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Army Boot Camp: Fort Sill, Oklahoma Part 1- Reception

This is a first person account of everything, legitimate and illegitimate (contraband, fighting, etc), about spending 10 weeks at United States Army Boot Camp at Fort Sill, Oklahoma.

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Night 1

The time is 11:34 pm, November 19, 2008. I slowly awaken from my semi-slumber on the bus from Oklahoma City International Airport to Fort Sill. I have just signed a 6 year contract with the United States Army and will begin my training here at Fort Sill. I see the bus driver talking to the guard at the gate. We slowly drive through the night until we arrive at a series of monotone buildings in a row. “Welcome to Fort Sill.” the bus driver says to all of us on the bus. New recruits. Fresh meat. We stand up and start filing off the bus, unsure of what is to happen to us next. I reach the steps of the bus, there’s no turning back. I step down the stairs, nervous as to what may be ahead of me. Should I really have done this? Was this what I really wanted? I step off the bus and a Drill Sergeant is yelling at me to move quicker. I quicken my pace. The Drill Sergeant continues yelling, I am not moving quick enough. I hate the Drill Sergeant. I feel as if the hatred is mutual. This is going to be a long ten weeks. We move in a speedy yet orderly fashion into a classroom of sorts. They give each of us paperwork to fill out and we all complete it. The Drill Sergeant explains the rules and what will not be accepted. No nicotine. I don’t think I can do this. No caffeine. I don’t think I can do this. I picture all the reasons I am doing this. My pregnant girlfriend, my need to be more than just another person on the street, money. Money. Money. I need the money. I decide to deal with it for now. They make us move down the stairs and down the row of buildings. It’s freezing cold out. I don’t think I can do this. The Drill Sergeant leads us to a building in the far back. He tells us new recruits to go into bottom north and find a bed. We happily oblige. I’m happy to be going to sleep, but unaware that it is not for long. Might as well rest while I can. Tomorrow starts my whole new life. 

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  1. mari

    On February 18, 2010 at 11:58 pm


    hey nice stuff im actually going to bootcamp in june, what happens next hehe i want honest answers

  2. James pettigrove

    On March 23, 2010 at 1:39 am


    I went through at age 38 for basic. I made it through by doing what I was told when I was told to do it. Don\’t whine, piss or moan about the situation because everyone is thinking the same thing. Be internaly positive ALWAYS. When your in pain from exercise be positive. When your lungs are screaming from running long distances be positive. Most of all realize that MILLIONS of kids do this every month and they have already done this. That you can do it to. The hardest thing to deal with is the mouth breathin, knuckle draggin window lickers that you end up rooming with in a 40 – 60 man Bay. Just keep your mouth shut and eyes and ears open and the whole time will fly by. -
    Good Luck, 68W PFC Pettigrove 2-218FA HHB OANG

  3. John McLeod

    On April 21, 2010 at 10:43 pm


    I’m trying to get an idea my son just arrived at Fort Sill . Probably is going through this as i type . Just know this I am very proud and respect all who serve and those who have served . Thanks from another very proud dad .

  4. Daniel Sanders

    On April 22, 2010 at 9:18 pm


    Wow this is going to be rough but I know its going to be worth it I’m 27 and I know I need this to start my new life with my new family I will see you soon Fort Sill so be ready because I will be

  5. 92A PV2 Marrero

    On April 27, 2010 at 12:05 pm


    im going to basic in frt sill on june 15 th. Shold i be scared someone plz answer me. Im 17 and very excited ye anxious aboutthis experience that is ahead of me.

  6. Stevens

    On May 25, 2010 at 2:09 am


    any hints on what it’s like at sill?
    i’m a 17 year old female and i arrive at fort sill on june 16..
    i am terrified completely of not knowing, but so excited to be there.

  7. Stevens

    On May 25, 2010 at 2:10 am


    any hints on what it\’s like at sill?
    i\’m a 17 year old female and i arrive at fort sill on june 16..
    i am terrified completely of not knowing, but so excited to be there.

  8. Pam

    On May 29, 2010 at 11:12 am


    My daughter is there in her 5th week now! I couldn’t be more proud!

