Posted on Jan 20, 2015
TSgt Kevin Buccola
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The reason why I ask is simple… I was asked recently why I “only” retired as an E-6 Technical Sergeant. Then this person kept asking if I was a problem child or just could not pass the test. I laughed and then explained.
I explained that I was not a problem child and I can pass any test I want – but that I was happy at that rank. It was not about money or supervision or anything. I just enjoyed working and being where I was in my career. Plain and simple…then I asked him…Was I wrong in what I did? Should I have strived to be more? I said no – I think I did everything right for me – I accomplished more than I ever thought I could in 20 years. Think about that for a minute.
Posted in these groups: Transitioning to civilian career 550x373 Military Industry
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PV2 Senior Web Designer, Web Team Lead
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TSgt Kevin Buccola This is a good thread. I think sometimes people get hung up on rank defining the person. I was only a private when I was in, but that doesn't mean I don't have leadership skills or abilities. I ran my own firm for almost 13 years prior to moving to federal govt and sat on the executive board of directors for a chamber of commerce, as well as other nonprofits. I sort of feel like folks look at my profile and think I'm a washout because of the rank. I am proud of my service albeit short, but there's more to me than meets the eye.
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PV2 Senior Web Designer, Web Team Lead
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Well said. I would agree SPC Donald Moore
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SGM Mikel Dawson
SGM Mikel Dawson
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Were you happy? Did you do your job to the best of your ability? We are all different and I guess that's the reason we all do things differently. Ever wonder why the base of a pyramid is so wide and big? Because a large base is needed to support the tiny little top. I think my first two questions will define the person and their job.
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PV2 Senior Web Designer, Web Team Lead
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I was happy for the most part and yes I did my job the best of my ability. I do pride myself on that.
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PO2 Jonathan Scharff
PO2 Jonathan Scharff
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PV2 (Join to see) I don't think you'll find many on this site who judge people only by their military rank. Especially since many of us have been out for most of our lives now. For me it has been almost 30 years! (Don't tell anyone that lol). While I am proud of what I did in the service to this great nation, I hope I have accomplished other things in the past three decades. What am I most proud of? Raising my three boys, now men, to be successful, respectful, and honorable. I thank you for your service!
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CW4 Brigade Maintenance Officer
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I often use an expression, "Not all money is good money."

You simply can't put price tags on happiness, self confidence, great relationships, having no regrets, and personal pride!

Sounds like you hit those areas in your career, regardless of your rank or paycheck....keep on smiling!
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TSgt Kevin Buccola
TSgt Kevin Buccola
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Thank you for your reply
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CPT(P) Cgsc Student
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TSgt Kevin Buccola, military rank does not define you... unless you let it. Some people put a lot of focus and energy into progressing through the rank system and others do not. Sometimes you see retirees who still use thier rank (think of the 'experts' you see on news shows). As in your case, for other people, rank is less important to them.

Personally, I find myself somewhere in the middle. I'm proud to have progressed through the enlisted ranks (E1-E8), but I had no problem "starting over" in the Officer Corps. I'm asked constantly by NCOs (and some officers) why I would transition so late knowing that I'll likely retire as a Captain instead of a Command Sergeant Major. For me, it was an easy decision. For me, it's more about the journey, than it is about the destination. I wouldn't change a thing.

Something else we must consider though is that not everyone thinks like we do. People will see that you were "only" a TSgt when you retired, just as they'll see that I was "only" a CPT and they'll assume something went wrong.
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TSgt Kevin Buccola
TSgt Kevin Buccola
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Well said and thank you - No rank does not define me nor does my current career status. Thank you and I wish you the best.
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