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Posted: 7/19/2005 2:53:47 PM EDT
July 19, 2005

Uncle Sam wants you – even if you’re 42 years old

By Rick Maze
Times staff writer

The Defense Department quietly asked Congress on Monday to raise the maximum age for military recruits to 42 for all branches of the service.

Under current law, the maximum age to enlist in the active components is 35, while people up to age 39 may enlist in the reserves. By practice, the accepted age for recruits is 27 for the Air Force, 28 for the Marine Corps and 34 for the Navy and Army, although the Army Reserve and Navy Reserve sometimes take people up to age 39 in some specialties.

The Pentagon’s request to raise the maximum recruit age to 42 is part of what defense officials are calling a package of “urgent wartime support initiatives” sent to Congress Monday night prior to a Tuesday hearing of the House Armed Services military personnel subcommittee.

At that hearing, David S.C. Chu, under secretary of defense for personnel and readiness, said he felt the military’s recent problems with recruiting were improving, but that additional incentives would help.

Chu mentioned the age change in passing during the hearing but gave no other details, such as whether any of the services were seriously considering recruiting 42-year-olds.

Most of the initiatives in the package were previously requested by the Bush administration as part of the 2006 defense budget, which is pending before Congress. They include raising the maximum re-enlistment bonus to $90,000; maximum hardship duty pay to $750 a month; special pay and incentive bonuses for nuclear qualified officers to $30,000; assignment incentive pay to $3,000; and increasing accession and affiliation bonuses for reservists.

The request, not yet approved by the White House, also asks lawmakers to revise some benefits proposals already before Congress.

For example, the Bush administration originally asked Congress to increase enlistment bonuses to $30,000, but the Pentagon now wants bonuses of up to $40,000.

The administration also asked for an Army-only test of a $1,000 referral bonus that would be paid to current soldiers if they get someone to enter the Army and make it through basic and advanced training. Now, the Pentagon wants that payment to be $2,500.

The request also includes a new Army initiative that officials are calling the Army Home Ownership program. It would set aside money for new recruits that could be used to buy a home at the end of an enlistment, an idea that Army officials believe will help convince parents and other “adult influencers” of service-age youths about the benefits of joining the military.

Lawmakers are sympathetic to the need to do more. Rep. John McHugh, R-N.Y., said he is willing to look at new pay-and-benefits initiatives, although he personally believes that what the Pentagon needs is an increase in personnel to cut the workload on active and reserve service member.

Rep. Vic Snyder of Arkansas, the subcommittee’s ranking Democrat, also vowed to help.

“Recruitment is a challenge right now,” Snyder said. “Both the military and Congress are working on solutions, but I expect these challenges will be with us for some time. Military service is honorable and can be a real growing opportunity for a young man or woman.”
Link Posted: 7/19/2005 2:56:10 PM EDT
Push the slow meat to the front of the grinder. No thanks, I'll be 43 next month and I've already
done my tour.
Link Posted: 7/19/2005 2:57:48 PM EDT
Sounds like a plan to me.
Link Posted: 7/19/2005 2:59:56 PM EDT
Allow more eye waivers damnit.

I'm 23, can shoot just fine with my glasses (and would happily take eye surgery) and would happily bail on grad school to go into the Corps or Army.
Link Posted: 7/19/2005 3:01:58 PM EDT
Link Posted: 7/19/2005 3:10:42 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Aimless:
I think once you start having trouble staying awake after 9:30pm the military isn't for you. I suppose I could free up some younger guy to lug a rifle by doing paperwork or something.



You stay up till 9:30????

Why???


Link Posted: 7/19/2005 3:10:48 PM EDT
Hey I turned 42 two days ago.
Link Posted: 7/19/2005 3:12:48 PM EDT
Just so these people are physically in good enough health not to drop dead in basic training, they can probably be used. Most of these older people will likely be rear echlon folks anyway. So it's not like they need to be as young and fit as troops in the combat arms.

Link Posted: 7/19/2005 3:15:56 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Charging_Handle:
Just so these people are physically in good enough health not to drop dead in basic training, they can probably be used. Most of these older people will likely be rear echlon folks anyway. So it's not like they need to be as young and fit as troops in the combat arms.




Oh yeah. Why have some 23 year old doing some admin job, get older folks that are looking for work.

