Skip to comments.One of 10 draftees still in Army retires
Posted on 03/29/2007 3:05:36 PM PDT by Rodney King
One of 10 draftees still in Army retires by By The Associated Press Print Story Email Story FORT BLISS, Texas -- Robert Rangel was a college student trying to "fly below the radar" when his draft number came up in 1967.
"I got caught," he said with a wide smile.
Caught, as it turns out, for 40 years.
Chief Warrant Officer Rangel was one of just 10 draftees still in the Army when he retired Wednesday, according to Fort Bliss officials. It was unclear whether the other draftees have served as long as Rangel; the draft ended in 1973.
Rangel, of El Paso, said the prospect of being drafted was terrifying after watching numerous friends "coming home in coffins."
But he opted to stay well beyond the required two-year hitch because "I started enjoying my job and the people I worked with."
He's been deployed to nine combat zones, from Vietnam to the Persian Gulf. Maj. Gen. Robert Lennox, the Fort Bliss commanding general, described Rangel as the "foremost expert" on air defense systems at the West Texas post, the current home of the Air Defense Artillery Center.
Michael Zaborowski, a retired lieutenant colonel who has known Rangel for more than a decade, said he has long been impressed by his dedication. "I did 20 years and I thought that was a lot," he said.
Rangel retired a few months before his 62nd birthday, when he would have been forced to do so under Army regulations.
His mother, who attended his retirement ceremony, was relieved the day had finally come. "That was a long time that I worried," Adelina Rangel said softly.
Rangel's years in the Army included more than 200 parachute jumps with a special forces unit in Vietnam and Cambodia, time in battle zones, a firsthand view of the crumbling of the Berlin Wall and a tour in the first Gulf War.
Now his priority is to take care of his mom and tackle some projects.
Tops on the list is restoring a 1964 Plymouth Sport Fury. He parked it in his mom's barn when he went off to basic training.
It means you've been commissioned an Officer, usually 2LT. (01)
I was good ole # 33 .Me and Rolling rock, perfect together!
IIRC: In the Navy (Late 60's) there was a path from WO-2 to O-1 but not after that. Then they wanted you to go on PBRs.
You could have volunteered for the draft, right?
I once saw a SMA dressdown an O-7 General for him cutting some troops to the front of the line because he needed a tent put up while my unit had a hot mission on-going for the past 20 hours, first time I had ever seen that, gave me even more respect for Sergeant Majors. As far as a CWO's go I always was respectful and treated them like an officer.
You need to have completed a 4 year degree to be eligible to become a commissioned officer (but there are always exceptions!)
Belkieve it or not, a good buddy of mine did the exact same thing as you while we were half-way through basic training at Ft. Polk.
That's was one weak O7. I hope he didn't make two stars.
I've been an Electronic Tech since '72..The Radar I worked on was all tube except a 300 volt PS that used 4 diodes in a bridge for the locale oscilator,,those were the days,,don't know electron flow unless you know tube theory and to me thats a fact,,just retired from the Fed Govt. in '04 at FT Rucker (Army Aviation Center),know that CW 5's exist..I believe pilots need prior college to be accepted,not in the area I was in..
"You could have volunteered for the draft, right?"
You don't "volunteer for the draft".
You just volunteer.
I served with guys who volunteered for the draft. They had a "US" serial number and served two years like the rest of the draftees.
"You could have volunteered for the draft, right?"
I don't think you know how funny that statement is,,brought a smile to my face.
Exceptions like OCS (Army OCS,at least).In '69 while in BCT they tried to convince me to apply to OCS.My reply was "Go f**k yourself.....Sir".
I had just finished high school when I joined and had never set foot in a college.Of course things may have changed since then.
You need to read all the post before you reply. When I was in the Army there were only 4 grades of Warrent. I have been notified from several sources that there is now a W0-5. I have already acknowledged this and appologized. It helps to keep up with regs and new ranks, which I haven't done. Thanks anyway.
I stand corrected,,never heard of it,,could they pick their MOS or were they assigned one??
They "volunteered" for the draft????
How did they do that????
Did they travel back in time and change their birthdates
to correspond to a lower numbered ping-pong ball????
They just "volunteered".
They DID NOT "volunteer for the draft".
You obviously didn't serve back then, but yes it is oxymoronic. (don't think that's a word)
If you enlisted it was a minimum of three years AD. By volunteering for the draft (starting with your local draft board) you served two.
Not a smile but a snicker. I think the guy is arguing semantics.
The ping pong ball were used only during the lottery years. (69-71 I believe.)
THAT WOULD BE ME !
Ha! Good thing you included the "Sir"! When I was in the USAF in the 90's, they were RIFing officers right and left, so the requirements were a little more strict.
You know, I had just asked my wife about the rank structure of the Australian Defence Forces when I saw your post . . . . .
Lets cut this out and have a beer.
Ok, thank you
If you only agreed to the two years you took what they gave you based on your test scores. CWO Rangel could just have easily volunteered for the draft and once he saw the opportunities and his apptitude test scores he then could opt for a longer school and a better MOS. If I were able to talk to him I know exactly how he did what he did. At the time you needed a GT score of 120 to go to flight school and 115 for OCS.
Well I wasnt privy to every word but when I heard the General say "they are needed to put a tent up for me" the SMA just flipped, "are you f'ng kidding me sir, these mean have been doing flips the last 20 hours and have 20 more to go......"
They don't do too bad.
Well, the Warrant Officers I know think they are God, so I guess he would be Chief God.
(Just kidding, WO's)
wow. No idea you could make that much $$$ if you were not an admiral.
LOL, ya beat me!
Actually those charts are a little outdated too.
You don't get much pay in the lower ranks, but you do pretty well when (if) you move up.
I bet it started right up, too!
Well for commisioned officers ... 4 year degree requirement for all branches.
Warrant officers need 60 hours credit or something like that as of the 90's (last time I looked into it).
Higher level enlisteds in leadership positions are called Non-commisioned officers.
The commision is like a contract from the government granting the rank and detailing broad duties. Warrants are similar but more for technical skills.
Helicopter pilots are generally warrant officers in the army. Almost all helo pilots in the Marines are commissioned officers however.
Warrants apparently derive from English Naval Rank.
I'm sorry, instead of "title" I meant ranks but couldn't think of it when I posted.
It is about to rain here, big booming thunder some 56 miles south of Big D...
Yep, that cow is about to do it to that flat rock!
You obviously didn't serve back then,
Kiss my lily white butt,RA '71-'79..Dip Stick...!
That's the first thing I noticed.
When I was in the Marine Corps, Warrant Officers were generally addressed as either "Gunner" or "Mister". They were definitely called "sir".
When I was in the Army, I don't recall ever hearing anyone call a Warrant Officer "sir".
Heh...they were still teaching vacuum tube theory at NAS Memphis in 1974 when I went through there..
"An officer in a free uniform."
An officer who doesn't need a tailor...
cannot afford a tailor,
badly tailored officer, etc. etc.
"An Army Pilot"
"A soldier allowed into the Officer's Club."
A man who knows too much to be an officer, but not enough to be a Master Sergeant."
"An expert on something that embarrasses the rest of the Army."
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.