About Me

I grew up in Southern California.  I graduated from Mira Mesa High School in San Diego, went to college at San Diego State University, went to the beach more than I went to SDSU,  joined the Navy in San Diego, and went to boot camp in San Diego.

After basic training I was sent to Air Traffic Control “A” school in Millington, Tennessee, and then shipped off to my first duty station in Brunswick, Maine.  About as far away from SoCal you can get.   It felt like I drove into a Norman Rockwell painting!

I made a career out of my Naval service retiring 20 years later at NAS Patuxent River, Maryland in August of 2001.

That's my house on the left with the gazebo in the backyard. Pre-EFHW and VHF/UHF vertical. Anaverde neighborhood, Palmdale, CA.

I had a short stint at the Sikorsky Memorial airport in Bridgeport, Connecticut.  While working traffic in the control tower I got a phone call from the Air Force and was offered a job at Edwards AFB…in California.  So, we packed up our game and headed out west.

I’ve been working as a military RADAR unit controller at Edwards AFB since 2002.  The facility controls a portion of the R2508 complex over the Mohave Desert somewhere between Area 51 and Los Angeles.

The YL

My wife grew up in the lakes region of New Hampshire.  She was enrolled in the delayed entry program and shipped off to Navy boot camp in Orlando, Florida after graduating High School a year prior to myself.

Where it all began. The base chapel at NAS Brunswick, Maine.

Where it all began. The base chapel at NAS Brunswick, Maine.

She also attended school in Millington, Tennessee, and was then stationed as close to home as she could get – NAS Brunswick, Maine.

We met, dated, fell in love, and eventually were separated by orders two years later when she was transferred to – you guessed it – San Diego.

NALF San Clemente Island was her new duty station and it was considered sea duty since women were not allowed on combat ships at the time.  They conducted Carrier Controlled Approaches (CCA) and Field Carrier Landing Practice (FLCP) on the island so she attended Carrier Air Traffic Control Center “C” school in Millington enroute to San Clemente.

A day that will live in infamy...I hope! December 17, 1994.

A day that will live in infamy...I hope! December 17, 1994.

She flew back to Maine less than a year later for our wedding on December 17, 1994.  We honeymooned at a ski resort in Maine.

I took orders to San Diego several months later and we’ve been together ever since.

Homecoming from my first deployment on the USS Essex (LHD-2.)  I was the MARS operator (NNN0CRU) for three years.

Homecoming from my first deployment on the USS Essex (LHD-2.) I was the MARS operator (NNN0CRU) for three years.

She was medically discharged and had our first son in 1996.  Two months later I was departed for a six month western pacific deployment. It was a very difficult time for both of us but she had the support of some wonderful friends she met at a breasfeeding support group who introduced her to homeschooling.

For the next 20 years she homeschooled our two boys while running a successful business as a birth coach (Doula), and later as a Lamaze childbirth instructor.  In addition she ran a successful Etsy shop until last year when she decided to retire.

 

The Kids

We have two boys who were homeschooled all the way from Kindergarten through 12th grade and are now college graduates.

Our oldest son being sworn in during his commissioning ceremony.

 Our oldest (KN6YAN) graduated from CalMaritime in 2022 and was commissioned as an Ensign in the Navy Reserves.  He’s  currently the fourth generation in my family to serve in the US Navy and the first commissioned officer.  I have a long family history of Naval service dating back to the British Navy in 1700’s.

Our yougest son graduated from the avionics program at Antelope Valley College with degree in Electronics.  He currently works at Barnes & Noble part-time while attending a two-year intensive workshop in preparation for a writing career in marketing.

Yada, yada, yada…

Bedtime!  Circa 1998.

Bedtime! Circa 1998.

Over the years we’ve lived in some amazing parts of the world and had some wonderful opportunities for travel.

Looking forward off the bow of USS Essex right below the safety-net of the flight deck!  Circa 1996.

Looking forward off the bow of USS Essex right below the safety-net of the flight deck! Circa 1996.

After the YL and I were married I transferred to San Diego where I was stationed on the USS Essex (LHD-2) for three years.  We then moved to Whidbey Island, Washington, where we started our homeschooling journey and grew into a family.

Five years later, after the Y2K hype and the terror attacks on 9/11, we moved back to San Diego and enjoyed the beach and the sun with friends and family for three years.  I remember sitting in my backyard drinking a beer around the fire pit, the kids playing on the trampoline and watching the fireworks across the bay at Sea World and thinking to myself, “why did I apply for a transfer to Italy? ”  I went in to work the next day to change my transfer request and look for a duty station in San Diego but was informed that the bidding closed the night before.  A few months later we were packing up and moving to the Mediterranean.

Me, oldest, youngest, and YL on the Tour Eiffel!

Me, oldest, youngest, and YL on the Tour Eiffel!

The travel overseas was outstanding.  We lived in a military family housing neighborhood on the island of Sicily.  We were able to venture out and immerse ourselves in the culture but it was nice to return home to “little America.”  In addition to Rome, Naples, Venice and many other towns in Italy we also traveled to France, UK, Ireland, Germany, Austria, Czech Republic, and Malta, visiting ancient locales, trying new foods, and making family memories to last a lifetime.

Making out at the Berlin Wall.  Berlin, Germany.  Circa 2009.

Making out at the Berlin Wall. Berlin, Germany. Circa 2009.

 The Fun Stuff

A few years ago the whole family took training and got our motorcycle endorsements.

My 2015 Dyna Switchback FLD across the street from the Kill Bill Church.

My 2015 Dyna Switchback FLD across the street from the Kill Bill Church.

My first bike was a Harley Davidson Dyna Switchback.  I recently sold it and bought a BMW R1250RT.

Heather and her 2019 Indian Scout loaded up for Babes Ride Out.

Heather and her 2019 Indian Scout loaded up for Babes Ride Out.

My wife started on a Triumph Street Twin and now rides an Indian Scout.  The boys each learned on a Ninja 250.  Our youngest has a Honda ST 1300, and our oldest has three bikes – a BMW 1200GS, a Ducati Mondster, and a Yamaha WR400.  They take up entirely too much room in the garage.

Heather at her Women's Intro to Shooting class. Circa 2021.

Heather at her Women's Intro to Shooting class. Circa 2021.

A few years ago, my wife took an intro to women’s handgun class where she learned to run a Glock 19.  Less than a year later we both have our California CCW permit and own several firearms.

I'm pretty sure this serpent wanted to fight. Borrego Springs.

I'm pretty sure this serpent wanted to fight. Borrego Springs.

I’ve been working in the High Desert for over 10 years now and I’m ready to hang it up.  I am eligible for retirement in 2027 and that’s currently our goal.  We’ll most likely end up in Tennesee, New Hampshire or Florida.  Or possible all three.  California has been fun but the cost of living and the politics are proving to be too much to bear.

Thank You

If you’ve read this far, then I’m sincerely humbled.  Thank you for spending a few minutes of your day reading about me and my amazing family!