For an answer to our questions, I reached out to Army Major Matt Rhees, a friend of mine from my teenage years. Matt and I became friends while waiting tables together at a steakhouse in Tulsa, OK during high school. While we kept in touch through our college years living in different states, it wasn’t until joining FaceBook a few years ago that he and I got back in touch.
Matt enlisted in the US Army in 1996 and served for several years before returning to Graduate School at the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville. Commissioned a 2nd Lieutenant in January 2000, he joined the Arkansas Army National Guard as a Field Artillery Officer. He mobilized in June 2005 and deployed to Iraq in November as Company Commander of 151 officers and men, where they conducted missions of convey escort and area security north of Baghdad. They transitioned to detention operations to help close down the infamous Abu Ghraib prison. For his service, he received the Bronze Star and Combat Action Badge. He now lives just north of Little Rock, Arkansas with his wife and two children, and is an Active Duty Guardsman.
We are very thankful to Matt for his service as well as taking the time to share his thoughts with us. His words are honest, his statement eye opening, and his point of view is particularly poignant. Please leave him a comment tomorrow to say thank you for sharing this with all of us.
What Does it Mean to be a Veteran Today? by Major Matt Rhees