I think it's a great idea.....
Link Posted: 7/19/2005 3:16:17 PM EDT
Link Posted: 7/19/2005 3:22:03 PM EDT
Hey ! I'm 43, 17 years service (broken by 9 years) and looking forward toanother deployment to the sandbox. My boat crew on my last deployment was know as the Geritol Crew because we were all over 40 LOL!!! We were also the only crew to not miss a mission, not destroy our boat and none of us were seriously injured. Us old guys did just fine on the front line, not some REMF desk job, thank you.
Link Posted: 7/19/2005 3:27:16 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 7/19/2005 3:30:46 PM EDT by AR15fan]
Damn! Even at 34 I dont think my back could handle those 26 mile predeployment MCRESS humps anymore. I'm sure I could past the PFT test, and still max the run. But no way I would max the pull up and the situps would wreck by back for a week.

Maybe a reserve MP unit though.
Link Posted: 7/19/2005 3:30:15 PM EDT
Link Posted: 7/19/2005 3:31:53 PM EDT

Originally Posted By cmjohnson:
If they'd take me back, I'd enlist in the AF TODAY.




I suspect the Airforce reserve or Air national guard might take you?
Link Posted: 7/19/2005 3:37:30 PM EDT
Link Posted: 7/19/2005 3:39:09 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Charging_Handle:
Just so these people are physically in good enough health not to drop dead in basic training, they can probably be used. Most of these older people will likely be rear echlon folks anyway. So it's not like they need to be as young and fit as troops in the combat arms.




Older people? Damn that hurts. At 42 I kick the crap out of most of the 25+ year olds when I'm mountain biking. Older people are in their 70's
Link Posted: 7/19/2005 3:47:27 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 7/19/2005 3:47:54 PM EDT by jrzy]

Originally Posted By Gunner1X:
Push the slow meat to the front of the grinder. No thanks, I'll be 43 next month and I've already
done my tour.



After 9/11 I was thinking about going back in for some "payback?
My wife (bless her soul) reminded me how much I hate getting shot at.
Link Posted: 7/19/2005 5:00:01 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 7/19/2005 5:01:30 PM EDT by DienBienPhu54]

Originally Posted By cmjohnson:
When I left the service, a clerical error assigned me the wrong reenlistment code. I have to appeal to a special board to get it changed, and I only recently found out the relevant details. Talking to several
different recruiters over the years NEVER got me that information. It has not helped my dim view
of most recruiters, as you might imagine.

CJ



you need to contact the Air Force review board at the Pentagon , the whole process to have a hearing and get your RE code changed will take about 1 year, you will need to contact a veterans organization to represent you in your case. They have traveling review board that travels to your state, usually in a major city.

Military recruiters wont help you , you need to contact a veterans organization or the red cross for more info.
Link Posted: 7/19/2005 5:04:21 PM EDT
Lemme know when they start taking people that have had asthma after age 12.

I'll fly a desk somewhere -- its still serving (as much as the gung-ho crowd here would say it isn't)
Link Posted: 7/19/2005 5:24:30 PM EDT
Originally Posted By Aimless:


"Hey you stayed awake through the whole thing!" in a "Good boy!" voice.
Yeah,I've heard that before and I wasn't in a car.
Link Posted: 7/19/2005 5:27:43 PM EDT
I'm ready!


Link Posted: 7/19/2005 5:28:58 PM EDT
On another note. Ever take notice to all the fast food joints. Look around town, hanging out on the streets ..pool halls etc.... There are many multitudes of 18-25 year olds just hanging out and working piss pay jobs and living at home with mom. These people should be first or forced to join. It's their duty as Americans. They shouldn't even have to ask.
Link Posted: 7/19/2005 5:31:32 PM EDT
Damn it...44

Link Posted: 7/19/2005 5:34:33 PM EDT
Just make us old farts snipers, as long as we don't have to walk and recover the bodies.
Link Posted: 7/19/2005 5:34:54 PM EDT
There should NOT be an age limit, if one is physically capable let them serve.
Link Posted: 7/19/2005 5:39:36 PM EDT
I expect that this will free up a lot of choices for the "kill all Muslims" crowd here.

Now their walk can match their talk.
Link Posted: 7/19/2005 5:40:55 PM EDT
Call me paranoid but, this may be part of a scheme to get us old guys thinned out. You know, the people who are old enough to still remember the freedoms we have lost and the willingness to fight to keep our country free from being turned into a socialist nation. Yet, young enough to be able to speak out to the youth and educate them on what America was, is, and could be.
Link Posted: 7/19/2005 5:41:45 PM EDT
Yeah, and they might not take me because I am 10 lbs over ship weight. 21 yrs old, pretty damn good shot, able to pass IST and college degree, but no waiver for 10lbs? I hate my recruiter.

Pat
Link Posted: 7/19/2005 5:47:26 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Johnny_Reno:
I expect that this will free up a lot of choices for the "kill all Muslims" crowd here.

