The formative years in which many of us grew up were filled with slaying bodies. Piling bodies higher than giraffe...higher than Ozzy Osbourne and Steven Tyler. Veterans used to run the world. We were "jolly green giants, with guns." Time happened to many of us all and we left the service, went back to the world and got regular jobs.These are the stories of ten such veterans.(All accounts are fictional and any similarity to any real persons is a total coincidence, some of the places are made up too).Ryan Andrews - Lance Corporal, USMCAt the ripe old rank of senior Lance Corporal, Ryan found himself in the sunny tropical city of Nasiriyah. Beautiful town that it was, it had a few issues, things like IED's and dudes with RPG's trying to kill Ryan and his homies. On one fine day, a group of assholes tried to ambush Ryan and his Mobile Assault Platoon. Bad idea. Ryan was on the .50 cal and mowed insurgents down as quickly as they appeared from the alley. When the dust cleared, Ryan had made a makeshit (it's a "make shit" wall because they're insurgents) wall of about 10 insurgents. Badass. Ryan now owns several FedEx stores in and around Des Moines, Iowa.Mary Beth Simmons - Captain, USAFSay what you will about drone pilots, but Mary Beth racked up kills via the hellfire missiles her Reaper drone carried. Day in, day out Mary Beth flew missions and eradicated ISIS scum from the Earth. Albeit from a nice airconditioned bunker in the continental United States, but still, slew ISIS by the truckload. Mary Beth got out of the Air Force after her contract was up, and now teaches Kindergarten in Bellaire, Connecticut.
Carl Jenkins - Specialist, USACarl liked tanks. Carl was the gunner on his M1A2 Abrams tank. There were insurgents shooting at Carl's tank from a building. Silly insurgents, AK-47's can't hurt an Abrams. Carl took steady aim and kaboom. No more building, no more insurgents. Such was life in Ramadi. Carl got out and became a painter. You can find his work on Etsy.Joe Crockett - Special Warfare Operator 2nd Class, USNJoe earned his Trident, which is pretty badass in and of itself. But this one time in Afghanistan, Joe and his team quietly entered a building and snagged this Taliban commander. Noone outside could warn the occupants of the house, cause Joe had slit all of their throats. Joe left the Navy after 12 years and now coaches Pee-Wee football in his hometown of Liberty, Texas.
Richard Johnson - Sergeant, USMCMarine Corps snipers are among the best in the world if not THE best (nobody cares, Canada, nobody cares). Good ole Dick Johnson and his spotter took out those pesky Taliban fighters with one shot, one kill, every time. He accumulated 35 confirmed kills before leaving the Marine Corps. He now owns and operates his own floral shop, with 24/7 delivery in Boise, Idaho.Beverly O'Reilly - Hospitalman 2nd Class USCG/USNBeverly used to be on the boarding crew while in the Coast Guard, she has 15 successful interdictions/boarding missions to her name, but then after getting out of the Coast Guard, Beverly went and got a real job as a United States Navy Corpsman.Bryan Dawes - Sergeant, USALife as an airborne Ranger was good. When we say good, we mean Bryan Dawes was literally death from above. On one raid, Dawes was credited with killing 6 insurgents with his rifle and 1 with the Bowie knife he brought from home. As the wars dwindled down, Bryan left the Army, got his MBA and is now Vice President of Customer Service for a Fortune 500 company.Steven Jones - Lieutenant, USNSteven "Rush" Jones, was in the business of putting warheads on foreheads as an F/A- 18 pilot with four deployments to Iraq/Afghanistan. Buildings, trucks, tanks...you name it, "Rush" probably destroyed it. Steven left the Navy shortly after 2011, earned his Masters in English Literature and is teaching English at the local community college.
Louis Willis Jr. - Hospitalman 2nd Class, USNIn Afghanistan, Doc Willis was known for giving little to no f***s about his own safety when it came to his Marines. Doc once darted out from cover to an intersection being peppered with AK and RPK fire and administered first aid to one of his Marines who'd been hit, then dragged the Marine to safety while providing his own cover fire with his pistol. Doc left the Navy after his second enlistment, went to Medical School and is now a pediatrician in Tampa, Florida.Aaron Garcia - Staff Sergeant, USAFWhile Aaron was in the Air Force he served as a crew chief on the UH-60 Pave Hawk helicopters, from Afghanistan to Iraq and back to Afghanistan again. One fine day Garcia's bird came under attack from AK, RPK, and RPG fire. The Taliban and Al Qaeda fighters forgot one key piece of information. Aaron had an M134 minigun at his disposal. As the pilots evaded the fire as best they could Aaron painted the valley floor red. Good times. Aaron made one more deployment to Afghanistan before getting out. He is now a Physical Therapist in Boulder, Colorado.Just goes to show you never know who you're sitting next to...