During the month of May, we are celebrating Military Appreciation Month by highlighting the important role the U.S. Armed Forces have played in our country. This week we hear from former Marine Kerry Battle, Nuclear Security Captain at Plant Vogtle.
When and why did you join the military?
I joined the Marine Corps in 1996. My main reason for joining at the time was to get funds for college, but I chose the Marines specifically for the challenge.
What is your role in the military?
I served as an Intelligence Analyst for 2nd Reconnaissance Battalion (Camp Lejeune, North Carolina) and 3rd Marine Division G2 (Okinawa, Japan). Providing Marines with the most accurate intel was essential and nothing to be taken lightly.
Have you been deployed recently? What did your deployment involve?
I did not deploy as a Marine. However, I supported Operation Enduring Freedom as a Cyber Surety Apprentice with the 283 Combat Communication Squadron. I supported JSTARS (Joint Surveillance and Target Attack Radar System) reconnaissance flights in the Middle East.
Is there anything you wish others knew about serving in the military?
Everyone who has served has done so for their own reasons. It shouldn’t be a decision that is taken lightly if someone is considering joining. That lifestyle is not for everyone. However, everyone can contribute in some way. I wish others knew how much it means to a service member when they have a good support system back home. The kindness and thoughtfulness of people help to keep all our service members encouraged and motivated to push through. Please do not underestimate the power of a simple “thank you.”
How has your military service influenced your work at Southern Nuclear?
The life experiences that I have from the military are invaluable. The opportunity to travel the world and experience different cultures opened my eyes to all sorts of things that happen around the world that we Americans are not aware of. The history, comradery and traditions of the Marine Corps helped shape me into the person I am now. That experience plays a major role in how I interpret effective leadership, how I respond to high pressure situations and how I view and embrace diversity, equity and inclusion.
What does Military Appreciation Month mean to you?
One of the best feelings I’ve felt as a military service member was when a stranger would say to me, “Thank you for your service.” It was usually accompanied with a handshake. It’s amazing what a simple, yet sincere, gesture of thankfulness does for a person. So, having an entire month of recognition and appreciation speaks volumes about how others view their commitment and the sacrifices made by our service members and their families. I would like to express my appreciation for the service members who are currently serving and have served. Thank you!