|Staff Sgt. Charles Miller|
CAMP VIRGINIA, Kuwait -- Staff Sgt. Charles Miller, a 12-year veteran in the U.S. Army's 130th Engineer Brigade, re-enlisted with some ceremony at the brigade's tactical operations center on March 27, reaffirming his commitment to the army in the middle of a campaign, in a deployed unit in the middle of a war.
"The war has made me more inclined to re-enlist. I haven't had any doubt about it," says the Columbia, S.C. native. " I love the army -- not the situation -- but it's not bad," he says.
Master Sgt. Clay Gregory, the senior career counselor for the brigade, says Miller, who works in food services, was taking advantage of a relatively new arrangement that lets veterans with 10 years experience or more sign up for an indefinite term that could take them all the way to their retirement, rather than continue signing up for hitches three years at a time. He says the indefinite re-enlistment program encourages retention of the most senior people in the brigade, although "very few of these occur downrange."
All activity in the brigade's operations center paused for the ceremony, which was performed in front of an American flag held aloft by two of Miller's comrades-in-arms.
ENR Associate Editor Tom Sawyer filed this story and others from Iraq while embedded with Engineer Brigade of U.S. Army's Third Infantry Division.