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Hello, I’m a Military Brat

Pease Air Force Base at Portsmouth, New Hampshire. The picture was taken in the May 1966 from the balcony of the operations building. I was in the 7th grade. There is one KC-135 and six B-52s on the runway.

Pease Air Force Base, Portsmouth, New Hampshire. There are one KC-135 and six B-52s on the runway. The picture dates from May 1966. I was in the 7th grade. I lived on Pease AFB from February 1966 to May 1967 and was in the 7th and 8th grades while we lived there.

What is a military brat? A military brat is the son or daughter of an airman, marine, sailor, or soldier. These children of career military have shared characteristics. They grew up in a community of service. Sacrificing for the greater good is part of their character. They moved on average once every three years to a new state, region, or country.

Academic studies show military brats lack racism.1 They are the only color blind group in the USA. They are the most open-minded of any subgroup in the world. They are more tolerant and embrace diversity with respect for others better than their civilian counterparts to include those raised in liberal homes. They are equally respectful and tolerant of conservative, moderate and liberal points of view.2

They adapt to change and new situations better than any group in the United States. 2

They are socially independent. They do well in personal relationships. They put the needs of the other people ahead of their needs.

Military brats who grew up as military dependents particularly in the late 1940s to early 1970s are kinder, caring, and more loyal than their raised as civilian children counterparts. They were higher achievers academically and professionally make the best employees due to characteristics like self-discipline, self-starter, flexibility, and their personal fiscal responsibility. 2

Most military brats do not have a real hometown.2 Most do not know their cousins, aunts, and uncles or grandparents very well. Many do not trust the governments of North Korea, Russia, and China.

The word brat is not derogatory. It stands for:

B – Born

R – Raised

A – And

T – Trained1

I’m a military brat. My father served in the United States Army, United States Army Air Force and the United States Air Force (USAF). He retired from the USAF.

I am also a former United States Army officer. Growing up as a military brat helped prepare me for my service. It was all natural and comfortable to me. I felt it was where I belonged more than anyplace else in my life.

1 http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=military%20brat

2 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Military_brat_(U.S._subculture)


Jimmie Aaron Kepler is a novelist, poet, book reviewer, and award-winning short story writer. His work has appeared in over twenty venues, including Bewildering Stories and Beyond Imagination. When not writing each morning at his favorite coffeehouse, he supports his writing, reading, and book reviewing habit working as an IT application support analyst. He is a former Captain in the US Army. His blog Kepler’s Book Reviews was named a 100 best blogs for history buffs. You can visit him at http://www.jimmiekepler.com.


3 Comments

  1. Henry Pratte says:

    I took the name as air force brat and I am reaching out to call for help to save a non profit that I started called the: Veterans Museum of NH and need 5 min. New board members to keep pushing this cause further in development. Would you or know of some military brats that could help me continue pushing forward on this subject or know where to send me in the right direction? You email me or call me at 603-566-0441 thanks so much. Henry

  2. Rose bushes would have been nice. I attend three school for grades seven and eight. I started the seventh grade in El Paso, Texas at Ben Milam School on Biggs Air Force Base. Biggs AFB was home to the 95th Bomb Wing of the USAF. It was a B-52 bomber and KC-135 tanker base. From the school grounds I would watch US Army draftees march down the long dirt road into the desert as they went through basic training in preparation for going to Vietnam. I could be scary sometimes. Sometimes we watched aircraft emergency land knowing one of our parents could be on the aircraft. The second junior high school I attend was Portsmouth Junior High School in historic Portsmouth, New Hampshire.My father was at Pease AFB, home of the 509th Bomb Wing. The 509th is the unit that dropped the atomic bombs on Japan. It was a B-52 and kC-135 base. Portsmouth Junior High School. It was a couple of blocks south of downtown Portsmouth, NH on Parrot Ave. Only two blocks away was the historic John Paul Jones Home and three blocks another direction the historic Strawberry Bank. Across Parrot Avenue from the school was the South Mill Pond. From the second and third floor you could see the Piscataqua River and out into the Atlantic Ocean. The St Patrick’s Catholic School which went through 8th grade was on Austin Street two and one-half blocks to the west. My father retired from the USAF the end of April 1967. We moved back to Texas and lived with my grandparents for the month of May. I attended Nixon Junior High School (now Nixon-Smiley) for a month. I went from a military influent school with nearly 300 in the eighth grade to a rural school with 14 in the 8th grade. I was related to over half the class. I was one place that I felt I did not fit in. A dairy queen across state highway 80 was my view. I had a near 20 mile bus ride to school.

  3. Storm Small says:

    Thank you for some insight into a sub-culture that I have very little understanding about. The view from my Junior High School window was rose bushes.

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