13 Tell-Tale Signs You're A Paratrooper - We Are The Mighty
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13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper

The maroon beret on your truck dash and the airborne wings tattooed to your chest are pretty good indicators that you’re a paratrooper. Still, if you want more proof, just check yourself for these common symptoms of airborne.


Also Read: 13 Signs You’re An Infantryman

1. You consider any day that you get to exit an aircraft a good day.

Paratrooper in front of a mountain
What a view!

2. You’re always prepared to deploy.

3. You believe jumping is a group activity.

Paratroopers jumping together
A member of the 82nd Airborne Division and British paratrooper prepare to jump from a tethered balloon in preparation for a jump into Sainte-Mere-Eglise, France, on on the 40th anniversary of D-day, the invasion of Europe.

4. You don’t think it’s fast unless it can be anywhere in the world in 18 hours.

5. A lot can happen before you get excited.

Navy Seal Paratrooper
I mean, you jump out of planes. It’s hard to top that.

6. If you walk away, you figure it went pretty well.

7. You buddy rig.

8. You’re pretty obsessed with your fitness.

Soldiers exercising
Gotta prepare for everything and anything.

9. When someone messes up, you assume they’re a NAP, or “Not A Paratrooper”.

10. You “double time.” Every. Damn. Morning.

11. And every run starts with that cadence, “C-130 flying over division!”

12. You honestly believe you’ll meet a woman with a “Jumpers, hit it!” tattoo.

Female paratroopers
Keep dreamin’.

13. You won’t stop talking about airborne.

Paratroopers launching from a plane
But honestly, why would you?

NOW: These Are The Best Pictures From The Military This Week

OR: The 7 Thoughts That Go Through Your Head When You Can’t Find Your Rifle

Articles

The 13 funniest military memes of the week

Memes are the internet’s Motrin and water. They’re used for everything though they solve nothing. Here are 13 new ones to get you through that shattered femur.


1. Backseat drivers are the worst (via Air Force Memes Humor).

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
That one didn’t even bring a map.

2. Just wear one of those strips on your nose (via Sh*t My LPO Says).

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
It’s really too perfect of a spot to NOT skate in.

SEE ALSO: The US Military took these incredible photos this week

3. It’s not too bad. He has that mattress that conforms to his shape …

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
… wait, no. That’s body armor.

4. When you don’t want your Valentine to escape.

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
That guy does not look very comfortable with this photo shoot.

5. The Air Force has strict testing requirements (via OutOfRegs.com).

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
Tests that apply to the skills they actually use.

6. The Air Force reminds all the haters why they should be jealous (via Military Memes).

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
Make fun of the airmen, but you know you love the aircraft they support.

7. Inter-service rivalry began a long time ago …

(via Marine Corps Memes)

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
… in a galaxy far, far away.

8. When public affairs says they’ve seen stuff (via Sh*t My LPO Says).

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper

9. The vehicles are powered by JP-8.

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
But all soldier move via dip and MRE power.

10. Hearing a sniper rifle means you probably weren’t the target (via 11 Bravos).

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
But still hit the dirt. You could be the next target.

11. Fun fact: The radio was getting a signal on the deck (via Sh*t My LPO Says).

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
The captain just doesn’t like that guy.

12. This is how you get safety briefs.

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
Safety briefs that are a firm 300 meters from the work location. EOD’s orders.

13. Epic battles of joint barracks:

(via Ranger Up)

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
POG’s cant get no love.

NOW: 11 weapons from pop culture we could totally use right now

OR: The 8 most worthless Cobra Commandos

Articles

17 images that perfectly show the misery of returning your gear

Over the past few days, you’ve been collecting exit signatures for your check-out sheet, and low and behold, you’re almost home. The process has been relatively straightforward up until this point.


The last item you need to get signed off is from the Central Issue Facility, or supply, where you need to check in all of your gear. Supply is one of the last stops a service member makes before obtaining their official DD-214.

Sounds easy enough, right?

Wrong. If one aspect of your gear is not check-in ready, integrating back into civilian population will be delayed.

Related: 17 images that show why going to the armory sucks

So check out our list of what it typically takes to check in your gear and move on with your life.

(This is based on many true stories)

1. What it looks like when you’re on your way to the central issue on a Friday afternoon.

Oh, come on. (Images via Giphy)

2.When you walk inside and all you see are other troops waiting in a long a** line.

There’s too many to count. (Images via Giphy)

3. To add insult to injury, everyone who works there looks slow and grumpy.

Why do I hate life? (Images via Giphy)

4. After waiting what felt like an eternity, you finally haul your heavy gear over to the counter and begin the checkout process.