Now their walk can match their talk.



LOL..All the arfcom wannabe operators step up! Pull out all the tactical gear you spend thousands on to look cool at the range,dust of the 13 variations of the AR you have sitting in the safe and step the fuck up!!!
Link Posted: 7/19/2005 5:49:26 PM EDT

Originally Posted By TrashHeap:
On another note. Ever take notice to all the fast food joints. Look around town, hanging out on the streets ..pool halls etc.... There are many multitudes of 18-25 year olds just hanging out and working piss pay jobs and living at home with mom. These people should be first or forced to join. It's their duty as Americans. They shouldn't even have to ask.



I'm sure they'll love fighting for Hitlery when she is Klinton44...
Link Posted: 7/19/2005 5:49:47 PM EDT
well i just turned 41 and a practical nurse i think about it if the wife would not kill me. but i would need to get in shape first
Link Posted: 8/6/2005 11:10:24 PM EDT
Well after a few years of being out of the Army and just turning 38 years old I want back in.
So I took my wife out on a date last night and told her that I wanted to reenlist.
She told me that if that was what I wanted to do then do it. I love my wife.
I contacted an AZNG recruiter tonight and he is going to get me in touch with the local recruiter. Now if they will just pass the age limit I will try and go RA.
Phessor
Link Posted: 8/7/2005 7:39:59 AM EDT
If they just raise the limit a little higher, I will join up. Or just pass a law allowing for men who do not want to serve to find a replacement willing to take their place.

My wife will probably divorce me, but I am willing to do it.

I am a hell of a lot more versatile (useful) than some 20 year old. And there a an awful lot of things I am qualified to do.

Link Posted: 8/7/2005 9:34:38 AM EDT
I'm 40. If I can back into shape before the limit, I'm gonna do it.

Hot damn.
Link Posted: 8/7/2005 9:46:19 AM EDT
My brother is that old and deploying as we speak.
Link Posted: 8/7/2005 10:10:20 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Johnny_Reno:
I expect that this will free up a lot of choices for the "kill all Muslims" crowd here.

Now their walk can match their talk.


Nope. Turning 49 next month. Kill All Muslims!!!

CW
Link Posted: 8/7/2005 10:13:07 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Cold_Warrior:

Originally Posted By Johnny_Reno:
I expect that this will free up a lot of choices for the "kill all Muslims" crowd here.

Now their walk can match their talk.


Nope. Turning 49 next month. Kill All Muslims!!!

CW


I'm 49, and have prior service. Can I join? CanIcanIcanIcanIcanIcanIcanI?

Bilster
Link Posted: 8/7/2005 10:27:00 AM EDT
The usual cut off for enisted service is 60. This usually only applies in the Reserve/Guard side, because Active guys reach high year tenure way before that, but....

If a guy enlists at 42, they would have to move the high limit to 62 to accomodate hime having a chance to do 20 years. Just what we need, 62 year old SFCs walking around.

On a positive note, in many of the units I've served in, 40 something PSGs, 1SGs and MAJ/LCOLs are usually the biggest physical fitness studs around. (OF course, they try harder to achieve it).
Link Posted: 8/7/2005 10:29:13 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Lonewalker:
well i just turned 41 and a practical nurse i think about it if the wife would not kill me. but i would need to get in shape first



There is a whole seperate recruiting system for medical folks.

In fact, for anyone with ANY kind of 4 year degree they will Commission you as a 2LT in medical Admin. no OCS, just straight to OBC. Its not high-speed stuff, but it is needed and makes a definate impact.
Link Posted: 8/7/2005 10:31:04 AM EDT

Originally Posted By bilster:

Originally Posted By Cold_Warrior:

Originally Posted By Johnny_Reno:
I expect that this will free up a lot of choices for the "kill all Muslims" crowd here.

Now their walk can match their talk.


Nope. Turning 49 next month. Kill All Muslims!!!

CW


I'm 49, and have prior service. Can I join? CanIcanIcanIcanIcanIcanIcanI?

Bilster



If you have more than 7 years service I think so.
Link Posted: 8/7/2005 10:32:07 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Garand_Shooter:

Originally Posted By bilster:

Originally Posted By Cold_Warrior:

Originally Posted By Johnny_Reno:
I expect that this will free up a lot of choices for the "kill all Muslims" crowd here.

Now their walk can match their talk.


Nope. Turning 49 next month. Kill All Muslims!!!

CW


I'm 49, and have prior service. Can I join? CanIcanIcanIcanIcanIcanIcanI?

Bilster



If you have more than 7 years service I think so.



YESSSSS!

