of the two-day event. Local Bavarian out the month of October. During the Ghost Walk, visitors brewery Franconia Brewing proenjoy a self-guided tour —with the vides a variety of beer and lagers for the festival that also includes a parade of a flags, keg tapping, and lots of traditional dancing. There’s fun for the entire family here, too, with kids’ activities, weenie-dog races, and a German car show. The event is Friday, Sept. 27 (4-11 p.m.) and Saturday, Sept. 28 (10 a.m.-11 p.m.) on the historic downtown square. (972547-2660; downtownmckinney.com) September also ushers in the annual fall-to-winter visit of the 46-foot moving, roaring T-Rex and eight of his closest robotic friends to the Celebrities from old Western TV shows and movies provide a nosHeard Natural Scitalgic tone to the cowboy-themed Spirit of the Cowboy Festival in ence Museum and McKinney in October. Wildlife Sanctuary. Photo courtesy McKinney Convention & Visitors Bureau The Dinosaurs Live outdoor exhibit, making its help of their event-ticket program 8th annual visit to the Heard in — where they’ll meet up with a 2013, thrills kids and adults alike, storyteller at each stop. Guests providing educational opportunities as well as fun dinosaur hunting will hear stories about members of an early McKinney family who along the 6.5 miles of nature trails still walk the halls of the homes at on the 289-acre wildlife sanctuary. Chestnut Square, the Lady in White This popular exhibit runs Sept. 14 who died in the historic courtthrough Feb. 2. (972-562-5566; house — now the McKinney Perheardmuseum.org) forming Arts Center — and other ghostly legends in and around October Offers Bronco-Busting McKinney’s historic district. And and Ghost Hunting those needing a break during the The month of October is always tour can always stop for dinner or a filled with spooky fun, from hauntglass of wine along the way. ed carriage ride tours of the hisThe Legends of McKinney Ghost Walk toric district, Scare on the Square is held the last two Saturdays of Octofor little trick-or-treaters — held


TRAVEL USA ber (Oct. 19 and 26). Haunted tours are available at Chestnut Square Historic Village the third Saturday of every month. (972-562-8790; chestnutsquare.org) Haunted tours by horse-drawn carriage are by reservation only through Happy Trails Carriage Rides. (214-6626705; happytrailscarriage.com) Relive the nostalgic days of the TV western and cowboy movies at the Spirit of the Cowboy Festival set for Oct. 11-13, also at Chestnut Square Historic Village. Event organizers pride themselves on honoring and preserving the values and culture of the cowboy way of life through this festival where visitors will enjoy music, dancing and schmoozing with actors from the glory days of westerns including TV’s “Wagon Train,”“Laramie,”“Stagecoach,”“The Virginian,”“Big Valley,”“F-Troop,”“Gunsmoke,”“Death Valley Days,” more recent shows like “Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman,” “Walker,Texas Ranger,” and movies including “Silverado,”“Roadhouse,” and “Blazing Saddles.”Westernthemed activities will amuse kids, while the whole family can talk to real cowboys and take stagecoach rides around the event area. Catch an old TV show or movie shown in the little white chapel between the popular question-and-answer story times with the celebrities. A special VIP dinner on Friday night allows guests to win a place at the dinner table with the celebrity of their choice, too! A list of celebrities, ticket information and entertainment schedule are available at the event website. (972-562-8790; spiritofthecowboy.net) A first-time event to McKinney early in the month (Oct. 3-6) will bring a wide variety of historic war birds to the Collin County Regional Airport for the Commemorative Air Force Airpower Tour, making a stop in McKinney as it travels the country.Take a tour of aircraft such as the B-29, B-17, B-24, C-45, B-25, Douglas R4D, PT-17 Stearman, A-26, P-51 Mustang, Corsair, FM-2 Wildcat, among others. Paid rides will also be available on select planes. Event activities include a family festival with dinner, movie night and music taking place in the evenings. Veterans and Active Duty attending the event will enjoy discounted tickets as well as a Free Admission day on Friday. 888649-8499; commemorativeairforce.org.

