Never volunteer???

Chicago, IL

In 1943 when I was a senior in high school in Chicago, naval ace Joe Foss came to our school and recruited me and a few others into naval aviation. Apparently he was quite successful, because there were 50 or so of us from the area inducted, and half were sent to Opa Locka Naval Air Station near Miami to mark time until our next assignment was ready for us.
The first day on the base I was walking with another cadet when a vehicle carrying the base commander stopped us and ordered us to appear the next morning with two other cadets for an assignment. When I told my roommates about this, my best friend Johnny said there was no way he was going to volunteer for anything.
When I and three others showed up at the commandant's office, he assigned us to meet the one special plane arriving each day and, if there were any VIPs aboard, to drive them into Miami. This turned out to be super-sweet duty.
Johnny was assigned to trash/garbage pickup duty for the three months we were there. So much for never volunteering.

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