Sgt. Alder Ray Nash
Ray Nash will never forget those words at the beginning of a letter he received from the President of the United States of America, November 1972. It simply began with, “Greetings from the President of the United States. Your friends and neighbors have chosen you…..” and his life was changed forever.
Because of the U. S. Selective Service Lottery Draft, Ray was one of the first Dragons to be chosen for military service in the United States Army at age 19. For those of you who are not old enough to know what “TV Rabbit Ears” are, you will have to google: U. S. Selective Services History for a better understand of the draft.
When it came to being “All Ray Could Be……..” and having an opportunity to see the world at the same time, the Army was his answer. Ray did tours of duty at: Ft Ord (Monterey Bay, California), Fort Gordon, (Augusta, Georgia), Bad K, (Germany), Fort Sam Houston, (San Antonio, Texas), Fort Sill Army Base, (Lawton, Oklahoma), Camp Casey, (South Korea), and a couple of stops that if he told you about them, he would have to kill you.
Ray received many accommodations during his six (6) years of service. The Meritorious Service Award, Army Accommodation Medal and others to mention a few, but the one he takes the most pride in is his “Good Conduct Medal”, which simply means he did NOT go to jail while serving his country. With the “eye of an eagle”, he earned his Expert Marksman Badge in basic training and went on to Sniper training.
Ray spent his last year of duty at Ft Sill, Lawton, Oklahoma. While at this, his last stop, in full-filling his service commitment to his country, Ray coached three sports: Football, Softball and Basketball. His company’s basketball team finished runner-up for the 1979 season. This goes to show that there is a time to fight and a time to play. It’s all about balance.