Veterans Day: Q&A with a Bend veteran

Check out this Q&A with Tim Reams, senior administrator–Field Services and local Bend Veteran!

  • What motivated you to join the military?  I grow up in a very patriotic family.  My Grandfather served in France during WW1, my father and older brother were in the Army.  I group wanting adventure, and from an early age, I knew I want to serve in the U.S. military.
  • What branch of military did you serve and for how long?  I spent a little over 7 years in the United State Coast Guard.  The USCG was the right place for me to find and adventure.
  • What was your rank in the military? E-5
  • What was your primary job after training? I was an AD Aviation machinist mate . My primary job was working on helicopters. The US Coast Guard has a policy if you work on an aircraft you fly in the aircraft. So I was a flight mechanic on two different types of helicopters HH52A’s in HH3F’s. As a flight mechanic you do search and rescue, fisheries patrols, and law enforcement.
  • Tell us a funny story you experienced while in the military that could only happen in the military?  I was stationed in Kodiak, Alaska, and standing ready crew. Ready crew is when you stand duty waiting to be launched on a SAR (search and rescue) case. We were launched for a medevac to Cold Bay, Alaska. On long SAR cases, they would send a box lunch with us.  This would usually consist of a baloney sandwich, some chips, a piece of fruit any carton of milk.  The baloney for the sandwich was cut off of a frozen log of baloney.  In the wintertime, the baloney would never thaw out during the flight. After completing the SAR case, The captain of the Air Station asked for his box lunch. I asked him if he would like me to thaw the baloney out for him? He asked me how I was going to do that. I wiped the bottom of the main transmission off of excess oil. Using my winter flight glove, I would hold the baloney on the bottom of the transmission to thaw it; he was not amused. But flying in helicopters in the dead of winter in Alaska, that was the only way to thaw out your baloney popsicle.
  • Tell us about some of the friends you made while serving? I made many great friends while serving in the military. I even lost a few shipmates while serving. I think of them every single day. One of my dearest friends that I’m still in contact with regularly retired Chief Petty Officer David Packwood. Once or twice a week, we get together online and play World of Warships.
  • How (did) does your military experience affect your life today? It has helped make me the person I am today. I would not change the good or the bad experiences in those seven years for anything. There’s probably not too many veterans out there that would.

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