Enlistment and Basic Training
Interviewee: Tyler Jewkes
Tyler Jewkes was born in Richfield, Utah and grew up in Central Valley, a small rural town in Utah. Tyler had a few family members who had previously served in the military and overall had a very patriotic family. He decided he wanted to join the Army National Guard for pride and a way to pay for college. His father was very supportive of this decision but his mom was hesitant. He went to basic training and advanced individual training at Fort Sill, Oklahoma in November 2001. He explains that during this time he was whipped into shape physically and mentally. The recent attacks on the World Trade Center added an urgency, and war mentality, to his training.
Tyler joined the Army National Guard 222nd Field Artillery and on his return home he felt a great sense of pride in his service. He served an LDS mission to Santiago, Chile in 2002 and describes the anti-U.S. media he experienced in Chile when the war with Iraq started. When he returned home he enrolled in school and did a semester before his unit was deployed to Camp Shelby, Mississippi. His unit was trained as infantry before they left for Kuwait. Tyler recalls the reality of war hitting him when he saw the fully armed security upon his arrival in Kuwait. From there his unit was flown to their station at Ramadi, Iraq. In Ramadi Tyler performed several missions such as combat and road patrol, base defense, and an artillery operation. He describes the problems his unit experienced and the interactions he had with Iraqis. After serving for a year in Iraq he returned home to a lot of support. His deployment to Iraq convinced him to choose the military as a career. He is currently attending school at the University of Utah and has a desire to become an officer in the Army National Guard.