As part of the launch of the new ACI Veteran Module and in honor of Veterans Day, ACI is running a 3-part blog series highlighting some of the personal stories around the office of how veterans have touched and influenced our lives.
Today is the first part in the series, beginning with ACI Graphic Designer, Saul Sepulveda. Enjoy his story, and look for the personal stories of ACI’s Executive Assistant Amanda Rodgers and Wellness Director Alison Viebrock later this week.
A Military Life
My dad has been in the military since before I was born. I also have three uncles, two brothers and multiple other family members who have served throughout all the branches of the military, but US Navy Retired Chief Petty Officer Saul Sepulveda, OSC – is the man I call father.
With over 22 years of active duty service, my dad is no stranger to conflict. Growing up in the 90’s, our family had to endure my dad’s long tours of duty away from home, including several 9-month deployments over a three-year span at the height of conflict in the Persian Gulf. This was a scary time for my family, for me, and my dad. That much time spent in conflict overseas will change a man. No matter how ‘normal’ we wanted things to be when he came home, there was no hiding the way the war had affected him.
However, this is part of the sacrifice service members make when joining up for the service. In the end, it has made him a stronger man and I couldn’t be a more proud son and American.
In light of the difficulty, there are still many advantages that I am grateful for that could only have been made possible by growing up in a military family. I’ve travelled the open ocean and to Hawaii on a Navy ship with my father, taken target practice at military firing ranges, learned state-of-the-art navigation and operations equipment, and had many other health and personal benefits that could only be made possible by growing up in a military family. Many of the interests that I have now in my older years like archery are things that I may not have gotten into without the influence and encouragement from my father and his background.
As a kid, my dad would take me to on-shore duty where he would teach navigation and operations classes to the young sailors. He would let me play with the radar equipment and really make me feel like a part of the process. These are some of my fondest memories.
Being a part of the military instills such a sense of pride and honor. Being able to share that with my dad is something that I will never forget.
For more information on the Veteran Module please visit our YouTube channel and be sure to follow us on twitter @ACISpecBenefits, Google+, Pinterest and facebook. Also contact ACI Specialty Benefits at (800) 932-0034, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.