News>Reservist reenlists after 19-year break in service; sworn in by son
Scott Long recites the Oath of Enlistment after his son, U.S. Army 2nd Lt. Brandon Long, during a ceremony July 28, 2011, in Valdosta, Ga. Lieutenant Long is a liaison officer with the 1-169 Aviation Support Battalion and said he was honored to preside over his father’s ceremony since his father pinned on his officer rank earlier this year. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Jamal D. Sutter)
Scott Long recites the Oath of Enlistment during a ceremony July 28, 2011, in Valdosta, Ga. After a 19-year break in service, Long said his biggest challenge in reenlisting was making sure he was still physically and medically qualified. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Jamal D. Sutter)
by Airman 1st Class Jarrod Grammel
23rd Wing Public Affairs
8/10/2011 - VALDOSTA, Ga. -- Nineteen years after separating from the active duty Air Force, Staff Sgt. Scott Long, 476th Maintenance Squadron fuel systems craftsman, enlisted into the Air Force Reserve.
Sergeant Long's son, U.S. Army 2nd Lt. Brandon Long, 1-169 Aviation Support Battalion liaison officer, presided over the July 28 ceremony.
"When I decided to reenlist, I was looking into the future," said Sergeant Long, who is now 51. "I always regretted getting out, even though it was the right decision at the time."
Before his early separation in 1992 after 11 years of service, he was stationed in numerous countries and states, finally settling down at Moody Air Force Base, Ga.
"What makes Sergeant Long a special case is that he has a 19-year break in service," said Tech. Sgt. Jeffrey Walker, Eastern Recruiting Squadron line recruiter. "He will bring back knowledge and heritage to the newer generation of Airmen."
Lieutenant Long was happy to have the chance to preside over his father's reenlistment ceremony.
"It's a special event, and a rare opportunity to do a reenlistment ceremony as a young officer, especially for my father," he said.
"I'm really happy for him. He has been talking about reenlisting for a long time, and he is happy to have the chance to serve his country again."
The lieutenant, who is currently waiting to leave for pilot training got commissioned in May 2011 during a ceremony where his father pinned his rank on.
"It has been a dream of mine to serve in the military ever since I was young," said Lieutenant Long. "I really wanted to join the Air Force, but my college only had an Army ROTC program. I got a slot for pilot training in the Army, and I have always wanted to fly so it didn't matter which service.
"My father's service definitely influenced my decision to join the military," he added. "It's a family legacy. His father was a Marine in World War II and my other grandfather was in the Navy."
At more than 50 years old and 19 years after leaving active duty, Sergeant Long faced challenges when reenlisting.
"The biggest challenge in reenlisting after all this time was making sure I was physically fit," he said. "You also have to make sure you are still medically qualified."
Only a few months after his son's commissioning and 19 years after leaving active duty, Sergeant Long chose to once again put on a uniform and serve in the Air Force.
"I am just proud to have the opportunity to serve my country again, and contribute more than just my tax dollars."
8/17/2011 2:16:34 PM ET This is fantastic. Congratulations to the Long family. I am a former US Army officer and Chinook helicopter pilot. I have had a five year break in service and am just starting to find a way to re-enter service. Staff Sergeant is an inspiration to me. Thank you
Bryan Dunn, Philadelphia
8/12/2011 10:29:04 AM ET This is a true example of a parent who raised his son and is now receiving the benefits of his labor. Wow. When I read about this it reminded me of the sacrifices I made for my children and now I to reap the fruit of my labor. All my children are serving or have served thier country. Makes me smile to know there is a remnant of youth who hold the same values as their parents by honoring our nation in service. Anyone can see SSgt Long is a proud father.