Monday is the big day for our older daughter — and the whole family

Well, Autumn’s big day is coming: her recruiter is coming tomorrow at 1100 to pick her up for transport to the Harrisburg Military Entrance Processing Station. We had thought this would occur on the 20th, but her actual processing starts early on the 20th, so the Army is transporting her up on the 19th. As it happens, I had a couple of vacation days to use, and I took off tomorrow and Tuesday, so the change won’t be a problem for me.

After processing, she’ll be on a plane to Fort Jackson, South Carolina, for nine weeks of basic training.

For her last weekend at home, she naturally got special treatment, though Al Gore the weather interfered with some plans. She was supposed to get her meals of choice — corned beef and cabbage on Saturday and a Japanese restaurant today — but the latter fell through. The corned beef and cabbage went off without a problem, but she wanted to go snow tubing at Big Boulder today, so we went right after Mass. We had 1½” of snow overnight, but the snow had stopped, supposedly for a while, by morning.

I wish that I had a job where I didn’t have to be right any more often than the weathermen! It started snowing just as we got to Big Boulder, and snowed the whole time we were there. It wasn’t that heavy, but we got a fresh inch of snow in 2½ hours. The trip back to Jim Thorpe, down state highway 903, was a bit of an adventure. Naturally, there were a few last-minute purchases that had to be made, so we headed straight to WalMart, but no trip to Allentown for Japanese! :(

So, she leaves in about 14½ hours for the biggest, hardest test of her life. We’re all really proud of her.


  1. Been there, done that. Went to Basic at Fort Knox in Oct. 1969. The most appropriate thing that happened after arrival, we got our uniforms on Hallowe’en. Salute your daughter for me from a former E-6 and Army Civilian!

  2. All the best to Autumn and to your entire family. Good choice of timing on her part. South Carolina in February and March is much preferable to being there in July and August.

    God bless all of you.

  3. A big thank you from me too. Been there, done that myself, at Fort Jackson as well. Up on Tank Hill where Elvis was, but I think they’ve closed it down by now. I was there 20 years ago. Tell her to watch out for the red dirt. It gets into everything!

  4. Best wishes and heartfelt prayers for your Autumn, and for mom and dad who will also surely need them. What an honorable young woman. We need more of them.

  5. You should be very proud. I can’t imagine your feelings at this time.

    Godspeed to your daughter. I am certain she will you and all of us proud.

  6. If the Army or the Navy ever look on Heaven’s scene
    They will find the gates are guarded by UNITED STATES MARINES!!


    But, yeah, if I ever meet anyone in a US military uniform at an airport bar or restaurant, that person’s money will not be good there as long as I am there. I’ve done it before, I’ll do it again.

  7. Godspeed Miss Pico. I hope that she gets a MOS that gives her a good technical education and keeps her out of harms way.

    Thank you Autumn.

  8. Gort: She’s already attached to a reserve engineering battalion; she’s enlisted in the Army Reserve, not the regular Army. After basic and AIT, she’ll return to college, continuing pursuit of her degree in engineering. With ROTC, she’ll earn a commission upon graduation, and owe four years of active duty. In this way, she’ll receive her reserve pay, the Montgomery GI Bill and the ROTC stipend, so she’ll be graduated with a job, with a commission, and no student loans hanging over her head.

    Of course, I’m not entirely sure that engineering is the right field for her; she seems to like blowing things up more than buildingthem!

  9. Congratulations and a hearty thank your family and your daughter! I remember going off to basic – very exciting. The Army was good for me although there were times that I hated it. God bless and all the best to you all.

  10. Hey – new reader here, and a USMC Vet. My thanks to you & your daughter – here’s hoping she stays safe throughout her enlistment!

  11. Well, about now she’s getting another physical and drug test. She’d already passed that stuff back in August, but they have to do it again before they fly her to South Carolina. She had already taken her enlistment oath in August, but that’ll probably be done again as well, while George W Bush is still the Commander-in-Chief! :)

  12. A huge Thank You to Autumn!

    A huge Thank You to Autumn’s family for the support and love I have no doubt she will receive throughout her time as an Army gal!

  13. I read about your daughter on ALa’s blog. Way to go! I remember my trepidation, excitement, and anxiety when my youngest daughter joined. Way to go!

  14. I want to THANK your daughter for my FREEDOM. May she be safe thoughout the length of her service, and well beyond. I reverently thank you and your family, and all those charged with protecting our Great Country. ALL those BRAVE Men and Women, Past, Present, and Future can NEVER BE THANKED ENOUGH, and will NEVER, EVER BE FORGOTTEN. May the sun shine on your family always.

  15. Many thanks to your daughter for going beyond herself. And my thanks to you as well.

    My oldest son finished Parris Island in August and is currently enjoying the warm Oklahoma sunshine at Ft. Sill where he is going thru training for his MOS (radar counterbattery technician).

  16. I just found out my daughter just got back from Iraq Monday, after being there since prior to Thanksgiving ’07. She feels naked being in her own home alone in civilian clothes without her weapon and live rounds and she’s shopping for ice cube trays.

Comments are closed.