So heavy. (Images via Giphy)

5. You make it to the counter, and just as your morale has been boosted, you realized you’re at the slowest worker’s section.

Please, hurry the f*ck up! (Images via Giphy)

6. The clerk starts to review all your gear, pulling everything out piece-by-piece — most of which you never used.

And we mean most things. (Images via Giphy)

7. After completing the inventory, the clerk finds an issue with your almost squared away paperwork. All of your gear is clean enough to pass, but there’s a missing signature.

No way freakin’ way. (Images via Giphy)

8. Your superior officer’s signature is missing for an expensive piece of gear which got destroyed while you were deployed. The clerk informs you that you can either pay for it yourself or get the signature before you can get out of the military.

You can’t believe what you’re hearing.

I ain’t paying for sh*t. (Images via Giphy)

9. You speed back to your company HQ to find your CO.

Pedal to the metal. (Images via Giphy)

10. You dash into the HQ in search of the man or woman who can set you free.

Where are they? (Images via Giphy)

11. You find your superior, he or she signs the paperwork and then your emotions take over.

This may be wrong but it feels right. (Images via Giphy)

12. Now that you got your signature, it’s time to head back to central issue.

Almost to the finish line. (Images via Giphy)

13. You get back the central issue building and attempt to eyeball the person who helped you earlier to avoid waiting in line again.

Look at me. (Images via Giphy)

Also Read: 33 images that perfectly portray your first 96-hour liberty

15. It worked. The clerk spots you and waves you over. You hand her the signed paperwork, she looks it over and now you wait.

The anticipation grows. (Images via Giphy)

16. The clerk slowly stamps your paperwork. You’re clear.

You want to get mad, but you can’t at this point. (Images via Giphy)

17. You did it! Now go get your DD-214 and move on with your life.

Five years of college here I come. (Images via Giphy)

Lists

7 things your lieutenant is really doing in his office

Nine times out of 10, enlisted troops are glad that their lieutenant’s office is far, far away. However, it’s 1700 and everyone has been standing in formation for 40 minutes – where is he? What kind of boot-tenant sorcery is going on in there? Whoever gave him a map and compass needs to be hazed right now. This is what your lieutenant is really doing in his office.

1. They’re getting pranked

New lieutenants, also known as butter bars and boot-tenants, are at the bottom of the officer totem pole. They may not get hazed like enlisted do but they get messed with like they’re in a fraternity. This one time my Lt. and I were walking into his office discussing upcoming training when he suddenly stops.

‘Not again.’

This man’s whole office furniture is missing. Suddenly, a burst of laughter from down the hall and he gives chase. There’s giggling until moments later I hear Sergeant Major laying into them like they’re back at The Basic School. If your lieutenant is late and flustered, he may have been pranked.

2. They’re taking a nap

An office isn’t exactly a luxury suite, but it makes a better nap location than this.

No judgement here, sneaking a little shut eye during ‘hurry up and wait’ never hurt anyone.

3. They’re stuck talking to the higher ups

When an enlisted troop avoids an officer it’s because they do not feel like giving a salute. When your lieutenant avoids officers it is because they do not want to get dragged into a long-winded conversation with the colonel. You only see the higher ups briefly; they’re stuck with them all day long. Lieutenants will try to interrupt and break contact but the salty ol’ major wants to finish his story about bass fishing first. Meanwhile, the company commander walks in and wants to share his two cents. It becomes an infinite feedback loop of small talk he cannot escape – because they’re in his office.

4. They’re texting

Yes, just like everyone else they own phones and play video games on them. That’s why your leave still isn’t approved.

5. They’re catching up on paperwork

lieutenant doing paperwork

Between getting messed with, held against their will and sitting in endless briefings they still need to do their job. The operations officer wants a roster of everybody who needs to qualify on the rifle range within the next three months, the company executive officer needs a map and five paragraph order for the upcoming field op, the S-4 needs a roster of how many MREs to order, etc. That’s why they’re a pain when it comes to turning information over to them.

6. They’re doing PT

They would rather be with the troops or go to gym but there may be time crunch. That’s why they’re always so eager to hover around the platoon, otherwise it’s burpee time.

7. They’re repacking their gear

Lieutenants have to set the example of how the gear should be packed — unless there is a company or battalion Stand Operating Procedure, guideline, on how thing should be squared away. He’ll likely be there with the platoon sergeant taping every strap, quadruple checking the packing list, and weighing the pack for good measure.

Lists

6 of the best Navy recruiting commercials ranked

Navy recruiters talk a good game to get young prospects to sign multi-year service contracts, but some people need more than words to get motivated. For those young adults out there that need a visual, the Navy filmed inspiring, powerful commercials.


