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Old 06-17-2012, 09:51 PM   #1
HOGFAN
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son just joined Air Force and...

Im proud and scared poopless at the same time....He leaves in Sept for San Antonio....any tips or things he might need to be prepared for is appreciated..tnx
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Old 06-18-2012, 08:24 PM   #2
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I went to basic in Sept, way back in 1984 lol. From what I remember, it was hot and humid. We did PT early morning, think 5 am, before breakfast. If it rained they made us run in place under the overhangs in front of the dorms. Talk about looking stupid lol. I'm sure things have changed since then, but I remember it being extremely boring. I was on delayed enlistment, I finished college before going to basic, so I was one of the oldest recruits. It was hurry up and go here, great, we're early, now wait until somebody decides to tell us to do something. The AF motto has always been hurry up and wait lol. I remember they made us drink 2 glasses of water before we could have anything else to drink, to help avoid dehydration. Tell your son no matter what, DO NOT lock your knees while standing in place. I'm really curious about how basic has changed over the years. There were no cell phones and atm cards were a new thing back then. We all brought rolls of quarters to call home from the pay phones outside the dorms lol.
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Old 06-18-2012, 11:48 PM   #3
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His recruiter will give him a list of what he needs to bring with him. It should not be much because he will be taken to buy all the essentials in the first few days. The first few days are the worst then it turns in to more of a routine. I remember the first night we spent at least an hour working on getting our shoes laced the right way. Yes, there were many boring hours of doing the same thing over and over. Things like cell phones will be locked up until the very end. A few days after he gets there he will be allowed a quick phone call to give you his address. We got a few opportunities to call and write home but not until probably the 3rd week.

If you are coming down to see him graduate and you have any questions about the base or San Antonio let me know, we live here now and I would be more than happy to answer any questions about the city.
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Old 06-19-2012, 07:34 PM   #4
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I can second the "hurry up and wait" mentality of the AF. And that's your whole career, not just BMT, lol.

Also, the new(er) version of Basic is supposed to be a lot different than the previous one. It's two weeks longer now than it used to be, and from everything i've been told most of the detail oriented things (like spending hours learning how to properly roll your shirt) has been done away with in favor of more combat oriented training.

As mentioned, his recruiter will (if he/she hasn't already) provide him with a list of what he needs, what is approved, and what is not allowed. Things like cell phones can be brought, but will be locked up. Calling cards are a good idea, as pay phones are available throughout the process. When my ExH went through, he called me once a week, and wrote about as often. That sort of thing all depends on his TI and how his flight is progressing/behaving. Letters and phone calls are a privilege there. If you get a tough TI, you may not be allowed, or if something happens with your flight they may be taken away.

Everyone i've ever talked to has said it wasn't as bad as they thought, and most of them said they ended up enjoying it a few weeks in.

Near the end of Basic, he'll get his job and orders to his station for Tech School. There is no break in between the two, he will be sent straight from Lackland to his school location.
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Old 06-20-2012, 09:27 AM   #5
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I see you're already getting lots good advise . Just want to say Congrats to your son and wish him good luck! You must be very proud he is responsibly taking on such a commitment to serve our country . Kudos to him!

I know several members of the AF and hear it's is one of the best technically advanced services to join now w/lots of opportunities for advancement and education. My DH enjoyed his AF days, however DS decided Army like his Grandpop ~ heart, mind, body and soul ~ he's an officer hoping to retire in couple yrs.

I remember being so anxious for my young son when he joined . However, upon attending his basic graduation, I soon realized, altho he left a boy he'd become a very proud soldier! I'm sure your DS will do well! Godspeed him
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Old 06-20-2012, 04:10 PM   #6
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My DS at this time last year was waiting to go to basics in November. I cried a lot and spent a lot of time with him (in between him working and all the time he was spending with his now fiancee ).



Anyway...........he went off to basics which now he says was not bad at all and in which he has great memories. We're talking "boot camp" here!!

