After graduating from Delano High School in 1964, he voluntarily enlisted in the military. Always looking for a challenge and driven to push the limits of his abilities, he applied for and was accepted into the US Air Force Pararescue school during the Vietnam War. It was a defining moment in his life and thus began his extraordinary experience as a trainee and ultimatly a full fledged Pararesueman (a PJ) for the most elite branch of the military. The process of becoming a PJ is so difficult it is informally referred to as "Superman School". As a PJ, his mission was to search, rescue, medically treat and recover downed pilots in both humanitarian and hostile enviroments. He and his classmates were also a part of the special operations unit used to support NASA in the recovery of astronauts and equipment after water landings. He did two tours in Vietnam and returned to the Fresno area in 1968.
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