We’ve all seen the posters of Navy ships sailing the seven seas and yes, the idea of becoming a Navy SEAL is pretty badass, but it’s the epic commercials that so often put the final touches on someone’s ultimate decision to make the commitment.

Related: 6 ‘Toys for Tots’ commercials we swear didn’t make us cry

So, check out six of the best Navy recruiting commercials based on how freaking motivating they are.

6. “Live the adventure”

This throwback commercial focuses on young Sailors seeing the world, reaching new heights. We wonder what commercials Maverick from Top Gun watched…

(Darian Glover | YouTube)

5. “100% on watch”

Not only does this commercial feature voiceover from seasoned actor Keith David, this ad also showcases how the U.S. Navy never stops moving — ever.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EEtZ5r0CIYI
(America’s Navy | YouTube)

4. “From the sea to beyond the stars”

This advertisement follows sailors as they’re deployed from submarines to patrol under the sea and from aircraft carrier to literally the edge of the world.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7qtAnL3tB5A
(America’s Navy | YouTube)

3. “Game”

In this ad, a motivated female sailor tells us why joining the U.S. Navy is unlike anything we’ve ever done before. Paired with stunning imagery, this commercial displays the realistic intensity of life in the Navy.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=89Sdz3Dly2A
(America’s Navy | YouTube)

2. “Footprints”

This advertisement is probably the most famous endorsement within the special ops community. It got at least a few of us to join.

(baddersanta18 | YouTube)

Also Read: This is the cheesy ‘Top Gun’ commercial Pepsi made in the 1980s

1. “Around the world. Around the clock.”

The ad plays off of the idea of putting pins on a map to show where you’ve been in the world. The Navy, clearly, has been around.

It’s a badass and motivating commercial.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jHrGr2oAwqI
(SC2 VOD | YouTube)
Lists

8 haunting photos from an abandoned Air Force Base

There is one acronym no commander wants to hear. The very hint of this process-who-must-not-be-named drives generals, congressmen, and entire communities to the edge of panic: BRAC. One abandoned base illustrates why.


The Base Realignment and Closure process started in 1988 as a way to streamline the post-Cold War U.S. military for more efficient and cost-effective defense planning. The commission recommends moving certain military functions to other installations to clear the way to completely closing military bases worldwide. Chanute Air Force Base, Illinois was among the first to go in 1993.

 

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper

Opened in Rantoul, Illinois in 1917 to train pilots flying in World War I, Chanute would become a major training center for pilots and support personnel for 75 years. Today, some of the buildings are repurposed and privately owned but many are left empty and deteriorating, untouched for decades.

Enter Walter Arnold, an North Carolina-based, self-taught fine art photographer and his project “The Art of Abandonment.” In this series, he strives to create nontraditional images and scenes in forgotten, historic places many people will never see.

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper

“These abandoned buildings and locations speak volumes when you enter them, even in their abandoned and decaying state,” Arnold told WATM. “Every room you look into tells a story and every artifact from a bygone era holds years of meaning and lost purpose.”

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper

While he usually gets permission to access abandoned sites, he did not get such permission to get into Chanute. With the help of his brother, he found his way onto the base, braving a rapidly decaying infrastructure, asbestos and rumors of Agent Orange contamination.

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
Interior of White Hall

“Of all the locations that I have showcases online, Chanute has had the most response,” Arnold said. “So many people passed through those hallways and classrooms and so many have connections and memories with this location.”

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper

“It’s my job to create evocative scenes that tell stories and stir emotions and I think these images from Chanute really do just that. There’s a melancholy aspect to my work and a lot of times the same people who see the sadness and shame in letting a building get to this state also see the beauty of what remains and the stories they still hold.”

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper

All photos are used with permission from Walter Arnold. To see more of Chanute AFB or the Art of Abandonment, visit Arnold’s site, The Digital Mirage.

Lists

17 insane Russian military inventions

Russian military inventions tend toward the brutally practical: tanks, planes, and guns that are cheap and easy to produce. But they were also known for experimenting with wacky, expensive concepts. Here are some of their crazier inventions:


17 Insane Russian Military Inventions

More from Ranker

This article originally appeared at Ranker. Copyright 2015. Like Ranker on Facebook.

Lists

6 of the most outrageous WWIII video games, ranked

Predicting the future through popular fiction is always a headache. One specific (and inevitable) war, however, has been the setting for many works of exploratory fiction. Everyone has come up with their own unique twist on how the World War Trilogy is going to end because global audiences demand an over-the-top-ending to their trilogies.


