(John Milton, “On His Blindness,” ca. 1655)

I’m not a veteran because I never was active duty after basic training and AIT, but I did my share of standing and waiting (Utah Army National Guard, 1980-86).

Everything seems to have changed or been reorganized since then.  I was with the 144th Evacuation Hospital in Salt Lake City, the 116th Combat Support Engineer Company in Springville, and a detachment of the 142nd Military Intelligence (Linguist) Battalion in Logan.

History here.


Our shoulder patch (source).  This one time my section leader from the Russian section at the 142nd was doing a training exercise …somewhere out of state, and he told a guy we were a classified bio-warfare unit with weaponized bees.  Apparently this was believed.  Mr. Manwaring had a sincere Mormon face and deportment which were perfect for recreational lying.


These are 142nd insignia — you can buy them here.  I would say we got them for free and theoretically we did, but in the 142nd we ended up having to purchase a ridiculous amount of little necessities because our supply guy in Ogden sucked.