Sons Follow In Father's Footsteps
(January 11, 2010)
Army Sgt. 1st Class Gary Williard, left, and his son, Army Sgt. Joshua Williard,
pose with a UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter at Contingency Operating Base Adder,
Iraq on January 7, 2010.
||CONTINGENCY OPERATING BASE ADDER, Iraq, Jan.
7, 2010 – Any parent whose child follows him
into his profession will feel pride.
A Pennsylvania National Guard soldier here can
be doubly proud, then, as one son has followed
in his military footsteps while another is
pursuing his civilian career.
Army Sgt. 1st Class Gary Williard of Company D,
Task Force Diablo, is a retired police officer
and an Army National Guard aircraft maintenance
His older son, Gary Jr., joined the Tower City
Police Force in Pennsylvania, where his father
retired in 2006 as chief of police. Williard's
younger son, Army Sgt. Joshua Williard of 628th
Aviation Support Battalion's Company B, worked
in the next hangar over from his dad during much
of their recent deployment here and is now
completing his deployment with
final processing in the United States.
“I pinned on Joshua's sergeant stripes when he got promoted here on Aug. 27,”
Williad said. “That was quite a moment for me.” |
Williard began his military career in 1976 as a propeller and rotor mechanic for
the Pennsylvania Army National Guard. After a break in service from 1982 to
1990, he returned to the Guard and has worked in maintenance on many aircraft.
His younger son said he plans on a career in aviation maintenance with the Army
Gary Jr. worked for his father for five years in the Tower City Police
Department before moving to the Pennsylvania State Police, where he has worked
for seven years.
Williard and his wife, Dina, ran an automotive repair business together. Now
they own rental apartments.
“Dina runs the apartments while I am away,” Williard said. “With Joshua and I
deployed and Gary Jr. busy with work, she'll be very happy for us to come home.”
Williard deployed from 2003 to 2004 to Kuwait in both aviation maintenance and
“Even on deployment, I was still a cop,” he said.
Article and photo By Army Sgt. Neil Gussman
Task Force Diablo
American Forces Press Service
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