Scratch the Surface, You’ll Find a Nerd

By August 21, 2011Comms

A lot of people asked me why, of all the services out there, I picked the Coast Guard.

Admiral Thad Allen, one of the main reasons I joined the Coast Guard

Anyone who knows me would have guessed I’d be a shoe-in for the Marines. Nothing against those guys. When I want something utterly obliterated as quickly as possible, they’re my first pick.

When I made the decision to join up, I did my research. One of the things I made sure to do was read bios and interviews of the chief of each of the 5 armed services. In the course of that, I came across this article in the Washingtonian about our Commandant at the time, Admiral Thad Allen.  Many of you who aren’t familiar with the guard may know “the Thadmiral” from his role as the National Incident Commander for the Deepwater Horizon oil spill a few years back. I was called up for that and on duty when Admiral Allen changed his blue suit for a black one, retired from the guard and continued overseeing the response as a civilian.

I was pretty impressed by all the service commanders, and still trying to decide which service to join, until I came across this bit from Admiral Allen’s interview:

When asked what his favorite movie was, Admiral Allen responded “We really liked the Lord of the Rings trilogy, and my wife is a big Harry Potter fan.”

And at that moment, my course was set. Because like knows like, and if I’m going to follow someone into hell, I want it to be someone who understands the importance of hope when you’re trying to get a ring of power into a volcano with the combined might of Barad-Dur and Orthanc between you and the goal.

I’ve made a couple of really smart moves in my life. The guard is among the smartest of them. Admiral Papp is a great leader and I’m proud to serve under him. But the Thadmiral will always be the Commandant in my heart, a fellow fantasy dork and Coast Guard, another candle in the darkness. Fair winds and following seas, sir.

Author Myke Cole

Myke Cole is an American writer of history and fantasy who leverages a lifetime in military, law enforcement and intelligence service to take you to battlefields, real and imagined.

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