November is for Veterans and Families Veterans Day 2011 marked the dedication of McKinney’s Veterans Memorial Park.This special day of remembrance and tribute continues each year with a ceremony honoring those who have and continue to serve our country through the various branches of the U.S. Armed Forces.The city hosts morning and sundown ceremonies at the park, located at 6053 Weiskopf Avenue in McKinney’s Craig Ranch Development.The park monument features a water fountain, flag

THE GRIFFON • Fall 2013 • 81

Special Advertising Supplement and Wall of Honor inscribed with names of all Collin County servicemen and women who sacrificed their lives in defense of our freedom. Check the city’s website for the ceremony schedule. (972-547-7480; www. mckinneytexas.org/veteransmemorial) Rounding out November is a family-oriented event kicking off the holiday season with nostalgia befitting this quaint community. Previously called “Dickens of a Christmas,” the event is relaunching this year as “Home for the Holidays,” with family activities including a community tree lighting ceremony, live entertainment, train rides, visits with Santa, the Believe Run 1 Mile, 5K and 10K races, and plenty of other holiday fun. The Thanksgiving weekend event is free to all. (972-547-2660; www.downtownmckinney.com)

Victoria Ballet

Victoria welcomes the U.S. Army as a military friendly travel destination. With a variety of outdoor recreational activities nearby, Victoria is an ideal destination for R&R. Located between Houston and Corpus Christi, Victoria offers a perfect getaway. Enjoy events, museums & outdoor fun. Bootfest

Cemetery Tour

Victoria Symphony

800.926.5774  www.VisitVictoriaTexas.com

Other Fall Fun Aside from the bigger festivals, visitors to McKinney can enjoy activities like: • The weekly Farmers Market at Chestnut Square —voted the best for its size in the country — on Saturdays from 8 a.m.noon through mid-October • The monthly Third Monday Trade Days flea market and Old Red Lumberyard vintage and junk market •H  igh Noon on the Courthouse Lawn — live entertainment on Fridays at noon in the center of the downtown square. • An assortment of concerts, plays and comedy shows at the McKinney Performing Arts Center; • L ive music in most of the downtown restaurants and wineries on weekend nights (Thurs.-Sat.). The McKinney Convention and Visitors Bureau is always available to answer questions about all the city has to offer. Call 888-649-8499 or ve-mail to info@ visitmckinney.com.

We Welcome All Military Personnel for R&R Make your reservations online at: www.BiloxiBeachResortRentals.com or call today 888-748-2228 We accept all TAD/TDY and Per Diem Rates

Stay in Biloxi’s Best Beachfront Condos!

Beau View Legacy Towers

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Ocean Club

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ADVERTISER INDEX 84 Lumber Advanced Technology Institute Alamogordo,NM. CVB All South Federal Credit Union Alleghany Highlands CVB Amarillo,TX. CVB American Health Information Management Association American Medical Technologists Apologia Ashford University Avis Ball State University Bedford, VA. Tourism Berkley County CVB Billy Graham Library Biloxi Beach Resort Rentals Bok Tower Gardens Boulder Designs Butler County, PA. CVB

12 5 72 9 75 79 51 58 59 27 10 84 78 70 68 81 64 56 73

Cape Fear Museum Capitol College CDA Technical Institute CDL Schools Cedar Hil,TX. CVB Chadron State College Charleston County Parks & Recreation Commission City of Kings Mountain Clarion Inn & Suites Gatlinburg Clay County,FL. CVB Clinton County,PA. CVB Codesmart University Comfort Inn & Suites- Three Rivers Corban University Correct Care Solutions County of Kent,MD. Drexel E.W. Wylie Corporation Edgewater Hotel

67 54 24 13 81 17 71 69 73 65 73 56 62 14 52 82 5 50 72

Ready For R & R?

Try Maryland’s Upper Eastern Shore on The Chesapeake Bay.

County of Kent

Explore the Historic Towns of Chestertown, Rock Hall, Betterton, Galena, Millington Fishing, Kayaking, Music, Museums, Art Galleries, Theatres, Small Beaches, Boutique Shopping, Farmers’ Welcome U.S. Army! Markets www.kentcounty.com and More

