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  • #2317549

    Military and holiday’s – faded memory


    by lordinfidel ·

    I know this sounds like a weird question. But I know that there are current and old members of the military on this site.

    I was having a discussion with my wife about holiday’s and being in the army. Now this is going back 10 years now since I left the army. But for the life of me, I can not recall ever having holiday’s off.

    Maybe my memory is just not what it used to be. But I clearly remember working on the 4th, thanksgiving and even christmas. Although it was not a heavy workday, more putzing around, waiting to be dismissed. But you still had to show up to formation.

    Is my memory just that jaded and warped. Or am I not hallucinating?

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    • #3379399

      Reply To: Military and holiday’s – faded memory

      by mrbill- ·

      In reply to Military and holiday’s – faded memory

      It depends on duty schedule. I was USAF and most of my career I was a 5-day a week worker. We usually got the Fed holidays off with standby covering any trouble calls. I did work some 7/24 jobs, then we worked with reduced manning if possible. I do remember one supervisor scheduling me for T?day, Christmas and New Year once. I was the only one he did that too. He said I was the only one he thought he could trust to show up those days. I should have been less dependable in my youth.

      I also remember when I was at Ramstien AB GE every three day weekend seemed to be preceded by a weeklong ?Local Salty Nation? exercise. They would sometimes run into Saturday and Sunday. Not good for morale!

      I do remember getting a whole week off at Christmas without leave, as long as we were not more than a days drive away.

    • #3379393

      Reply To: Military and holiday’s – faded memory

      by mrafrohead ·

      In reply to Military and holiday’s – faded memory

      I can say as my dad has increased in rank he has had to work a lot less holidays.

      Though, now due to his rank, he has to always make appearances on Thanksgiving and Christmas, as he runs the mess halls. I think there may even be a few other holidays, but those I know for sure.

      Hope that helps. Btw – this is current as of now, so hopefully that can fill in the last ten years. 😉

    • #3379379


      by timwalsh ·

      In reply to Military and holiday’s – faded memory

      Can’t speak for how militaries outside the US handled holidays. Obviously, there are some jobs that just don’t stop for holidays (such jobs as cooks, military police, firefighters, air traffic control, range control, guard duty, etc., don’t stop just because a holiday was declared). Also just as obvious, ongoing operations also affect your ability to get time off for holidays. Each branch of the military also tends to have its own unique factors that affect holidays (I also can’t speak for how other services handled holidays).

      For me, (to give a time perspective) I joined the (US) Army in ’77 and retired in ’98. Generally, other than training schools (depending on the type of training), or during active deployments, we ALWAYS got holidays off. In fact, early in my career the Army generally tried to turn 3-day weekends (surrounding holidays) into 4-day weekends (by giving commanders the option to declare training holidays).

      Can’t speak for your recollections (again it depends on what your job was and even where you were stationed), but by law, all federal employees (to include the military) get federal holidays off unless their job is considered “mission essential” (in which case you usually got comp time for working a holiday)

      • #3379354

        I guess it ‘s just my memory

        by lordinfidel ·

        In reply to Holidays

        I was always in combat arms (88-94).

        Maybe I did have days off and I just don’t remember. I remember being in the field alot. I know when we were not on deployment I had sat/sun off. Or if you had staff duty, you got the next day off.

        I remember ‘passes’. But I also clearly remember showing up to formation on the fourth every year. Maybe it was just the units I was one.

        But like the holdiday that just passed, labor day. For the life of me though I just don’t remember having days like that off. Or having three day weekends.

        Maybe I have been working in IT too long to remember what having actual days off are. Or maybe I am just getting old and my memory sucks.

    • #3379336

      military is usually 24/7

      by maxwell edison ·

      In reply to Military and holiday’s – faded memory

      I was always part of a 24/7 duty station, and holidays were just like any other day for many, if not most, G.I.s. Usually there were 4-5 crews to cover the full time, and this allowed for a 40 hour week, with certain crews being on while others being off. When the holidays came around, manning was maybe shuffled up a bit to allow some to have the time off, but others had to be there.

      What really gets me is Veteran’s Day. I hate it – as a veteran – when I have to work all day while all the young chicks at the bank get a paid day off. What’s wrong with this picture?

      (USAF 72-78)

      • #3379324

        Sorry couldn’t resist

        by oz_media ·

        In reply to military is usually 24/7

        “young chicks at the bank get a paid day off. What’s wrong with this picture?”

        Maybe because you’re not a young chick? Better them than you running around on a sunny day.

        • #3379310

          Most of Corporate America has forgotten that day

          by jimhm ·

          In reply to Sorry couldn’t resist

          Most of corporate America has forgotten about that day – They don’t remember why it was created and they don’t seem to care to either.

          When I got discharged in 1975 almost lost a new job when VD day came around and the boss said what a wasted holiday its all BS… What kept me employed was his father (owner) was WWII Marine Vet – when he heard us arguing – wanted to know why … I repeated his Sons comments about VD day.. Ouch … I quite soon after – kid had it out for me … because daddy had it out for him..

          If the company doesn’t have it I schedule a vacation day, Boss would ask why – didn’t need to say it more than once – Paid for that day with 6 years of risking my life… I think its pretty cheap price for corporations to pay for the free market they enjoy from the blood of the vets…

          Banks in US get every freaking holiday that anyone can think of – but their pay scale is about 20% below market for positions, so I guess it all balances out. But they do have some great looking chicks… great during those long hot summer days… Oh Yea – And don’t forget about the US teachers – 180 day year – every freaking holiday – plus – 2 weeks at Christmas – 2 Weeks at Eastern – All summer off – they teach 4 – 45 minute classes – days over (oh my they have to grade papers) … thats a cake walk..