Video games set in a fictional World War III span the range of plausibility and, accordingly, audience reception. Early games, like 1981’s Missile Command, were simple enough as to not raise eyebrows and breathtaking, modern games, like Battlefield 4 and Arma 3take a more down-to-earth approach.

But then there are the absolutely ridiculous games that hinge on insane premises, like that the next World War will involve us fighting our would-be robot overlords by the distant year 2010.

6. Terminator: Salvation (2009)

Yes, we were not-so-subtly pointing at this game. To the Terminator franchise’s credit, they were pretty optimistic about how advanced future technology would be back when the series kicked off in 1984.

But when this game references its own timeline as being “13 years after Judgement Day,” which, according to the films, was on Aug. 29, 1997, they effectively put all of one year between the game’s release and the over-the-top, dystopian futurescape… there’s just no excuse for that silliness.

We could forgive the game’s plot if it wasn’t so bad… even by 2009 standards.

5. Chromehounds (2006)

Like some of the other games on this list, alternate history is used to explain away inconsistencies. Chromehounds is a giant robot simulator that pits three fictional nations against each other that are totally not based on America, the USSR, and the Middle East.

You could customize your mech and choose a nation to fight under in real time against other players. The game was enjoyable while it lasted, but the servers shut down in 2010.

The world needs more customizable mech simulators.

4. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 (2011)

Compared to many of the other first-person shooters set in WWIII, Call of Duty: MW3 upped the ante. Sure, the story follows many of the standard tropes for WWIII — some Russian guy is evil, Europe gets invaded again, and *gasp* nuclear war is threatened.

What made 2011’s installment of Call of Duty so spectacular was that, during the single-player campaign, you got to live out all the action in various roles throughout the world. You play as several characters, all with unique backstories, while you hunt down the big bad.

The ending is just so, so satisfying.

3. Homefront: The Revolution (2016)

Based off the premise that North Korea takes over the world, this game is set in an alternate history where the hermit kingdom’s tech industry isn’t as laughable as it is in our timeline. The game places you in a Red Dawn-esque world where you need to start an underground resistance against Communist invaders.

The game wasn’t without faults — mainly in the narrative and character-development departments — but immersive open-world gameplay, complete weapon customization, and a level of difficulty that made you think through every action made the game stand out.

Wolverines!!!

2. Raid Over Moscow (1984)

Cold War-era games about the Cold War were the best. Originally released on the Commodore 64, Raid Over Moscow‘s story begins when three Soviet nukes launch and you’re the only space-pilot able to stop it. You fight your way through to the Kremlin (which, apparently, was the missile silo for all of the USSR’s nukes) before blowing it up. The most unbelievable thing about this game is that it goes out of its way to explain that America can’t just nuke them back because all US nukes were dismantled.

At the time, the game was fairly controversial. European nations were uneasy about selling a game that directly portrayed the destruction of the Kremlin. Unfortunately for them, the controversy only made European citizens want the game more.

Ahh, the good ol’ days when people feared 8-bit graphics could start an international incident.

1. Command & Conquer: Red Alert 2 (2001)

No WWIII game comes close to offering the same level of enjoyment and ridiculousness as Command & Conquer: Red Alert 2. To cut a very long and very confusing story short, Albert Einstein creates a time machine to kill a young Hitler. This leads the Soviets to grow unchecked and, in their liberty, research mind-control technology. And that’s just the first game.

This time around, you need to fight a psychic Rasputin stand-in — or you could choose to play as the Soviets. This game and its expansion pack, Yuri’s Revenge, are considered classics. You’ll need to play through it to understand, really.

The silly live-action cutscenes just make the game that much more hilarious.

popular

6 things troops always buy after deployment

When troops deploy overseas to places like Iraq and Afghanistan, they usually get a pay increase thanks to combat and hazardous pay bonuses. And given that they are working longer days and away from most of the comforts of home, they usually save a bunch of money in that time.


Usually returning with a large balance in their bank account, they are what some would call “post-deployment rich.”

But that wealth usually doesn’t last forever. Some troops save their money for the future, while others making big purchases soon after they are home. These are the six things they are usually buying.

1. A new car or motorcycle

 

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper

 

The barracks parking lot is guaranteed to be filled with new cars and bikes shortly after a unit returns from deployment. The vehicular staple of the returning Marine, soldier, sailor, or airman usually spans the gamut of Ford Mustang to Jeep Wrangler.

That’s it. The barracks parking lot is just filled with Mustangs and Wranglers. That and a ton of crotch rockets.

2. Post-deployment booze

 

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
Photo Credit: Streetwear Deals

I’m not going to lie. When I came back after a seven-month deployment to Afghanistan, I drank a lot. Think—drinking at a minimum a six-pack of beer every night for months—a lot. Was it healthy? No. A good idea? No. Helpful during morning PT? Oh, good lord no.

