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By Spc. Adam Parent
U.S. Army Central
He visited a recruiter on a whim with a friend who was unfortunately ineligible for service at the time, said Day. When Day heard about the benefits available for a prospective college student he was immediately interested and began the process to enlist in the Massachusetts Army National Guard.
While he may have originally joined the Army to pay for a college education, over the years Day realized how much he loved being a Soldier.
“I like being a Soldier,” said Day. “I like doing Army stuff, I like serving my country, and I definitely enjoy the benefits that come with all that.”
Day credits the Army with helping him develop the skills necessary to overcome many of the challenges he has faced in his personal life. He has changed jobs, bought his own car, and started college classes after taking time off from school to go on a deployment to Afghanistan.
Besides being proficient in the skills and tasks required of all Soldiers, Day is also experienced in his position as a human resources specialist in the 151st Regional Support Group, Massachusetts Army National Guard, and is currently attached to U.S. Army Central in Camp Arifjan. As part of USARCENT Day has had the opportunity to work as the main mail clerk in charge of the mail room which distributes letters and packages to hundreds of personnel stationed at Camp Arifjan.
This opportunity has provided Day with unique challenges to overcome as a specialist in charge of an entire section with limited physical support from other Soldiers.
“My favorite part about this job is the autonomy that I get down here,” said Day. “I take care of everything that has to be done. I enjoy it, I'm left to my own devices for the most part. But as long as the work gets done and as long as everyone gets their mail, it's fantastic. I love doing it.”
Day shares the building he works in with Staff Sgt. Timothy Kyle, the unit mail room noncommissioned officer in charge for Headquarters Service Company, 28th Infantry Division, Task Force Spartan. They don't work together directly, but Kyle has an appreciation for the work Day does for USARCENT.
“He's as helpful as a person could be,” said Kyle. “He's very smart. He knows his mail and he knows his people.”
During his deployment in Kuwait, Day has worked hard to develop himself as a future leader in the Army. He is taking the lessons he is learning from leading his own section autonomously and from attending the Basic Leader Course at Camp Buehring to prepare himself for more responsibilities as he progresses in his career with the Army.
“In five years I intend to either be a 1st lieutenant or a captain, or an E-6 or an E-7,” said Day.
Spc. James Day does not know if he will stay in the same military occupational specialty or in the National Guard, but he does know he plans to stay in the Army for a full career as a leader of Soldiers.
U.S. ARMY RESERVE
DEPT. OF DEFENSE
U.S. CENTRAL COMMAND
DEPT. OF HOMELAND SECURITY
BEST WARRIOR COMPETITION