Interview with Patrick Grube

Abigail Miller, Interviewer | 1322
UW-Madison Campus Voices | Badger Veterans

0:00No transcript.

0:02 - Introduction

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0:31 - Responding to missile threats from North Korea

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Partial Transcript: Start with just, you know-- Can you tell me-- You mentioned when we first met that you had--

Segment Synopsis: Patrick Grube (PG) was at the end of a deployment on a destroyer in the Pacific Ocean when North Korea began issuing missile threats aimed at Hawaii. His destroyer was the closest one with the capability of shooting down missiles; their deployment was extended and they were stationed off the coast of the Korea for two months.

Keywords: deployment; Hawaii; missile defense; North Korea; Southeast Asia; US Navy; USS Russell

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4:27 - Usually Japan-based ships responds to North Korea

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Partial Transcript: In kind of going off that, have you ever had to do stuff like that?

Segment Synopsis: Some instances were off the record, but there were a couple of other times he was stationed off of the Koreas. They conducted scenarios in the Mediterranean in the case other countries started shooting missiles.

Keywords: Hawaii; Mediterranean Sea; missile defense; North Korea; Southeast Asia; U.S. Navy; USS Russell

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6:43 - Describes USS Russell

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Partial Transcript: I don't know, can you maybe talk a little more about the ship in and of itself?

Segment Synopsis: PG was stationed on a destroyer, the U.S.S. Russell. He talked about the role of the destroyer and how it was a jack of all trades. He detailed the difference between a flight 1 and a flight 2 destroyer, and talked about the history of the destroyer, from World War II to the present. He mentioned a mission he went on to guard an Iraqi oil platform; only the U.S.S. Russell had anti-air capabilities. Nevertheless, the carriers could order his ship around, because destroyers have Captains on board while carriers have Admirals. His ship is used for night air missions because of their mask lights.

Keywords: anti-submarine; Arleigh Burke destroyer; Flight I destroyer; missiles; US Navy; USS Russell; WWII

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11:55 - Enlistment process

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Partial Transcript: I personally am also just curious about enlistment and if, like-- what you go through...

Segment Synopsis: PG entered the Navy during his senior year in high school; he went through a late-entry program. He was 17 years old and his parents had to sign the forms. He went to the nearby Navy base for physical training, and went through physical check-ups to make sure he kept in shape. PG was sent to Basic Training a year late due to this program. He talked with the recruiter to determine what he wanted to specialize in, deciding on electronics and computers. He had a choice where he would be stationed and decided on Pearl Harbor in Hawaii.

Keywords: boatswain's mate; boot camp; Delayed Entry Program; enlistment; ITA School; Pearl Harbor; U.S. Air Force; U.S. Navy

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19:28 - Choosing to re-enlist or be discharged

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Partial Transcript: When you're actually in the fleet and you're actually on the ship - like toward the end there--

Segment Synopsis: Grube reached the end of his contract and began thinking about whether he wanted to reenlist or be discharged. The Navy has a website that he used to check open positions around the world. As an electronics specialist, he would have to take a shore rotation, unless he wanted to volunteer for Iraq or Afghanistan. He wanted a position in Sicily, but the transfer there was too costly and would require a one year deployment to Iraq or Afghanistan. PG was burning out and wanted some down time, but there were no open positions he wanted, so he chose to be discharged and started going to school at the University of Wisconsin – Madison.

Keywords: shore duty; Sigonella, Sicily; U.S. Navy

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21:56 - Discharge process and transition

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Partial Transcript: And I'm still a little curious about getting out of the Navy and kind of the process of getting out--

Segment Synopsis: PG admitted that transitioning out of the military is not easy. If a soldier is lucky, he or she can take a short class to help the transition between military and civilian life. If unlucky, he or she receives no preparation. PG was deployed at the end of his service and used the leave he had accumulated to take a month off and start the transition process. He was sent back from the Persian Gulf about a week early in order to start his medical checkups and paperwork. In terms of programs and benefits, PG had less access than some when he returned to Wisconsin because there is one Naval Base with limited resources. He found the local county Veteran's office helpful. It helped him figure out which benefits he was qualified for. Grube mentioned organizations that help veterans with different aspects of benefits and civilian life, and that many campuses also have resources for veterans.

Keywords: discharge process; Dryhootch; IAVA; Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America; TAP; Transition Assistance Program; U.S. Navy; veterans affairs office; veterans benefits; Wounded Warrior Project

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30:09 - Post 9/11 GI Bill

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Partial Transcript: Maybe going along those lines, are you using any of the bills that are currently out?

Segment Synopsis: Grube is using the Post 9/11 G.I. Bill. He talked about the Montgomery G.I. Bill, which he signed up for during Basic Training, as well as boosters. He chose the Post 9/11 G.I. Bill because it pays for school, gives a housing allowance, provides and money for books. He briefly discussed the original G.I. Bill passed during World War II; studies have shown that it reaped between two and eight times the upfront cost through the employment of the soldiers because they paid taxes over time. Grube called both past and present Bills great recruiting tools because they guarantee education to people who might not otherwise afford it.

Keywords: boosters; Montgomery GI Bill; Post 9/11 GI Bill; veterans benefits

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33:14 - Wisconsin GI Bill

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Partial Transcript: Is there just like anything else that comes to mind?

Segment Synopsis: PG discussed the Wisconsin G.I. Bill and its origins. Combined with the Montgomery G.I. Bill, it was roughly equivalent to the Post 9/11 G.I. Bill. Anyone from Wisconsin who served in the military could use it, regardless of whether they were already using a federal G.I. Bill. A clause in the Wisconsin G.I. Bill pushed people to go to school in another state, then return and use the Wisconsin G.I. Bill for graduate school. Governor Walker removed that clause, and is trying to open the G.I. Bill to more people. Currently, a veteran has to be a resident to qualify during their service, so Grube was paying Wisconsin state taxes while in the Navy, but he knew about the Wisconsin G.I. Bill and knew it would be beneficial in the future to keep his Wisconsin residency.

Keywords: Governor Jim Doyle; Governor Scott Walker; Montgomery GI Bill; University of Wisconsin System; veterans benefits; Wisconsin GI Bill; Wisconsin residency

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37:00 - Navy traditions and character-building

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Partial Transcript: I personally don't really have any more questions.

Segment Synopsis: Grube had a lot he could expand on, but talked a little about Navy initiation rituals and their history, including the 'Crossing the Line', also known as the 'Pollywog to Shellback.’ He detailed the history of the initiation, and the initiation itself. The initiation started as a way to have fun during tough times, and continues because it is tradition. Other Naval traditions carry over, such as ranks between countries. There are universal signs to determine the rank of many people within the Navies of different countries. He finished with his view on veterans from other wars, and his respect for every veteran.

Keywords: Crossing the Line; military rank; Pollywog to Shellback; US Navy; veterans; Vietnam War; WWII

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45:50 - End of Interview

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