But hey, I hadn’t drank in a long time and I had to make up for lost time. At least that made sense in my then-21-year-old brain. My story is not unique, however. While the military tries to crack down on binge-drinking, for many troops, it’s still a big part of the lifestyle.

3. Epic parties in Vegas (or some other awesome place)

When you are post-deployment rich, it’s no problem picking up the tab at the bar. “Oh yeah! I got this,” the young private says. “Drinks are on me!” Come back to this same young private about two months later and he probably won’t be saying this one again.

That’s definitely true of throwing big parties. While they initially start out in the barracks and involve kegs, beer pong, and midget-tossing (no? that’s not allowed Sergeant Major?), the parties eventually head off base to a better location. Sometimes this means the strip club, but let it be known: Las Vegas is always the best option.

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper

 

Just don’t buy the next item while you are drinking.

4. Engagement rings

Spending seven to 12 months (or more) overseas can get some service members thinking about elevating their relationships to the next level of marriage. For some, that means saving up their deployment cash to buy an expensive engagement ring for their honey. Hopefully it all works out, because if it doesn’t, the post-deployment splurge may be spent on…

5. Divorce lawyers are, unfortunately, another common deployment side effect

 

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper

Most service members have heard a horror story or two about a fellow soldier returning home with no greeting at the airport, a completely empty refrigerator (even sans ice cubes), and an empty bank account. The sad homecoming for some troops means one thing: Divorce.

6. Tattoos

There’s a good reason why tattoo parlors are strategically located near military bases. Troops love ink (including this writer). Whether it’s a simple U.S. Army or USMC on your arm to show pride in your service, or a listing of fallen friends, tattoos are a big part of the military culture.

Just make sure you get it spell-checked.

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper

What did you buy right after deployment? Let us know in the comments.

Articles

The 13 Funniest Military Memes This Week

It’s Friday, you know the drill. Here are 13 military memes to make you laugh.


In Alien Guy’s defense, B-2’s are alien aircraft in most airspaces.

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
And they can do nearly as much damage as those Independence Day aliens.

Hey, the weekend is here!

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
Oh, um, I’m sure the weekend will be here soon.

 Now playing at your local recruiter’s office …

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
… the story of a hardened piece of metal and the M16 he loved. And yes, it’s “Twilight.”

That moment when a recruiter’s lies …

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
… are exposed by drill sergeant’s truths.

Loving civilian housing is a kind of mutual attraction.

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
Seriously, a few pastors must spend all their time officiating junior enlisted weddings.

I’m not playing video games, I’m practicing tactics.

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
Warning, no respawns in real life.

Fix your boot display.

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper

Tall tower where your screens and windows will show you everything on base …

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
… except a single set of discharge papers.

I honestly believe he’s made this face in a firefight at least 1/2 a dozen times.

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper

His girlfriend probably requested this costume.

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
Either that, or stolen valor is getting much easier to spot.

There is a way to motivate them!

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
Then he took his fries back.

This is why the Army rarely “asks” for volunteers.

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper

ISIS just keeps looking for soldiers and Marines.

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
We could also fit you in between PT and breakfast chow.

NOW: The Best Military Meals Ready-To-Eat, Ranked 

OR: The 7 Coolest High-Tech Projects The Military Is Currently Working On 

Lists

21 photos of US military legends with their hands in their pockets

There’s one rule that every branch knows of: keep your hands out of your pockets while you’re in uniform.


And yet, here we are. Every branch of the military’s historical leadership has been caught on camera casually chilling with their hands in their pockets.

Makes one wonder when putting your hands in your pockets became unprofessional…

1. General Curtis LeMay

 

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
I don’t think the guy who firebombed Tokyo cares much about rules like that.

2. General of the Armies John J. “Black Jack” Pershing

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
Someone tell the General of the Armies he looks unprofessional.

3. Major General Carl Spaatz

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
That guy down the street is just a taken aback by this as anyone else.

4. Supreme Allied Commander General Dwight D. Eisenhower

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
It’s D-Day, let him have this one.

5. Lieutenant General Lewis B. “Chesty” Puller

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
It actually really was that cold in North Korea.

6. Lieutenant Colonel James “Jimmy” Stewart

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
Mr. Stewart went to Germany. And bombed it.

7. Supreme Allied Commander General Dwight D. Eisenhower…Again.

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
Patton just brought gloves. Like it says IN THE REGS, IKE.

8. Chesty Puller again.

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
C’mon now, that’s jungle. No way is it cold.

9. And again.

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
Welp. Chesty does what he wants.

