MamaSquad !
 

MamaSquad!Chapter 1

…ALL THAT YOU CAN BE
Behind those ads you see on TV -- about the Army being such a fabulous way to earn a living that you want to immediately rush out, join up, and build a career -- are real places and real people in uniform living that life for real. This story is about one of those people in a few of those places.
Traffic moving along the two-lane street of the city passed by the display window. Only someone expressly looking for it would probably be fully aware of what was printed on it: “U.S. Army Recruiting Station.”
Inside, a row of chairs for prospective recruits and end tables containing magazines lined the window facing the street. Colorful posters describing and illustrating various military jobs and opportunities decorated most of the wall space. Phrases from the posters seemed to jump out at prospective recruits who happened to enter this office – advertising the Army as a solid investment, as a down payment on one’s future, and as an opportunity for travel and adventure; also, as a place to experience personal growth and to develop self confidence.
Sign up, the posters urged, and the Army will train you in one of more than 200 occupational specialties. And during the training process to master that specialty, the Army promises you an opportunity to test yourself both physically and mentally, to learn to work as a team, to develop leadership qualities, to bring out the best in yourself and to help bring out the best in others, to reach down deep and give your very best effort, to meet the challenge, and most of all, to succeed.
Beyond the promises and the slogans inscribed on those posters, the reality was that once a person signed a contract and joined the Army, that they obligated themselves to months, even years of training in basic combat skills and then in the military specialty they had selected.
Near the door of the office two racks of pamphlets, free for the taking, provided additional details on various Army programs and military skills.
The man sitting at the desk knew only too well how exaggerated those claims the Army made were. But he also realized that if a person really tried he could make some of those slogans into realities, as he personally had done in his long Army career.
A wooden plate prominently displayed on the desk identified the person sitting behind it: “SFC R.A. Waldo,” Sergeant First Class Raymond Arnold Waldo, a man in his mid-50’s, of medium height, and overweight. What hair he had left on his head was rapidly turning gray.
In addition to the nameplate that rested on top of Sergeant Waldo’s desk, there was a telephone, a small wooden filing box, a pad of lined paper, and a pen.
A partition to the side of the sergeant’s desk concealed the desk and working area of the recruiting officer, Lieutenant Robert Jones.
The wall behind Sergeant Waldo’s desk held citations of awards and family photographs of younger days. He had been a widower for some time now. The numerous items displayed on the back wall indicated that he had been in the Army for a long time. He sometimes told people, “I’ve been in the Army for almost 30 years; might as well make it a career.”
As you can see, Sergeant Waldo was a man who appreciated jokes; a few of his were even funny ones. He might even have laughed at the idea that the Army was the biggest joke of all, and that the real joke was on the poor chump who got suckered into joining up. He could have, but he didn’t because one matter he took very seriously was that of recruitment. To Sergeant Waldo, the process of getting others to commit themselves to the Army by signing the enlistment papers on the dotted line was something he treated with the greatest dignity. But in the back of his mind, when he thought about the subject of commitment, was the thought that anyone who joined the Army should be committed — as in locked up in a padded cell.
Sergeant Waldo listened reluctantly as a longhaired, unshaven, shabbily-dressed young man sitting in the side chair rattled on. Something the young man said obviously irritated Sergeant Waldo because he suddenly rose to his feet and motioned for the young man to stand up. He opened the door and pointed the way for the young man to leave.
“Get a haircut,” the sergeant yelled after the young man as he walked away. “And for your information, my name is not dude.”
Some time had passed since the abrupt departure of the young man. Now a clean-cut-looking young man sat in the side chair by the sergeant’s desk. Sergeant Waldo held out a pen to the young man, who proceeded to sign the forms lying on the desk in front of him. They both stood up and shook hands. Then the sergeant escorted the young man to the door.
“It’ll take a few days to run a local check. I’ll call you,” Sergeant Waldo told the young man, as he opened the door for him.
“Thanks, sergeant,” the young man replied.
As soon as the young man had departed, Sergeant Waldo closed the door, turned his back to it, leaned against it, breathed a deep sigh of relief, smiled, and raised his fist in the air in triumph, having successfully recruited another warm body for the Army. His smile became even broader as the Army’s recruiting tune, “Be All That You Can Be,” came into his mind.
        And then  . . .
 
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CONTENTS

MAMA SQUAD 1
DEDICATION 3
AND IN MEMORY OF… 3
INTRODUCTION 5
CONTENTS 7
…ALL THAT YOU CAN BE 9
AT HOME 15
RE-TIRE-MENT 26
BETTER DAYS 39
A PLAN 57
…NEVER TOO OLD 66
…COUNTING NOSES 80
A NO-GO 87
IN TRAINING 100
…LADIES NO MORE 112
TRADITIONS 119
…IN BETWEEN JOBS 126
DINOSAURS AND DESTINY 131
GETTING THE LOWDOWN 139
ON THE MOVE… 150
CAPTIVE AUDIENCE 160
…AND KICKING BUTT 166
EXECUTIONS? 178
ESCAPE! 182
SPRINGIN’ ‘EM 188
THE CHASE 196
RESCUED 201
HONORED 208
 
 
 



From MamaSquad! by Clarence Wall copyright 2001 by Clarence Wall
BeachHouse Books, (2001) ISBN 1-888725-13-3     5½ X 8½,  230 pp. $14.95
BeachHouse Books  ~   PO Box 7151  ~  Chesterfield MO 63006-7151  ~  (636) 394-4950
beachhousebooks.com
 

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last modified March 13, 2010
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BeachHouse Books™

an imprint of Science & Humanities Press
PO Box 7151   Chesterfield MO 63006-7151  (636) 394-4950


BeachHouse Books-an imprint of Science& Humanities Press
PO Box 7151   Chesterfield MO 63006-7151  (636) 394-4950
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