I grew up as a son of a pilot, so I
kind of always saw that camaraderie and kind of that lifestyle and so I think
I’d always envisioned myself serving, but the practical reasons and career-specific reasons developed over time and I started to see that, wow this would be
a really good option for me, it’s a ready-made practice that I can walk into
and it’s not the same thing every day so that really appealed to me. I did the FAP
program which is a financial assistance program that you sign up for during
residency. So I signed my commissioning paperwork and basically just started
getting money from the Air Force and had no other contact at that time, but as
soon as I was done with my residency, literally the next day I was in the
active-duty Air Force and on my way to Officer Training School. I was looking
forward to that, I wanted them to mold me into an officer, I mean, I came in the Air
Force not to just be a physician, but to be an officer. My job, when I arrived, was
just to be a staff family physician. Over time, I took on duties as a flight
commander, which is basically, in the private world, would be running a small
clinic. Now throughout that, and this is life in the Air Force, I’ve been on two
deployments that I had a tasking to go to a humanitarian mission to the
Dominican Republic. One of our last days in one of our locations, there was some
sort of rioting going on and and we couldn’t, the road was blockaded, so we
couldn’t get home basically. So they had to bring Blackhawk helicopters to come
get us out and that was one of those moments where, I’m here with an
international health organization, an NGO, there’s no helicopters flying in to get
out me and my colleagues. It reminded me that, wow the Air Force mission has a lot
of resources they bring to bear and it’s a neat thing to be a part of. If you want to have a bigger mission, if you want to be a part of a group doing
something, a team, that has a mission that starts with a patient but extends far
beyond that, then I think the Air Force is an option. I have already signed up to
extend my time in the Air Force. So far it’s been a good match for us and
and we want to keep going