In 2013 my contract supporting the Air Force was coming to an end. I decided not to renew it and take a break to do something I have wanted to do for a long time. This was to attempt a through-hike of the Appalachian Trail. I was toying with the idea for a number of months and early 2013 decided to read up on the trail a little, review all my current gear, purchase new gear as required, and come up with a rough plan.
The last day of my contract was Wednesday, April 17, 2013. I gave a one month notice to the company I was subcontracting to and to the Government office I was supporting. I really didn’t tell anyone else.
At the time, I had a buddy who sold his house and was staying with me while he looked for a new place. I told him about a week before my last day that I was going to be gone a few months. He asked how I was going to get down to GA to start the hike. I hadn’t made a final decision yet but was leaning towards renting a car or just flying down. He works for the Defense Contract Audit Agency (DCAA) and had a lot of vacation time saved up. He said he would be willing to drive me down!
On April 17th, I flew home from a work trip to OH and then spent the few hours I had left doing my final packing. On Friday, April 19th, sometime late morning, we started driving to GA. We arrived at the Amicalola State Park on Sunday, April 21st and stayed in the hotel for the night. On Monday, he dropped me off on the trail near Springer Mountain and I started hiking north.
This is essentially the start of the next few years of irresponsibility…
After a typical high school experience, I went to the University of New Hampshire where I majored in Mechanical Engineering. Everything was fairly normal until sophomore year where I proceeded to mess up a couple courses. In addition, the ME program had a couple semesters during the four years where they wanted you to take 20 or so credits in core engineering courses. I was not feeling that ambitious, sooooo….between the screwed up courses and too many engineering credits, I decided I was now on the 5 year plan.
Upon graduation in 1982, I took a job at Hanscom AFB as a GS-5 government employee. I was in a special training program that rotated you to different offices until you became a GS-12. It was my start in the project and program management world.
After three and a half years, I left the Government and worked for a company that provided engineering and program management support to Hanscom AFB. I worked a variety of programs until 1996 when I left the company. At that point, I started subcontracting to different companies that supported Hanscom AFB. Until 2013 I managed a number of programs. Approximately 25 years of my career has been in Foreign Military Sales which is managing defense programs for other countries that are buying our Air Force equipment.
Since 2013 I have been doing bucket-list stuff while I still have my health and the time and ability. Someday I will grow up I guess but I am doing pretty good at delaying it…
MORE NUGGETS OF GOOD STUFF
Born Hyannis, MA
Winnicunnett High School, Hampton, NH
University of NH, BSME, 1982
Project Engineer at Hanscom AFB, 1982-1985
USAF support contractor at Dynamics Research Corporation, 1986-1996
Independent contractor to USAF at Hanscom AFB, 1996-2013
25+ years of Foreign Military Sales (FMS) experience
Worked in my dads kennel and pet shop for many years until junior year of high school
Moved furniture for a couple summers in high school
Worked mosquito control for Hampton and North Hampton, NH while in college