10. General Martin Dempsey

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
Dempsey back on the block. Apparently.

11. Supreme Allied Commander General Dwight D. Eisenhower needs hand warmers.

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
If that were anyone else, Patton probably would be losing his mind.

12. Sergeant Elvis Presley

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
King of Rock n’ Roll outranks Army Sergeant. Sorry.

13. General of the Army Douglas MacArthur

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
I think MacArthur earned this one.

14. Brigadier General Chesty Puller

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
We get it, Chesty. You do what you want. Fine.

15. Brigadier General Richard Clarke

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
Good thing he’s not a Marine, I guess.

16. Rear Admiral John L. Hall.

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
Patton is just trying not to look right at it.

17. Lieutenant Audie Murphy.

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
Europe was pretty cold in 1944. Everyone else was fine, but Lt. Murphy is special.

18. General Billy Mitchell

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
The Father of the Air Force knows best.

19. General Raymond Odierno

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
Must be super cold there, sir.

20. Chesty Puller does what he wants.

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
But we’d better see your hands, guy behind Chesty.

21. Major General Smedley Butler

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
Two Medals of Honor, two hands in his pockets, zero f*cks.

Lists

The 6 greatest military heroes you’ve never heard of

There are countless military heroes we’ve all read about, but what about the heroes who were never recognized? These six are at the top of the list.

 1. The Polish Resistance Agent who got himself sent to Auschwitz — on purpose

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
Witold Pilecki Photo: Wiki Commons


Nazi concentration camps were one of the most hideous and disturbing tragedies to arise out of the second world war, but few countries were aware of their existence before the Allied liberation in 1945. Fewer still had any idea what atrocities were taking place within their gates — which is exactly why Witold Pilecki, a Polish resistance agent, decided to see the inside for himself. How’d he do it? By getting himself arrested and sent to the worst death camp of them all: Auschwitz.

He gathered intelligence inside Auschwitz and sent it to the underground Polish army for two years, enduring brutal conditions and near-starvation to detail Nazi execution and interrogation methods. When the Allies continued to put off any aid (some even accused him of exaggerating his reports, according to NPR) he broke out of the camp and escaped. Pilecki continued to gather intelligence throughout the war, and didn’t let up afterwards either, though now it was against a different government — the Soviet regime in Poland.

Sadly, Pilecki was later captured by the communists, arrested for espionage in 1948, and issued not one, but three death sentences. The communists also wiped his name from the public record after his execution, and no accounts of Pilecki’s bravery were known until after the fall of the Berlin wall.

2. The Middle Eastern soldiers of France’s Free Army

On the whole, France gets a pretty bad rap when it comes to military valor. Some of the jokes actually ring true — when France fell to the Nazi regime during World War II, Gen. Charles De Gaulle struggled to gather soldiers who were ready and willing to drive out the Fuhrer’s army … not exactly the kind of bravery you write home about. Which is exactly why a frustrated De Gaulle set his sights outside of France to raise an army, recruiting instead from French colonies in Africa. Arabic, African and Tahitian volunteers rallied to the French cause, and the French Free Army was born.

Amazingly, this rag-tag militia, many of whom had never stepped on French soil before, kicked ass in the war against Hitler, wining several battles. So why haven’t you heard of them? Sadly, the Allies weren’t too thrilled with these guys, and when The Free French Army geared up to liberate Paris, the Allies actually refused to fight with them — unwilling to go into battle with dark-skinned foreigners.

As much as this sucks, it was typical for the time — U.S. military units were still segregated between blacks and whites in the 1940s. The Allies then essentially told De Gaulle if he wanted their help, he needed to white-wash his army, which he did — by calling a bunch of Spaniards to fight and sending the original French Free Army back to Africa. The colonists who fought for their Mother country never received any military recognition, and France would later cut off their military pensions, effectively removing them from its history.

3.  The Real-Life Rambo who beat the U.S. military at its own job

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
Richard Marcinko in uniform Photo: Wiki Commons


Sylvester Stallone graced us with one of the most iconic military characters ever when he played man-of-few-words and probable-sociopath John Rambo in  “Rambo: First Blood,” and then again in “Rambo: First Blood Part II,” “Rambo III.” Well, you get the drill. Stallone may have jumped the shark with the franchise, but the story of this real-life Rambo will never get old.

Richard Marcinko, nicknamed “Demo Dick,” was a teletype operator who dreamed of transferring to UDT, or Underwater Demolitions Team — a unit that would eventually evolve into the Navy SEALs. When he kept getting rejected, Marcinko decided he would find an alternative way into the unit — by clocking some guy in the face. Just as he’d planned, Marcinko got sent to the UDT as punishment.

