In Honor of Veteran’s Day, A Salute To Our Veterans

November 11th, 2019 by The Franchise Development Team

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This Veteran’s Day we would like to honor all who served to help protect our country.  Additionally, we are proud to have several veterans working with us at GSI. We sat down with three veterans, IT operations lead, Tom; application analyst, Lorrie and editor, Jim who shared their experiences with us.

Jim served in the 417th and the 421st Tactical Fighter Squadrons in the United States Air Force in the Vietnam War from 1972 to 1975. Growing up, Jim’s mother was a medical illustrator for the United States Navy Air and Space program. She brought home colorful aerospace magazines for Jim to read. This sparked curiosity and a dream of flying in him. When he was 26 years old, he was drafted to serve in the United States Army, but Jim opted to join the United States Air Force instead to fulfill his dream of flying jet aircraft. After completing flight school and many rigorous training courses in the CONUS, Jim’s service allowed him to travel all over Europe and Asia including living in Spain for four years, as well as living on and off in Viet Nam, Thailand, Turkey, Germany, England, Greece and Italy.

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After serving in the United States Air Force, Jim joined the United States Civil Air Patrol and became a squadron commander. For 20 years, he used his passion for flying to assist in counter-narcotics missions, to help rescue victims of hurricanes and other natural disasters and to give flying training to cadets. He described his overall experience as exciting and attributes his good health to the habits he learned in the military.

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Tom enlisted in the United States Air Force; he was on active duty from 2007 to 2010. During his time on active duty, he was stationed in Tucson, AZ at Davis Monthan Air Force Base and assigned to the 55 Rescue Squadron. Their mission was Combat Search and Rescue, which meant they were worldwide deployable within 24 hours regardless of time, weather conditions or hostile threats. Tom’s role was to run the operations to ensure the aircrew and the helicopters were able to carry out this mission. While stationed stateside, he supported the country with search and rescue events, such as supporting Hurricane Gustavo where we saved 27 lives.

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In 2009, he was deployed to Iraq, where he supported the special forces as the taxi to get them in and out of their missions. In the second half of 2009, he was deployed to Afghanistan, where he served as a combat medevac which saved 475 lives and brought home 10 KIA. Upon returning home, Tom was accepted into the Palace Chase program. This program allows active-duty enlisted members to complete the remainder of their initial contract in the Air National Guard or Air Force Reserves. From 2010 to 2013, he was enlisted in the New Jersey Air National Guard and assigned to the 177th Fighter Wing. During his time there, he provided support to Jersey City, NJ during and after Hurricane Sandy.

Lorrie served in the United States Navy on active duty for five years during the Gulf War. She was an IT technician at the Navy Management Systems Support Office (NAVMASSO) stationed at the Naval Air Station in Norfolk VA. NAVMASSO’s mission was to design all non-tactical software for the entire Naval fleet. Lorrie continued to serve for nine more years in the Naval Reserve as an explosive ordinance handler at the Naval Weapons Station in Earle, NJ. During her time in the Navy, she was awarded several medals and ribbons, including two Good Conduct Medals, the Meritorious Unit Commendation, the Navy Reserve and National Defense Service Medals and two Sharpshooter ribbons.

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At Goddard Systems, Inc., we are forever grateful for the veterans whose work ensures not only our freedom, but the future for our children. This Veteran’s Day, take time to thank the men and women who have served and are still serving, for their bravery and sacrifice. We’d like to thank Jim, Lorrie and Tom, – and all veterans – for their service to our country and GSI!

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