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Memoir
(Non-Fic)
SERVING IN THE ARMY DURING THE COLD WAR: A roller coaster ride of 22 years on a wing and a prayer.
by CORA ANN


I was born in New Orleans, La. I joined the Army in 1977. I arrived in Heidelberg, Germany in 1979 as a single parent with two small daughters. After many tours in Germany during the Cold War, I retired here after 22 years in the Army. As a Permanently Disabled Veteran, I enjoy writing about my experiences, adventures, and meeting new people. A big plus for me is learning about different cultures while traveling. I kept a journal and have written several hundred stories and articles over the past 25 years. ChapterBuzz has encouraged me to step out of my comfort zone and start my first book. "Sounds interesting!"

CHAPTER 1 - ENLISTING IN THE UNITED STATES ARMY
Basic Training at Fort Jackson, South Carolina

EACH CHALLENGE STRENGTHENED ME

I found a picture of my Basic Training unit on the internet!!! How cool is that? 

I joined the Army to escape from a violent, abusive ex-husband. I had to sign my two kids over to a guardian while I completed basic training. That was an extremely difficult decision. I knew I had to do something to make a better life for my kids and me. I didn’t know what to expect at Basic Training. I soon realized that I was stronger than I ever thou...



MY EX-HUSBAND WAS A VIOLENT DOMESTIC ABUSER
Saving my children and myself

JOINING THE ARMY SAVED ME FROM A VIOLENT DOMESTIC ABUSER 

My ex-husband was a physical and emotional abuser. He would beat me coming and going for nothing at all. He had a nasty temper, and anything would set him off. He punched me in my mouth one time while lying on our sofa and broke one of my bottom teeth. Then he stood over me and watched me cry as I covered my mouth. Then for some reason, he started crying too and told me he was sorry. I ignored him, turned away from him and continue...



ON THE ROAD AGAIN
My Titanic Hangover in Tuzla, Bosnia

HOOOOOOONNNNNNKKK!" blared the warning from the horn of a gigantic ship bearing down on me. Terrified in my fragile rubber raft, I started to row like hell to get out of its way. Sweat rolled down my face despite the frigid temperatures. On instinct, I squeezed my eyes tighter and braced my ears for another irritating blast that would further piss me off.

Sensing a lull in the deafening noise, I eased one eyelid open with caution to assess this horrific situation. To my surprise, there was no ship...



A UNIQUE GIFT FROM A POOR BOSNIAN WOMAN
It wasn't offensive. It was a gift.

When I retired from the Army in Vilseck, Germany, I found a job working for City Colleges of Chicago. This job required that I deploy to Sarajevo, Bosnia to work in the CCC Education Center. I jumped at this chance to travel to another county. While there, I had several incredible experiences and was fortunate enough to meet many amazing people. To this day, I have never regretted my decision.

When I arrived in Sarajevo, Bosnia, I was assigned to a US military base called Camp Eagle near Tuz...



FORT BENJAMIN HARRISON, INDIANA
Bye Morse Code! Hello Army Stenographer!

I had an advantage. I had taken the Gregg Shorthand Course before I joined the Army, so I knew this would be an easy course for me to complete. But one major thing interrupted my training. My ex-husband had abducted my kids after I was given full custody during my divorce.

...



FORT POLK, LOUISIANA
Snakes, mosquitoes, heat and I never got along.

I am from New Orleans, Louisiana. Fort Polk was in the western part of the state. I had never traveled to that area so Fort Polk and its surrounding community of run-down trailer parks was not my cup of tea. I felt like I had been assigned to a foreign third-world country...

...



HEIDELBERG, GERMANY!
An Army stenographer for a 4-star general.

The staff, my arrival in the dead of winter in November 1979, Santa Claus gave me a lift from the commissary, my very first volksmarch, DAS BOOT/THE BOAT, first trip to the Netherlands, second trip to the Netherlands, trip to Camp Ederle, Italy, flying on the general's plane, the pilots, the official parties, remembering COLONEL BERRY, REMEMBERING GENERAL FREDERICK J. KROESEN.

...



Serving Under the V Corps EO Office False Flag
Was I in Germany or the Backwoods of Mississippi?

PART 1 - GRADUATION FROM THE DEFENSE EQUAL OPPORTUNITY MANAGEMENT INSTITUTE 

I graduated from the Defense Equal Opportunity Management Institute (DEOMI) at Patrick Air Force Base, Cocoa Beach, Florida, in the top 10 

percent of my class. The intense training at DEOMI in human relations, equal opportunity, and diversity tested me in ways I never thought possible. It reshaped and molded me into a teacher, a mentor, a psychiatrist, a mediator, and more of a leader than...



HER NAME WAS MARIA
Remembering my Landlady in Germany

HER NAME WAS FRAU MARIA RINDER

In 1991, I was in the Army assigned to the 527th Military Intelligence Battalion in Kaiserslautern, Germany. I lived in Wielerbach, a small village 7 kilometers (about 5 miles) northeast of Kaiserslautern. Weilerbach was a convenient 20-minute commute from my unit on Vogelweh Kaserne. 

Maria was my landlady. She and her husband, Gerhardt, owned the beautiful two-story home in Weilerbach. I rented the downstairs apartment on one side of thei...



Chapter 42 Dealing with the Neighborhood Bully
Learning a Lesson in Compassion

Sometimes God takes us through a learning process. I believe He uses us to teach us a lesson or to teach others a lesson. I remember learning about compassion and what it meant. The lesson I learned changed my life, and I was never the same.

I grew up in The Big Easy, another moniker for New Orleans. I was around 8 or 9 years old. The time was the mid-50s in mid-June in New Orleans, a city known for hot, sultry summers with brutal humidity. I was used to the stifling summer temperatures, which seld...




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