Enchanted Mountains of New York Everglades University Fisherman’s Finest Flag and Banner Florida A&M Franklin County, VA. CVB Fripp Island Resort Front Royal CVB Gannon University Garrett County, MD. CVB Geico GEO Group Georgia Military College Georgian Court University Great Smoky Mountain Railroad Greater Valley Area,AL. CVB Griffith University Gulf Shores and Orange Beach Tourism Halifax County CVB Harlingen, TX. CVB Harrisburg Area Community College Heald College Heart of NC Hiwassee College Holiday Inn Express & Suites Home School Foundation Honeybaked Ham Company Howard Johnson Plaza Altamonte Springs, FL. Hungry Howie’s Pizza Indian River County,FL. CVB Isla Grand Beach Resort Lee County, FL, CVB Lewisville,TX. CVB McKinney, TX. CVB Mercyhurst Montgomery County, VA. CVB NASM National Aviation Academy Navy Federal Credit Union Neumann University New York Institute of Technology Niagara University North Carolina A&T University North Carolina Central University North Myrtle Beach Chamber Nova Southeastern University Ohio Christian University OmniTrax Oswego County, NY. CVB

74 47 37 3 37 77 71 76 39 82 15 17 9 33 67 60 16 61 78 81 18 35 53 57 60 58 25 64 21 65 80 65 79 80 8 77 50 38 44 25 52 39 31 26 70 55 36 29 74

Palo Alto University Patriots Point Pearland, TX. CVB Peppertree Ocean Club Petersons Pooler, GA. CVB Putnam County Tourism Rosemont Rosen Hotels & Resorts Russell County,AL. CVB Scott County, VA. CVB Seminole County, FL. CVB Sequoia Foothills CVB Sevierville,TN. CVB SIT Graduate Institute South Dakota State University Southwest University St. Francis College State Farm Insurance Sterling College Stevens-Henager College Sullivan University The College Board The Helendorf River Inn The Island House Hotel The Ocean Corportation The Westin La Cantera Hill Country Resort Tiffin University TMC Transport Town of Mount Pleasant, SC. Trine University Tupelo CVB University of South Carolina Universal Orlando University of Alabama University of Mary University of North Dakota USAA Victoria,TX. CVB Virginia Zoo Visit Central Florida Visit Gainesville Visit Joplin, MO. Wayne County NY Tourism Wayne County OH CVB Western Carolina University Western Governers University Wet ‘n’ Wild Winchester-Frederick County CVB Wytheville, VA CVB

3 69 79 70 58 63 74 13 66 61 76 65 62 73 16 42 18 31 20 29 57 2 42 62 60 38 80 19 54 68 37 82 33 66 32 7 7 11 81 75 64 65 82 72 74 41 83 66 78 77


WANTED: EARLY RISERS. MASTERS OF SELF-DISCIPLINE. WILLING TO GO THE EXTRA MILE. WGU offers bachelor’s and master’s degree programs in business, information technology, teaching, and health professions—all approved for education benefits by the Department of Veterans Affairs under the Montgomery GI Bill. Our programs are designed to fit your busy life no matter where you may be in the world. While already modestly priced, tuition, along with fees and books, is eligible for full benefit coverage. We’re online, accredited, and affordable, and we’re seeking students who are driven to succeed.

wgu.edu/griffon108

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BALL STATE+ONLINE Our online programs rank among the best for veterans, according to U.S. News. What’s so great about Ball State for men and women of the military? n U.S. News & World Report ranks our online • undergraduate programs and our online graduate business and graduate education programs each No. 8, and our online graduate nursing programs No. 12 in its list of Best Online Programs for Veterans. n You’ll find competitive tuition rates and • financial aid assistance from the GI Bill, Yellow Ribbon Program, and others. n You can take advantage of one-on-one • academic advising from mentors who are glad to support active military, veterans, spouses, and families. n You can choose from more than 60 online • undergraduate and graduate programs.

To learn more about our many online options, visit www.bsu.edu/online.

CUSTOMER SERVICE FOR STUDENTS Monica Spahr had her sights set on a life path that led to a bachelor’s in nursing. However, she was also raising three children, working full time as an operating room manager at a hospital in Fort Wayne, Ind., and completing a yearly assignment as an Army captain nurse for the U.S. Army Reserves at an active-duty hospital in Hawaii. But thanks to Ball State’s registered nurse to bachelor of science in nursing completion track that was fully online and a university that lived up to its “military-friendly” classification, Spahr prevailed. “I had one year when my community service hours were going to be due while I was on active duty at my Army hospital,” she says. “But my instructor was flexible and allowed me to complete my clinical time during non-duty hours in Hawaii.” Spahr, who graduated in 2011, appreciated the customer service provided by Ball State’s professional staff. “I was always able to get a quick answer to my questions,” she says.

©

Griffon autumn 2013  

The 108 Griffon Autumn 2013 issue

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