I'm Specialist Luis Estrada; I am a Civil Affairs Specialist, United States Army Reserve.
I joined the Army Reserve about approximately a years and a half ago. I served eight years in the Marine Corps and I wanted a change. I wanted to see what the Army Reserve would be like for me, what it would offer me. And so far I've loved every part of it.
As a civilian job, I do plumbing. It's a field that I'm pretty new to. I've been lucky to have that opportunity and I love my job. If we go to a providence and there's a providence that needs a water-well or there's a providence that needs a sewage line, I believe I would have some Intel as far as what need to be done. And that's where my civilian job really comes I handy.
Balancing my life as an Army reservist and my civilian life, it's pretty easy. We have our battles assembly's that are planned out, I have my civilian life that's planned out, it's a day-by-day. When it comes time for me to come to the battle drill, I'm ready for it.
The skills that I've learned in the Armed Forces and being in the United Stated Army Reserve has helped me a lot in my civilian life, it's helped me a lot with my marriage, its helped me a lot being a good father. And now I succeed in whatever challenge gets put in front of my face.
Comradery goes along way. It's one thing that the military always has. It's the brotherhood that's always going to be there. When you feel comfortable with the Soldiers that you train with, with the fellow Soldiers you're going to risk your life for when you're out there, you understand that we're all there for each other and its that comradery that makes everything stronger, it makes you feel like you got that family. Wherever you are, wherever you deploy you know that you have your brothers with you and all it does is make your whole team a lot stronger.
What I like most about being a United States Army Reserve is that you still get to do all the training. I still get to go out in the field. Still having the weekends here, still having that time with family back at home with your friends. It's like living the dream pretty much for me.
I do plan on doing my 25 years in the United States Army Reserve and I do plan on leading my own Soldiers into combat one day. And once you join brotherhood, once you join this family, once you join the United States Army you're always going to want to be a part of it.