Training in Biloxi was very very tough. And please believe me when I say I'm not bragging but DS and 8 others were the only ones to graduate (out of 28) from control tower training this April! He had to study A LOT!!

He is now stationed in Altus AFB, OK and will only be coming back up here when he marries his sweetheart next March.

My biggest advice to you that was given to me by a former Air Force mom........go to graduation in San Antonio!!!! It was one of the coolest trips I've ever been on!!! To watch those kids graduate is really something!! Talk about proud moments!


PM me any time!

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Old 07-06-2012, 02:50 PM   #7
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Like stm61, I went to Air Force basic training quite a while ago (1989). I have heard things are different now, so I don't have much advice for him.

DS joined the Navy two years ago. I went through a lot of emotions as a mom, that's for sure. The Navy has a website specifically for moms and that community was a blessing. I spent everyday on there from the time he left for boot camp up and beyond graduation. I'm not sure if the Air Force has something similar, but it might be worth checking out.

And a big thank you to your son for signing up to serve his country.
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Old 07-15-2012, 11:28 AM   #8
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DS graduated from boot camp at Lackland four years ago this October 10th. I'm sitting here at my desk looking at a gift he gave me at graduation that has the date on it He didn't really think basic was all that difficult and even graduated with Honors...

He was very lucky to do his tech school (EOD) at Eglin in Florida, supposedly the Taj Mahal of bases He was there for a year but didn't make it through to EOD graduation after many, many attempts. Can't say that wasn't bittersweet though from my pov.

He just arrived home two weeks ago from Misawa, Japan where he worked in cyberspace security. He spent a little more than two years there. He liked some of it, especially the snowboarding mountain access. As luck would have it, he deployed one week before the Tsunami, again a blessing in disguise.

He will now report to DC on July 31st for another job assignment. He reupped to 8 years in order to get this four year contracted position. He is thriving in the Air Force...I can easily say this is the best decision we/he EVER MADE!

Good luck to your son and family
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Old 07-23-2012, 09:09 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stm61 View Post
I went to basic in Sept, way back in 1984.
I was there in April of that year -- hot, hot, HOT!

To OP: Congrats to your son, and yes, he did pick the best branch of service!
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Old 08-02-2012, 12:56 PM   #10
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My son just completed his MEPs today and is also going to Lackland in September! I'm new to the military thing since no one around me (aside from my WW2 grandfathers) ever served. My son just looked at his college debt and said "I need help finishing this out, plus I want to pick a really interesting career path and also serve my country." It was a very educated decision for him, and I am very proud. "Aim High....Fly, Fight, Win!".
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Old 08-03-2012, 12:27 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mulder3 View Post
My son just completed his MEPs today and is also going to Lackland in September! I'm new to the military thing since no one around me (aside from my WW2 grandfathers) ever served. My son just looked at his college debt and said "I need help finishing this out, plus I want to pick a really interesting career path and also serve my country." It was a very educated decision for him, and I am very proud. "Aim High....Fly, Fight, Win!".
The loan re-payment plan is great, if that is what he is thinking of choosing. I know a few people who chose it over the GI Bill and it worked out great for them and their families. One guy I know enlisted for 4 years with college debt, had the Air Force pay his loans while he was in and used Tuition Assistance to work on his Master's degree. Very smart guy all around.

My only regret is I didn't take more advantage of the education benefits while I was in. I did take enough classes to earn my Associate's from the Community College of the Air Force and one from the Defense Language Institute. My plan was always to use my GI Bill when I got out. Now that I am out and I am looking at my degree audit kicking myself thinking I could have so much more done if I had only taken a few more classes. Thankfully I will be able to use my GI Bill to finish my Bachelor's and at least most of, if not all of, my Master degrees.
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Old 08-04-2012, 03:30 PM   #12
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My youngest brother joined the Navy about 10 years ago and it's the best thing he has ever done! It completely changed his life-now he does incredible things-I don't even want to hear what he does half the time-most of the time he can't tell me anyway. We are proud of him and worry about him but feel that he is serving his country well. Congrats on your son!
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