Friendship better than gold: Basic with high school buddy at Fort Knox, Ky.

My hometown school friend Dennis Kreger and I joined the Army's delayed entry program in 1982, well before our high school graduation in 1983. We both signed up for active duty as an "M60A3 armor crewman specialist (19E)," and so we ended up at the same basic training post. One Station Unit Training combined basic training and job training sequentially at the same location.

I was assigned to the B-4-1 Training Brigade at Fort Knox, Ky. Although he started a short time before me, we were just across the sports field from each other. Our living quarters were known as the "Disney Barracks," which were the more modern red brick buildings. We did our initial in-processing week in the original World War II wooden barracks, which is the same location that the movie "Stripes" was filmed. I saw the film in 1981, so it was interesting to see and experience all the filming sites around the same time. It was great to see and occasionally talk with a best friend while going through an extended type basic training. He was able to tell me what to expect next throughout the multiple training phases and events.

The attached photo shows us meeting up at my basic training graduation ceremony. He was still there awaiting orders to report to 82nd Airborne Armor Unit (in North Carolina). I received orders to the 3rd Armored Division, 2/32 Armor Battalion in Kirchgoens, Germany. We kept in touch over the years and I visited him in Arizona on my way to Air Force missileer training in 1992, after graduating from USF and earning an officer commission from Air Force ROTC.

He passed away a few years ago, so I dedicate this posting to him, our friendship, and our service. Memories remain.

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