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Regarding Military service, a story.

3 replies [Last post]
By OriJuice on Tue, 03-04-08, 19:05

Hello everyone, this is my first post on the forum.

My name is Kyle, I am an 18 year old teenage boy who has a severe peanut allergy, I am aware many of you have sons and daughters with peanut allergies, and many of them will be looking at Military Service for a career when they are older perhaps. My story will detail and outline the issues you may and probably will run into if your son/daughter or you decide to try for the Service.

Lo and behold a 17 year old teenager going into his 12th year of High School (Hey it's me lol). I had a half semester co op set up for the Armed Forces and was looking forward to it, I had spent six months pursuing and filling out paperwork. I had also been to the recruitment center on several occasions and explained my peanut allergy, the severity of it and no one there saw this as an issue. So comes October 2007 and I have an aptitude and medical test set up for the Armed Forces, I arrive thirty minutes early, fill out the nesc paperwork and then go to see the Medic who's office is within the back. He read through my file (Transcripts from school, what I filled out etc) and noticed I had a peanut allergy. I casually explained to him that it was life threatening and I did carry an epipen around. It was at that moment he told me I was "Unfit for duty".

This was especially hard for me to swallow, just those three words as it had been a dream of mine to serve in the armed forces since I was in grade 4. I knew I could get in, and pass everything. I thought after six months of prep to get in that I could take any additional last minute paperwork they threw at me. But I couldn't take that. So I gathered my things, signed out of the co op and off their information sheets and left; I don't think I ever had such a long walk home. Apparently the reason I was unfit is because I carried an epipen, it wasn't just the peanut allergy alone. As all their Improvised Rations are individually sealed, but it was the epipen. They don't want soldiers that are a liability without getting shot at as is I guess.

So, to you parents and people with peanut allergies out there. If your son or daughter or even you are looking for a career in the Armed Forces then I seriously urge them/you to ask the medic at the recruiting center first. Don't make the same mistake I did and just ask the first person you see. I think personally they should change their policy regarding epipens; as we know in the near future there will be a lot more people needing them, for asthma, for allergies or what not.

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By MommyOfTwo on Tue, 03-04-08, 20:35

I'm so sorry Kyle! As a wife of an active dute Army soldier I salute you in your commitment to wanting to join the military. I can only imagine how heartbreaking it would be to hear those words. My husband has been a soldier for almost 15 years and about 6 years ago he started having a skin issue. He deployed to Korea for a year and he deployed to Iraq with it and he didn't have any issues. But once back stateside he began to seek more treatment. Through this he was forced into a medical board. Thankfully he was able to reclassify into another MOS but it is hard for him nonetheless to leave his job in the infantry that he has loved so much for the last 14+ years.

Sometimes the military just doesn't make much sense!

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By OriJuice on Wed, 03-05-08, 01:52

I am Canadian, so my primary duty would have been more or less on base at home; so I can't completely understand them. I will probably appeal in a few more years to see if anything has changed; and if not I will press to make changes (One thing our Military hates is people breathing down their backs and snooping around, especially civies) but at the moment I can't do anything about it because I am so young and hold no momentum against them.

Thank you for the regards, tell your husband he is doing a wonderful job and that I as a supporter of the Armed Forces would like to thank him for doing a great job protecting America and us as neighbors.

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By gatorfantm on Wed, 10-02-13, 02:01

I was also in the same boat. I had applied for and was highly competitive for an Army ROTC scholarship and lost it due to my allergy. I was then told by an Army recruiter to try the Navy. I began the enlistment process, scored a 95 on the ASVAB, was offered Nuke program, and passed the try-out physical for the BUDS enlistment program to try and be a SEAL, only to be turned down at MEPS by the physician who recommended the waiver be approved and told me the Navy would be stupid not to approve it. I received the call from the recruiter on my 18th birthday stating my waiver had been rejected. I am now in the process of writing my congressmen, the Vice President, and even the White House to see about having this overturned. If they can make accommodations for all the minorities and optional special diets that they do, then they could make MRE's out of almond butter and cook with canola or soybean oil. I ask that each and every would-be servicemen and all their family members do the same and write your representatives, the Vice President, and the President. Let our politicians know that they need to look into this matter for us.

Timothy Moore

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