During his time with the UDT and later with the SEALs in Vietnam, Marcinko became so notorious amongst the Viet Cong that there was actually a 50,000 piaster reward for whoever was brave enough to bring back his head. Yikes.

Marcinko survived Vietnam but continued his testosterone-fueled lifestyle, searching out conflict in Cambodia before being asked by the U.S. military to carry out a program called Red Cell. The mission? Infiltrating American bases all around the world to find their weak spots. Not surprisingly, Demo Dick took his job a little too seriously, and ended up mock-kidnapping a lot of officers and even their families to see if they would crack under interrogation.

Marcinko also founded SEAL Team 6 in response to the U.S. military’s failed attempt to extract Americans from the U.S. Embassy in Iran during the Iranian hostage crisis. He was the leader of the anti-terror detail, and would largely shape the elite force into what it is today.

The U.S. military still hadn’t let go of his Red Cell shenanigans, however, and later sent Marcinko to jail for conspiracy. But Demo Dick didn’t go down without a fight, and ended up writing best-selling book “Rogue Warrior” during the year he was behind bars, detailing his escapades while in uniform and humiliating the the military. What a guy.

4. The Oskar Schindler of Japan

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
Chuine Sugihara Photo: Wiki Commons


13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
A transit visa that Sugihara issued Photo: Wiki Commons


As the Nazi regime began tightening its chokehold on Europe, Japanese Consul-General Chiune Sugihara and his wife Yukiko watched with increasing concern as Lithuanian Jews were persecuted, driven out of their businesses, and forced away to “labor camps.” Finally, Sugihara decided enough was enough, and set out to bring the Jews of Europe onto Japanese soil and out of Hitler’s reach. The Japanese government, however, didn’t approve of the idea, and shut down Chiune’s request to issue visas for the fleeing Jews. In response — and in true Liam Neeson fashion — Sugihara essentially told them to shove it, and began to write the visas by hand.

He and his wife ended up writing what some estimate to be around 6,000 visas for Lithuanian Jews, an incredible feat that’s even more unbelievable when you compare it to Oskar Schindler’s record of 1,200 saved through his work program. The last foreign officials to remain in Kuanas, Lithuania, save for a Dutch consul, Sugihara and his wife worked round the clock, issuing close to 300 visas a day and distributing them to the refugees who gathered outside of the Japanese consulate gates.

When Sugihara was finally ordered to leave, he continued to write visas and throw them from the train as he departed, and left his official visa stamp with one of the refugees so they could continue his work in his absence. It is estimated that he saved nearly all of the people who received visas, and after arriving in Japan, the Jewish refugees called themselves the Sugihara Survivors in honor of his bravery.

So why hasn’t his story been broadcasted like Schindler’s? Unfortunately, Japan was still operating under the samurai code of honor during this time, and to defy a superior was considered unforgivable. So rather than award their comrade for his contributions to the war, he was removed from his government position and forced to live in dishonor until his death in 1986.

5. The British Lt. Col. who fought with a sword, longbow and bagpipes

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
Jack Churchill Photo: Wiki Commons


Lt. Col. John Malcom Thorpe Fleming Churchill, or “Mad Jack” as he would later be known, may have been the most badass person to walk the earth. He joined the British military in 1926 at age 20, only to leave shortly after to pursue professional bagpiping and compete in the World Archery Championship in 1939 — because why not. But when WWII rolled around, Churchill was more than ready to jump back into the fray, and racked up a war record so unbelievable we’re shocked the guy doesn’t have his own movie yet.

Churchill stormed the beaches of Normandy carrying a Scottish sword, wore his bagpipes in battle and made many of his kills with a longbow he wore on his back. During a night raid on the Nazi lines, Churchill led his men to capture 136 enemy soldiers — and he himself captured 40 plus Germans at sword point. During a different battle on the Nazi-controlled island of Brac, “Mad Jack” fought until he was the last of his men standing. Then, when he ran out of ammo, he stood his ground, playing his bagpipes on top of a hill until a grenade knocked him out and he was captured by the Germans.

Churchill would later escape his POW camp and meet up with American troops, only to find out — to his profound disappointment — that two atomic bombs had been dropped, and the war was essentially over. According to Vice, Churchill reportedly complained, “If it hadn’t been for those damn Yanks, we could have kept the war going for another ten years!”

7.  The Scottish soldier who went full “Braveheart” on Nazi soldiers

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
Tommy Macpherson Photo: Wiki Commons


“Mad Jack” may have donned Scottish bagpipes to fight in WWII, but Sir Tommy Macpherson had the balls to go full “Braveheart” on the battlefield, sporting a kilt while he raised hell with the Scottish commandos. Nicknamed “The Kilted Killer,” Macpherson’s flashy battle attire and relentless tenacity earned him a 30,000 Franc bounty on his head for whichever German could kill him first.

