Maybe you know him, maybe you don’t, as he just moved to the area a couple of years ago, but Brian Geraghty brought his family to Avoca after 20 years as a Marine. After serving from 1998 to 2018, Brian retired and moved back to his home state to raise his kids and live near his wife’s family. Geraghty mentioned he’s happy to be in Avoca with his wife Steph, and his kids, Caden (13), Cole(11), and Hailey(7).
He told me that he decided to be a Marine because he wanted to do something different than what everyone else was doing! He certainly did that! While in the military, he did Signals Intelligence. We could ask him what that means exactly but I’m guessing it’s one of those, “I could tell you but then I’d have to kill you” stories! Lol.
While serving, he was stationed in Hawaii, Colorado, Virginia, and North Carolina but he happened to be in Australia at the time of 9/11. However, his story is one of actively being involved after it. To be truthful, I had to use his words because they tell the story first-hand in a way I never could.
“When 9/11 happened, I was a Corporal on my first deployment with the 15th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU). I had only been serving for 3 years. I was hanging out in a bar in Darwin, Australia, well past midnight. Almost like a movie, they cut the music and the Australian DJ said all Marines and sailors needed to immediately report back to their ships. We all thought it was a joke and they had to force us to leave. When we were walking back to the ship we saw news stories on the TVs and realized what had happened. Chaos ensued and Marines and sailors started running back to the ship. We departed immediately the next morning, steaming toward the Middle East. They actually had to cross deck sailors and Marines because in the chaos, many ended up on the wrong ships. A little more than a month passed, and we waited for the US government to figure out what to do. Then, suddenly, decisions were made and things moved very quickly. We all felt numb as we found ourselves test firing our weapons on the side of the ship and boarding helicopters for the recon and surveillance elements to insert into Pakistan. I distinctly remember when our helo rotated to take off, all of the Navy flight crew saluted us.
We headed out for the first major combat since Desert Storm. After we landed, we prepared a foothold for operations in Afghanistan. We inserted into Afghanistan in November to take our first objection: Camp Rhino and then Kandahar Airfield. From then on, serving in the military was completely different. That pinnacle moment changed everything and the rest of my career…we were in war.”
I don’t know that any of us that are civilians can possibly know what all that implied, but we all can be thankful for people like Brian who choose to serve our country, one who told me he learned the value of hard work and the dedication to a fellow brother in arms.
Even now, Retired MSgt. Geraghty travels all over the US working as a contractor for the military and proclaims that the greatest blessing of being a Marine was serving others, realizing the importance of family, and gaining many friendships. So it is no surprise that he encourages all Americans to “work together to achieve our common goals because it is more effective than letting our enemies gain the advantage.”
As we continue to hear about a country divided, think about the men and women like Brian who live right down the street that put our needs above their own and serve our country. Every last one of them have told me the same thing: this is the greatest country.
With that, I say “Welcome to Pott. Co, Brian! Thank you for your service, and we sure are glad you’re here!”