    • #3379333


      by oz_media ·

      In reply to Military and holiday’s – faded memory

      You see, now that ANOTHER problem I have with the military. NO HOLIDAYS !!! sounds like another presidential idea!

      Be all you can be, sure just don’t take any time to do it. 😉

      Just joking guys, relax.

      • #3379129

        I know sarcasm – or was is that cynicism

        by jimhm ·

        In reply to More

        Oh – Yea – A little sarcasm I know or was it cynicism …

        But hey – what do you do if your in the field in the middle of a good fire fight. And the next day is a US holiday but not the other guys holiday. We stop fighting – Oh yea that would work …

        Sorry – that’s all in your contract – OK pay sucks when you base it on hourly wage – about $1.12 an hour .. but thats 24 hours a day you get paid…

        Yea – it sucked sitting in at a fire base on Christmas 1972 – but hey it’s all part of the job … Yea if your family wanted to get you presents by then they had to mail them in July! – or if you wanted to get presents home – mailed by June … Hey the military mail system was great – NOT….

        • #3378995

          Gotta laugh

          by oz_media ·

          In reply to I know sarcasm – or was is that cynicism

          “$1.12 an hour .. but thats 24 hours a day you get paid… ”
          Hey that’s $3.36 /hr !! Not bad if you’re collecting pop cans for a living. (actually those guys make a LOT more than that).

          I just don’t see that as much of an incentive, now I must admit, to defend your country shouldn’t take added incentives, but when you’re sent to some foreign land to destroy people, the intelligence and training that was supplied to them by your own government, I’d want them to cough up a little more dough or they can do it themselves.

          I commend soldier, I don’t commend the governments actions.
          Train the Taliban > Fight the Taliban
          Train and supply Iraqi arms > destroy Iraqi arms

          They gotta start making decisions that make sense.

    • #3379321

      This all depends

      by rknrlkid ·

      In reply to Military and holiday’s – faded memory

      As I recall, it all depended on where I was. When I was in Korea (84-85) it always seemed like when a long weekend was coming up we went to the field ::laffs:: Back in CONUS, I definitely remember getting long weekends (sometimes 4 day weekends). My second to last duty station was Hawaii (95-98), and the 25th Division had this thing where if there was not a three-day weekend in a given month, they had a training holiday. So I did get many holidays off.

      However, like you, I don’t remember getting ALL holidays off. Like Veterans Day or Memorial Day. These were holidays which should have benefitted us, but instead we ended up doing parades or ceremonies. So it was in reality a work day. I was a military policeman my first enlistment, and distinctly remember working holidays. I had charge of quarters both Christmas Eve and the day before Thanksgiving two years in a row.

      My only real gripe was that it seemed like we were always in the field during Superbowl!

      • #3379302

        NTC 2 years in a row

        by lordinfidel ·

        In reply to This all depends

        My first 2 years was with the 75th inf (rgr). Both of those years we were at NTC during the superbowl.

        Now i’m was/am not a big fan of football. I just found it funny that someone else was in the field at the same time.

        We had tv’s set up outside so we can watch it though. No sitting, everyone just stood around as the wind began blowing really fn hard.

    • #3379313

      Never a Holiday in the Military – 24x7x52-30

      by jimhm ·

      In reply to Military and holiday’s – faded memory

      You are correct – there is never a holiday in the service – you are on 24x7x52-30 (24 hours, 7 days a week, 52 weeks a year, 30 days leave) …

      You want the holiday off – you schedule a leave day.. unless your on a ship then forget about it. You have to wait to get into port – then schedule it around your ships departure times…

      Holidays like – Christmas – yea right sitting in a mud hole singing silent night – new years, crack that warm beer – Easter – Vet’s day – 4th of July you may get something good to eat..set off a few claymores… –

      Oh yea – how many Saturdays and Sundays did you have off… Try duty on a ship – you maybe lucky to get 1 in 15 days off … depending on your duty section… Oh then General Quarters drills – doesn’t matter if your sleeping – shitting – showering – or working its all hands.. and that could be a 12 or 14 hour drill.

      But your memory is clear as a bell – No such thing as a holiday in the military – no such thing as a weekend – What was that about shift work… Your memory is very good and you are correct..

    • #3379159

      Here’s a twist!

      by guruofdos ·

      In reply to Military and holiday’s – faded memory

      UK armed forces are on call 24/7. If you are dutied on a holiday, you do your shift, end of story!

      Several of our guys are civillian contractors to the US Army in Kosovo and Germany. If there is a US National holiday then we get given the day off! This works even better in Germany, as we get German national holidays off too. But there is a downside. As employees of a UK company, British workers are nomally entitled to UK statutory holidays too (Bank Holidays, Good Friday, Boxing Day etc.)but although the US Army give us US holidays and national holidays in the ‘host country’ they don’t give us our own holidays!

    • #3378974

      In my jarhead days,

      by road-dog ·

      In reply to Military and holiday’s – faded memory

      My unit usually cut back to a skeleton crew on holidays. I was single with a not very close family, so I didn’t usually have anywhere to go.

      My price for taking a duty shift was usually $50.00 and a bottle of Jack Daniel’s black label, a small price to pay for Christmas off….

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