Discretion is the Better Part of Valor...

   This is not some gung-ho kid's attempt at finding glory. This is not  some  appeasement program that allows one to feel "important". This is the Civil Air Patrol, now part of Homeland Security. More specifically, it's  the brotherhood of which I became a part at age thirteen. I needed a  "waiver" just to attend BB at such a young age.

   The aforementioned is virtue enough to live by, and are also words spoken  to a few cadets "caught" discussing how this issue would be handled back at the ole 44033, now VT 033. The Gentlemen speaking was then BGen William Cass. The cadets having the conversation were myself and two others from my squadron.

   Let me tell you something. Those words still, to this very day, are vivid and clear to me. When I came home from BB in 1983 I was VERY quiet. I had been humbled. I had been assisted in understanding my inherent individual insignificance... and yet, my indispensable position within the blue beret community... the same as all of you.

   It was back then that I learned of brotherhood. It was among those ranks that I came to understand the word elite, and the veritable responsibility that comes with that "label". remember that you did not start this program, that we are merely borrowers of the program... and that we must prepare that program for the grandchildren of our grandchildren. We must be responsible not only for ourselves, but for our brethren and for future "carriers of the flame"... for those that will follow.

   You put that headgear upon your head, you now represent me. You now represent the men and women that came before... and you carry that weight on behalf of all those that will come after. We Inherently rely upon each other... It is you, me, and all of us that must defend the honor of the blue beret. The NCRSSC was here before I was. It is our responsibility to defend the reputation of the organization through our own acts of integrity.

   "The Mission Comes First..."

   The mission, folks, in the instant case... is rebuilding and strengthening an organization and its reputation to a point that the CAPSSC is implemented as a tool for strengthening the entire organization.

   This is the 21st Century. ego is not on the menu for the next hundred years. Integrity, perseverance, persistence, dependability, honor, courage, commitment... These are the very tenets we must defend.

   And no, gentlemen, I am not running for Governor and am not interested in your "votes". I work for a livin'. period.

   Let me tell you gentlemen something. Blue beret taught me persistence, leadership, and the underlying will to succeed. I am, at age 36, president and CEO of a company called KRUSNEI, LLC, a division of which is our tactical operations division- a group of spec ops operators (USMC RECON, Navy SEAL, SF, PJ, and the lot). My second in command (executive VP) is a USMC Lt Col, and a RECON Marine himself.

   "Business as usual" for us today, is soliciting state and federal agencies to get our shooters out on the borders of the US to assist in defending this great nation for it's history and citizenship today and our posterity tomorrow. likewise, this organization handles security assignments for organizations, individuals, and companies both domestically and abroad. Proof of life assignments are real, and we market an entity that is more than adept at the "snatch and grab".

   Before any of that...

   I am still the 13 year old cadet that left VT in the back of a pick up for Oshkosh, WI with a couple buddies from his CAP squadron, and came home a blue beret; came home "older", quieter, and wiser.

   Remember that moment of pride. We all felt it. Don't we owe it to the kids that will follow? Let us all work together to defend the reputation of "Colonel" Cass, of this program, and of each other. That is how we will get through.

   So, in a nutshell, yeah... this is very serious.


   Paul D. Neier


    NOTE: Paul received his Beret at Blue Beret '83

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