Survivor: The Professional Edition
20 some military personnel are put on some remote station with no amenities, a very vaguely stated mission and a minimal equipment load out. There’s no prize money for the successful team. It’s all part of days work. Failure simply isn’t considered.
My participation in Survivor: TPE was one of the most exciting and satisfying experiences in my military career. I was a member of a six man team. We were inserted into a remote location with a very limited equipment load out and a very vague mission. Less than 24 hours after insertion we were fully operational. Within 72 hours we were fully integrated into the existing Task Force making a positive contribution to the defense of our AOR. By the time we were relieved on station three weeks later all of the commands in the AOR praised our work and said that they were surprised at how much we were able to contribute to the operation.
We had no showers, no toilets, no running water and no potable water save what we bought in. After touching down on station we had to clean out our living spaces to make them clean enough to sleep. With the help of the Marines who were already on station we got our equipment and supplies secured. Over the following three days we set up an operation center and living area. We solved the problems of hygiene, sleeping, eating and watch standing. We spent three weeks constantly improving our operations and our contribution to the mission.
Six guys were inserted. One tight team came home. At this point, it is no longer about whether and what awards we might get for our efforts. At least for me, I know what I did out there. I know what the commands that we worked with had to say about us and our efforts. I know and the rest of my team knows. Every thing after that is gravy.
On Other Topics
My friends from the 3rd ACR are now home with their families. Do you think even one of them would remember to send their new pal at Camp Spearhead an email letting him know how good it is to be home? Not a damn one of them! Hey, Supply Guy, Sarge, and the lot of you, thanks a lot!!
It appears that my friend from Molokai who serves with the 3rd Mountain Division also went home. Good for her. I hope she enjoys her sister’s graduation.
I made some new friends during my Survivor experience. The Man from Broken Hill, The Gerbil (no cardboard tube in sight, thankfully), and Stanley Laurel. The current plan will have The Man from Broken Hill at my house for Christmas this year. I’m looking forward to that. The Gerbil and Stanley have promised to provide lists of movies and television shows that offer some insight into their respective societies and cultures.
A few of my new friends will remain in seclusion for a while longer. CC Rider, Force Four, Eight Delta, Maxwell’s Hammer, Warchuck, and the rest of the Marines out there, write me and let me know you’re home.
It has been an honor to serve with all of these guys, old friends and new. It will be interesting to see who I manage to stay in touch with.