Those choosing to pursue a career in the armed forces share a collective set of experiences and a sense of dedication rarely understood by those outside of military circles.
And in the case of local veteran Mike Fayette, the camaraderie and perseverance exhibited by he and his fellow veterans can truly serve as an inspiration to the next generation of citizensoldiers.
Born in the rural community of Paris, Tenn., in 1962, Fayette performed well in school and was able to earn an academic scholarship to Memphis State University.
But like so many collegebound freshman, Fayette found it difficult to remain focused on his studies and left college during his second year of attendance.
"I still wanted to finish up my education, and my father told me he knew a guy that could help me," stated Fayette.
"He took me to see an Army recruiter," he quipped.