Veterans' Reflections: Third-Generation Sailor Recalls ServiceBy Ian Graham
Emerging Media, Defense Media Activity
WASHINGTON, Nov. 25, 2010 - As a third-generation Navy man, John Gainer knew what kind of commitment and dedication it would take when he accepted a commission in 1992.
Gainer said some of his most vivid memories come from long days and nights, watching his crew dig through boxes and crates searching for contraband.
"Sometimes we would spend eight, 10, 12 hours out on a ship, going through crates and boxes, making sure there was nothing illegal being transported to Iraq," he said. "Their dedication to that mission was most impressive to me."
But the best glimpse into Gainer's own dedication to his country comes in his humility about it. While some brag and boast of the great things they did while in uniform, Gainer said he was just happy to be able to work for the nation and, as he put it, "the cause of freedom."
"I'm thankful that I had the opportunity to serve -- to serve the American people and to defend the Constitution of the United States," he said.
("Veterans' Reflections" is a collection of stories of men and women who served their country in World War II, the Korean War, the Vietnam War, operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm, and the present-day conflicts. They will be posted throughout November in honor of Veterans Day.)
Special Report: Veterans' Reflections