  9. Loretta Cerretti

    On June 17, 2010 at 12:55 am


    My 18 year old son left one week after his HS grad.from a small town in Iowa. He arrived just last week on like the 8th or so. He was originally going to Ft.Lenordwood , but something got changed. His name is Shane Spencer and he is just the greatest kid in the world and would help anyone out in anyway he can. Hopefully some of ya all will run into each other while you are there. I still am waiting for an address for my son so I can start burn up the snail mail down there. Good Luck
    Loretta

  10. Don Garrison

    On June 23, 2010 at 3:11 am


    I feel you all,was there 30 years ago myself @ 20 years Old, Pregnant Girl friend no Hospitalization “lost Job”. Uncle Sam said he would settle all my problems, “just Sign Here” and I was off. Same airport same bus ride same orientation room upon arrival snow was falling “Oklahoma” They told me I was leaving a Blizzard Jan 24 1973 from Cleve, Oh to go to a warm paradise. Lol..arrival Jan 24, 1:am . Cold chills ran all over me, I felt feveressly sick, I hated everybody there ,we got our bunk stuff and made up temporary bunks that a quarter had to bounce off of. Notice: Temporary Bunk’ we did not have time to sleep the 1st Night, we doubled time everywhere we went got our hair cut at 5:am ran to Chow hall, did not finish my eggs and we were xx timing to PT and then to Get Shots, many many shots, and our Clothing GI issues. To make a long story short the 1st week was Hell after that things didn’t seem so bad you got use to not sleeping and eat your meals on the run. This was during The Viet Nam war end times, we all thought we were headed over there. Looking back I would do it again but with a different attitude. Good luck everyone and may God bless all our young man and women who are taking paths that are well worn, have faith and Know ” YOU CAN DO”

  11. Don Garrison

    On June 23, 2010 at 3:26 am


    By the way Misses Cerritti, The Army as a \”thingy\” about changing GI orders and destinations. This is part of Army Life.
    I had 3 MOS\’s before I was discharged They seem to had a lot of Problems back then , we did not have Computers just microfitch, and paper trails from one Job to the next, I arrived in Virginia they didn\’t even know I existed, went through crap for about 6 months until some one at HQ decided to get off thier rump.
    But that was back Then. America was not proud of us the way they are about our GI\’s today, they are fortunate for that.

  12. TY

    On October 7, 2010 at 1:28 am


    God bless our men and women who are experiencing Boot Camp. My BF is there now. At 40 he decided this is something he wanted to do. He should be at reception now and I can\’t wait to start sending him the letters I have already written. I pray you can all be positive and keep your future soldiers spirits up. My father was in the the Army and gave me and my brother the best life anyone could ever ask for. It was his sacrifice that allows me to have the freedoms I have today and I proudly work very closely with the military for that reason and a DOD civilian. I will keep every one of you and your family members and friends in my prayers. Today and until we forever. Thanks to all for being Army Strong.

  13. Kimmy

    On October 8, 2010 at 6:49 pm


    I have a nephew from FL that left for Ft. Sill on Friday Oct. 1st to 95th Battalion for reception and then headed out for basic training (still) at Ft. Sill. We miss him very much and are very proud of him but scared at the same time. I pray that the Lord will protect him and every other parents boy/girl that starts their new journey. Thank you to all the soilder that are serving our country.

  14. Josa

    On January 5, 2011 at 7:10 pm


    I pray, admire and bless all our brave men and women who place themselves on the line for our yesterday, today and tomorrow… god is always with them.

  15. Marcy

    On January 11, 2011 at 2:54 am


    I’m so proud to know a young woman (the daughter of a good friend) currently going through boot camp at Fort Sill. She has such a fantastic, positive attitude. Not will they pass with flying colors, they’ll have good stories to tell about spending winter in Oklahoma :) (Note to anyone headed there: her advice is to be in good shape, do your best and you’ll do just fine.) Here’s hoping for decent weather the next few months!
    My deepest gratitude to each and every recruit and their families, bless you one and all!
    Marcy in AZ

  16. Marcy

    On January 11, 2011 at 2:54 am


    I\’m so proud to know a young woman (the daughter of a good friend) currently going through boot camp at Fort Sill. She has such a fantastic, positive attitude. Not will they pass with flying colors, they\’ll have good stories to tell about spending winter in Oklahoma :) (Note to anyone headed there: her advice is to be in good shape, do your best and you\’ll do just fine.) Here\’s hoping for decent weather the next few months!
    My deepest gratitude to each and every recruit and their families, bless you one and all!
    Marcy in AZ

  17. Marcy S

    On January 11, 2011 at 2:55 am


    I\\\’m so proud to know a young woman (the daughter of a good friend) currently going through boot camp at Fort Sill. She has such a fantastic, positive attitude. Not will they pass with flying colors, they\\\’ll have good stories to tell about spending winter in Oklahoma :) (Note to anyone headed there: her advice is to be in good shape, do your best and you\\\’ll do just fine.) Here\\\’s hoping for decent weather the next few months!
    My deepest gratitude to each and every recruit and their families, bless you one and all!
    Marcy in AZ

  18. Katie

    On February 3, 2011 at 10:58 pm


    My boyfriend just arrived at Fort Sill as I’m typing this. Its already been so hard for me, because we have a 16 month old daughter. :( She already asks about him. I am so nervous for him…probably more nervous than he is! What can I expect for phone calls and such??

