When I was deployed to Iraq my license plate was up for renewal. My buddy Rich said that his wife works at the BVM and could get a good number on a Hoosier Veteran plate. Up until that point I hadn’t given much thought into getting a Hoosier Vet plate. I guess since I was in Iraq I felt like I had earned it. I relayed the information to Mom who is my power of attorney. I was pretty pleased with the design and look of the plate. I was in the Indiana Army National Guard so I liked that it had crossed American Flag and the Indiana State Flag, and Army branch of service. As silly as it sounds I kind of held my head a little higher when driving my Jeep with the plate.
This year September it was time for me to renew of plates again. I looked on the BMV website and found out that I was getting a new plate. I didn’t know the plate design was changing until I left the BMV. I was kind of upset by the new design. It now had the Army Seal and no flags. It had been changed from having Hoosier Veteran to Army Veteran.
I am proud to have served in the active duty Army in Iraq. I am also proud to have served in the Indiana Army National Guard. The National Guard is great because you get to serve your local community. As well as any state that would need help with a natural disaster. I was actived in the winter of 2004 after a huge snowstorm came through. In Evansville we had 22inches of snow and the surrounding areas were hit hard as well. I was activated to help in the Vincennes area with flooding. I was a 88M(mike) Motor Transport Operator, which is Army speak for a truck driver. The job I was assigned was to drive a tracker trailer full of sand bags to river. We made made countless trips from INDOT to the river. The scariest moment was driving down a road closed to public because of the high water and ice on the road. I wasn’t driving but as an Assistant Driver you still have to be alert and know what’s going on. I look into the mirror and realize I can’t see the trailer in the mirror. I look over to Ambrose who was driving and ask him where the trailer was. He said over here. I then realize we are sliding and the about to jack-kinfe into the water. We both held our breath and hoped we wouldn’t end up in the freezing cold water. The truck stopped about 6 inches from the waters edge. After we had made it safely across the road we both joked around about what we would have done if we went into the water. Ambrose told me he was pretty close to bailing out and jumping over me to get out of the truck. We worked day and night until the situation was under control.
The reason I initially was upset with the new plate was because it didn’t recognize my serving the state of Indiana. I’m proud to have been able to help my community in the harsh winter storm. I’ve since realized that it doesn’t really matter, I’m a Veteran and that’s all that matters. I recently started taking advantage of my VA benefits. I got my card in the mail making it all seem official.