Getting out without a gameplan, (other than to have weekends off, and to make the big civilian bucks
----HAAAAAAAAAAAAA!! Still ain't happened!) was a major mistake!!! Miss my brothers dearly to this day, and not a day goes by where I don't use the Ranger Creed as a personal guide.
Had a viciously difficult time integrating into civilian life, trying to find a job in the shitty market of '81. Being the posterchild for 'Don't be a Drunk Driver' certainly didn't help...3 crushed vertebra...2 steel rods...all pretty much closed the door on the possible return option for me!
I recently went to a C CO Reunion, and met guys that I haven't seen in 24 years, and it was MAGICAL--like we had never been apart! It was a great reminder of what a special unit, special time, and monumentally special people that I had the priviledge to know! I feel HONORED to be counted as a friend to these magnificent guys! THAT IS WHAT YOU WILL NEVER FIND IN CIVILIAN LIFE!! (Notice this thread in almost every reply?!)
I stopped playing the "What if..." game a long time ago. It solves nothing. I am very happy in my station in life, and with my family. I used to think that Rangering was the only thing that I was good at, however, somehow I seem to be a fairly good paramedic. I probably would have stayed in had I been taken aside by someone that sat me down and gave me the real facts of life...not some Re-up NCO looking to make a quota. In fact, at the reunion I was asked by a career SFOD/SF guy why I DID get out, because I ate that shit up more than anyone they knew! I can't answer the question for anyone but me. Just as you all know that being a Ranger isn't for everybody! In retrospect, I suppose I should have stayed in, and just slid over to the SF side of things as a change--I was burned out, and angry. Seems foolish, but there it is!