  19. Travis Shafer

    On February 4, 2011 at 5:40 pm


    i will be heading to frt Sill july 18th 2011 is there anything i should to do to prepare myself thanks, travis

  20. Lauren

    On February 10, 2011 at 11:05 am


    My husband just arrived at ft. sill yesterday. He’s pumped and excited to be there. How long do I have to wait before writing? Does anyone have the assess there?

  21. Lauren

    On February 10, 2011 at 11:19 am


    Address sry typing this on my Phone

  22. David Emme

    On July 11, 2011 at 1:59 pm


    Just like any army school the hardest thing is the people you work with that are going throiugh the same training you are.(and yes-you might not understand this yet but those ofus who already went through this havinggone through quite a few schools before typing this.)

    Everyone thinks they are the boss of everyone-well hopefully you can see why this would be a fouled up mess.

  23. sonia

    On July 28, 2011 at 12:58 pm


    my daughter just got there yesterday she was really scare and nervous. and that\’s normal i will be to, i love her very much god bless I\’m very proud of her

  24. Naomi S, Lopez

    On August 28, 2011 at 9:30 am


    My son Gilbert has been there for 6 weeks… Although his letters tell me he enjoys it there… I know he is lonely. I know this because he hasn’t received any of the 11 letters that I sent to him. Nor has he recieved any from his cousins and/or brothers. He has recieved some letters from various friends and family… This is so frustrating… I love my son so very mych! He has made me very proud!! Hope your loved one is having better luck! God Bless Us and our children

  25. Greg

    On January 9, 2012 at 9:58 pm


    I was at Ft. Sill a little over 30 years ago. It was less than two weeks from graduation and for some reason I decided I didn\’t want to be there anymore. I had packed a duffle bag and managed to sneak away before an afternoon formation. I hitchhiked all the way out to California, but I eventually returned to face the consequences. I had been A.W.O.L. for too long, so they decided to kick me out. Somehow, I still managed to get an honorable discharge. I have nothing bad to say about the time I spent at Ft. Sill. I think in the few months that I was there, I did some growing up and learned alot about life and I will always regret what I did. I think the military can be a good life.
    I just thought I would share this with those who have been there, those who are still there, and those who might be going there soon. My advise is to stay focused and tough it out. I know you\’ll be glad you did. Good luck to all of you!!

  26. al, sanborn

    On February 20, 2012 at 5:08 pm


    i went through training in ft. sill in 1960, i took 8 wks, basic trng. in ft. dix n.j. then 8 more in ft.sill then spent 3 yrs. in Nurnberg Germany looking back it wasn’t bad, had fun in lawton, got my first tatoo in lawton, my advice would be keep your mouth shut don’t be a smart ass and you’ll do good,

  27. New Army wife

    On June 13, 2012 at 7:17 am


    My husband just arrived at Fort Sill as I’m typing this. Its already been so hard for me, because we have a 16 month old daughter. He just left a few days ago and i feel alone already. I am so nervous for him…he called me a few times before he check in, he seems so tired and nervous. I wish can be with him so I can give him a big hug. I am not too worry about him during his BCT… and I know its only 9 weeks seperation. I am more worry about his AIT in Texas. His AIT is going to be around 46 weeks, almost a year. I hear that if you have more than 22 weeks AIT, your order going to include your family(dependants authorized) is this statement true?
    Does my husband needs to request that before his BCT start?
    Does he need to request a hardship approved order to move his family with him during his AIT? If yes, please tell me how is the proses works… and when he has to start to request that.
    I need to move to Texas at least 2 weeks after his graduation because our recent lease contract ending in the end of August and our landlord wants us to get us their house or sign another 1 year lease. We are planning to do the Dity move and live offpost in Texas.
    My other question: Does Army going to reimburse our travel cost if we start traveling while we waiting for his order(a few days before he gets his order)?
    thanks in advance!

  28. Josh

    On November 23, 2012 at 5:31 am


    Is drill sergeant Rivera still there?

  29. BAptizedbyfire

    On January 24, 2013 at 9:28 am


    i was there in 1981 and to these day i’ll never forget the decipline it thought it me.i am very proud and thankful i went thru the training .i did it.it changed me.i am now 21 years in the New York city Fire Dept .

  30. BAptizedbyfire

    On January 24, 2013 at 9:28 am


    i was there in 1981 and to these day i\’ll never forget the decipline it thought it me.i am very proud and thankful i went thru the training .i did it.it changed me.i am now 21 years in the New York city Fire Dept .

  31. Della

    On February 11, 2013 at 10:27 pm


    Nephew just got off the plane. 10 minutes out on the bus now. I love you! STAY POSITIVE!!!!

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