Bilster
Link Posted: 8/7/2005 10:32:52 AM EDT

Originally Posted By SoCalJBT:
Damn it...44




+1

If the would have done this on 9/12/01 I would have been there in a heart beat.

Link Posted: 8/8/2005 3:33:19 PM EDT
All of you guys saying you want to go back in really only what the liberty in Thailand, Korea, Germany or England!
Link Posted: 8/8/2005 3:48:24 PM EDT
screw the bonuses and all of that stuff. they need to pay a fair wage if they want people to join and stay in.
Link Posted: 8/8/2005 4:23:51 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 8/8/2005 4:24:29 PM EDT by p331083]
When I was at MEPS there was a 42 year old guy trying to reinlist. He was a medic in his previous stint and says he wants to go to Iraq as a medic.

No idea if they accepted him. There was also two other guys that appeared in their 40s. One was DQed because of hearing, not sure on the other.
Link Posted: 8/8/2005 4:35:40 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Johnny_Reno:
I expect that this will free up a lot of choices for the "kill all Muslims" crowd here.

Now their walk can match their talk.



naw that won't work........the standard answers from these wannabes will be, my wife won't let me go, I would if I didn't have a family, if I was in better shape, they don't pay enough, etc... it's easier for them to live in their walter mitty fantasy world, and buying "mil-surplus" gear and talk big shit.
Link Posted: 8/8/2005 4:37:25 PM EDT

Originally Posted By mobius:

Originally Posted By Johnny_Reno:
I expect that this will free up a lot of choices for the "kill all Muslims" crowd here.

Now their walk can match their talk.



naw that won't work........the standard answers from these wannabes will be, my wife won't let me go, I would if I didn't have a family, if I was in better shape, they don't pay enough, etc... it's easier for them to live in their walter mitty fantasy world, and buying "mil-surplus" gear and talk big shit.



Aren't we a tough guy.

I am 57, served 4 years from 1969 to 1973. I am too old and out of shape, but I served my country. Have you?
Link Posted: 8/8/2005 4:40:02 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Johnny_Reno:
I expect that this will free up a lot of choices for the "kill all Muslims" crowd here.

Now their walk can match their talk.



Been there, done that.......1969 to 1973, so you can stuff your condescending bullshit.
Link Posted: 8/8/2005 4:45:32 PM EDT

Originally Posted By LARRYG:

Originally Posted By mobius:

Originally Posted By Johnny_Reno:
I expect that this will free up a lot of choices for the "kill all Muslims" crowd here.

Now their walk can match their talk.



naw that won't work........the standard answers from these wannabes will be, my wife won't let me go, I would if I didn't have a family, if I was in better shape, they don't pay enough, etc... it's easier for them to live in their walter mitty fantasy world, and buying "mil-surplus" gear and talk big shit.



Aren't we a tough guy.

I am 57, served 4 years from 1969 to 1973. I am too old and out of shape, but I served my country. Have you?



4 times longer then you, 1975-1995 US Army
Link Posted: 8/8/2005 4:47:37 PM EDT

Originally Posted By LARRYG:

Originally Posted By mobius:

Originally Posted By Johnny_Reno:
I expect that this will free up a lot of choices for the "kill all Muslims" crowd here.

Now their walk can match their talk.



naw that won't work........the standard answers from these wannabes will be, my wife won't let me go, I would if I didn't have a family, if I was in better shape, they don't pay enough, etc... it's easier for them to live in their walter mitty fantasy world, and buying "mil-surplus" gear and talk big shit.



Aren't we a tough guy.

I am 57, served 4 years from 1969 to 1973. I am too old and out of shape, but I served my country. Have you?



I really dont think he was talking about folks like you, Larry.
Link Posted: 8/8/2005 4:48:08 PM EDT

Originally Posted By mobius:

Originally Posted By LARRYG:

Originally Posted By mobius:

Originally Posted By Johnny_Reno:
I expect that this will free up a lot of choices for the "kill all Muslims" crowd here.

Now their walk can match their talk.



naw that won't work........the standard answers from these wannabes will be, my wife won't let me go, I would if I didn't have a family, if I was in better shape, they don't pay enough, etc... it's easier for them to live in their walter mitty fantasy world, and buying "mil-surplus" gear and talk big shit.



Aren't we a tough guy.

I am 57, served 4 years from 1969 to 1973. I am too old and out of shape, but I served my country. Have you?



4 times longer then you, 1975-1995 US Army



I guess I should be impressed, but I am not. You talk all that bullshit, but there ARE a lot vets on this board have "walked the walk" a long time ago, but you don't seem to respect that.
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