Amazingly, Macpherson made it through the entire war despite the Germans’ determination to take him out — even orchestrating the surrender of 23,000 German troops at the Das Reich Headquarters by bluffing that the Royal Air Force would unleash hell if they didn’t cooperate. In reality, Machpherson was alone and the RAF had no idea he was there, but he still managed to convince German Gen. Botho Henning Elster to give up his men and vehicles.

Macpherson walked away from World War II as the The UK’s most decorated living soldier in history, earning the Military Cross for his escape from a Nazi prison camp in Poland, a papal knighthood and two bars for his valiant — and unusual — service.

NOW: 7 crazy facts you didn’t know about the D-Day invasion

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10 things soldiers living at Fort Campbell will understand

Fort Campbell, Kentucky – home of the 101st Airborne Division and a military history so glorious that you will personally never be able live up to it, so maybe you should just stop trying. If you’ve been stationed there, you know this stuff is true. And if you are there now, you better get used to it – everyone knows that the 101st sucks you in and never lets you leave.


1. Welcome to Fort Campbell, here’s your Blue Book.

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper

When you went through replacement you were handed CamPam 600–1, the Almighty Blue Book of Fort Campbell basic standards. And while there may be an app for that, you better not lose the hard copy – it’s an inspectable item.

2. Sorry, that gate closes at 9 p.m. and it’s 9:05.

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
Photo: US Army Sgt. Leejay Lockhart

Every gate in the direction of Clarksville where you live, strategically closes for the night exactly four minutes before your CO finishes monologuing at the mandatory fun thing you had to attend. The event was 300 meters from the gate you wish you could use, but nope – you missed the window. Now you have to drive all the way across post to exit and then all the way back down Highway 41a, passing the gate you would’ve used to start with.

3. Don’t get excited about that giant new movie theater advertised on the billboard right outside Gate 7.

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper

Not coming to Fort Campbell anytime soon. Photo: Wikipedia/Хомелка

Or the one for the Pop Mart on Highway 911, for that matter. Those signs have literally been there for years, like a big fake out that someday there will be something convenient or awesome in Oak Grove, Kentucky. They’ve yet to start construction. Lies.

4. “We live in Tennessee.”

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
Photo: Wikipedia/Enoch Lai

Fort Campbell may straddle the border between Kentucky and Tennessee, but you emphatically tell (or lie to) your friends and family back home that you live in Tennessee. Because no one wants to admit to living in Kentucky.

5. Do you even CrossFit, Bro?

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
Photo: Wikipedia/Rose Physical Therapy Group from United States

 

There are no less than six CrossFit affiliates in Clarksville, the Tennessee town right outside the gate, and one on post. And yet somehow Clarksville still managed in 2014 to be the eighth most obese city in the nation. Huh?

6. “Balls.”

 

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper

When the gate guard said “Balls” as the greeting of the day he wasn’t (just) being cheeky – it was actually the name of his unit, 2–320th FAR, the Balls of the Eagle, which in 2015 reflagged as the “Proud Americans.” Yup, that means the 101st Airborne Division “Screaming Eagles” is now missing its Balls. Pause here to make all the bad jokes you like.

7. It’s not really the toughest 10 days in the Army.

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
Photo: US Army Sgt. Keith Rogers

That thing about Sabalauski Air Assault School being the toughest 10 days in the Army? Yeah, no. Name another Army school – that one’s harder.

8. 5th Group has better food.

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
Photo: US Army Maj. April Olsen

Why eat crappy breakfast at your own brigade’s DFAC when you can hit 5th Group’s? It’s not enough that they already know they’re Special, but they get the fancy grub, too, and call their DFAC the “Oasis.” You can’t make this stuff up.

9. You’re visiting five German POWs.

Looking for something Halloween worthy? You know to head out to a cemetery where five German prisoners of war are buried on Fort Campbell, including one who was shot and killed while trying to escape.

10. You’re just channeling Jimi Hendrix.

13 Tell-Tale Signs You’re A Paratrooper
Photo: Youtube

Can’t resist a little air guitar while on Campbell, can you? Maybe that’s because you know that guitar legend Pvt. James Marshall Hendrix was stationed at Campbell. … that is, until he got tossed just one year into his contract. Enjoy that pseudo-spiritual Hendrix feeling as much as you want. Just maybe don’t get discharged for the same reasons he did, because that’s just embarrassing.

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This article originally appeared at Military.com Copyright 2015. Follow Military.com on Twitter.

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