Commentary by Airman 1st Class Seth Smith
11th Space Warning Squadron
There are many military members who have their own personal reasons why they wear the uniform. No matter what anyone’s motivation might be, we all can relate in some way, shape or form. My beliefs and past situations have led me to be a military member for the recognition, tradition and to have a better life.
No matter where I go in uniform, people recognize that I am willing to serve my country. It symbolizes that I am a disciplined service member with the right training to do anything and everything that is asked of me. While I was still wearing my uniform, my wife and I were walking into a store, when I heard a little boy thank me for keeping him safe every day. Whether you have been deployed or not, a saying like that lets you know we are appreciated.
The uniform distinguishes you from any other country. It also tells others that you are an American Airman. Every morning when I wake up, I remember my basic military training. A neat, clean uniform shows that you are approachable and you respect the image of an Airman. My grandfather was in the Air Force. When I was little, he would show me pictures of himself in uniform, and the letters he wrote home. This showed me the dedication and pride my grandfather had while serving his country. I admired my grandfather so much I decided to make the Air Force my dream too.
The benefits received from the military create a better life for me. Before I decided to join, I graduated high school and could not afford college. I experienced firsthand the difficulties of every day labor that many men and women endure throughout their whole lives. I went from being a construction worker, to an electrician to being unemployed. With the way our economy is, a person without a college education would have to work countless hours and struggle week after week, living from paycheck to paycheck. I would have never been able to get married and afford a life for my family. In my hometown, no one was motivated enough to step up and commit to anything major. I didn’t want to end up that way, so I changed for the better and decided to wear this uniform.
Wearing my uniform everyday reminds me to keep integrity first, practice service before self and be excellent in all I do. When I am in my uniform, I know I am not just an average person. I uphold tradition, defend freedom and provide a better life for my family while wearing the Air Force uniform.
Congratulations to the following graduates of the Schriever First Term Airmen Center:
Airman 1st Class Austin Crouch, 4th Space Operations Squadron
Airman 1st Class Gladys Pope, 14th Air Force
Airman 1st Class Seth Smith, 11th Space Warning Squadron
Airman 1st Class Alexandra Truelove, 50th Space Wing
Airman 1st Class Mark Wallace, 4 SOPS, Diamond Sharp Troop Award
Airman 1st Class Karl Walter, 3 SOPS