the BIG day – Graduation from Basic!

July 18, 2008 · Filed Under Basic Training, Military Parents 

Progress and Graduation:

And the countdown continues!  You worry, and hope for that call (by the way, this is something you’ll be doing for a long time!) Progress is hard to judge, since you aren’t getting calls or letters. BUT – the military thought of this.  There are sites for you to check on what the class is doing – see their schedule and wonder how they pack it all in.  There are links to the sites listed below

SSM: Most units have a web page where you can at least access a syllabus of their training regimen week by week and track their progress towards “graduation”.  And whatever you do — if you can make the graduation — DO IT! You’ll never regret it.

Lela:  parents can get a lot of info on what mail to do (or not do) from the websites, as well as training schedules.  The site really helped me deal with the “no news is good news” part of wondering why my son didn’t write.  I looked at his schedule, saw how chock full it was, or that there was a test coming up, and it eased the worry.


Finally – it ends.  They are graduating, and it’s impressive! Now – the graduation date can change.. a few times.  Keep an eye on the website!

The DAY:  First, you meet up at the barracks.. and it’s hard to recognize your recruit!    There are rules that the recruit cannot leave post before graduation.  In some cases, they need a “post pass” to be able to leave the company area – on Knox you can hit the museum, or the bowling alley (which was packed with parents, recruits, brothers and sisters, girlfriends, wives, kids… a very happy place) They have curfew, and cannot drink alcohol. Don’t let them get into trouble on the last night.. because they can and have been set back at the last minute.

They have made battle buddies that they may or may not see again, but for that time, that place, they were closer than anyone else can imagine.  They grew up, lost weight, are suddenly amazingly polite and stand at parade rest when talking to you,  they made a huge decision and are making more every day.

The ceremony is done as only the military can do it.  Marching, music.. and then they put their hands up and take that oath.  There were a lot of tears during that ceremony.. a lot of tears and memories.  Remembering that little boy who learned to ride a bike, the little girl getting on the school bus for the first time by herself, the child who went away to Scout camp, all grown up now.  It was a moment none of us will ever forget.


ARMY The Army site Ft. Jackson Ft. Knox Ft. Leonard Wood Ft. Sill Ft. Benning

NAVY Naval Service Command – Great Lakes

MARINES Parris Island San Diego

AIR FORCE Air Force – Lackland

COAST GUARD Cape May – Coast Guard


3 Responses to “the BIG day – Graduation from Basic!”

  1. Biermann on July 19th, 2008 3:51 am

    I highly suggest (if you can make it) to attend their graduation! It does mean a lot to them and it instills that pride and duty to country that they originally had when they joined up. It makes them think what they just went through was worth it. Been there done that!

  2. lela on July 21st, 2008 4:03 pm

    I concur with Biermann! Pull out any stops to get to your kid’s graduation from Basic! You show them that you’re proud of them and their choice to serve. You show them that you support them in their decision. When your there, you cry, you beam with pride, and you hear about the traditions of the service you kid has chosen, but most of all you’re there for your kid. It’s worth every penny of the cost of travel (even with today’s prices) for you’re kid to know you’re there for him (or her). For me, it was really something (and kind of bittersweet) for me to realize my little boy had grown into a man. But I was so proud of him, and it showed!

  3. Maura van der Linden on August 4th, 2008 2:08 am

    I returned last night from my son’s OSUT Turning Blue and Graduation ceremonies. It was expensive (3 people from Washington state to Ft. Bennning, GA) but SO worth it. I don’t regret a single penny of expense or minute of time.

    My son had changed and yet was still himself. I was so proud and I wanted him to know how very proud we all were.

    I felt sad for the men whose families had been unable to attend, really.

    Now to be the best Army Mom I can be.

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