I am an American Soldier
I am a warrior and a member of a team
I serve the people of the United States and live the Army Values.
I will always place the mission first.
I will never accept defeat.
I will never quit.
I will never leave a fallen comrade.
I am disciplined, physically and mentally tough, trained and proficient in my warrior tasks and drills.
I always maintain my arms, my equipment, and myself.
I am an expert, and I am professional.
I stand ready to deploy, engage, and destroy the enemies of the United States of America in close combat.
I am a guardian of freedom and the American way of life.
I am an American Soldier.
I remember first reciting those words by heart with my battle buddies in basic training. At the beginning the words had little meaning. However, by the end of basic training, they were so deeply ingrained in my heart that they were like a prayer. The very words brought tears to my eyes. When I got to my unit, on those tough pt days, when I wanted to give up and fall out of a run, 1sg Parks would yell, “I WILL NEVER QUIT!” Bringing those words back to me. When my kids wanted to give up I made them recite the Soldiers Creed. We all knew it. I will never leave a fallen comrade. Being a medic in the Army, this was especially crucial. We left NO man behind, friendly or foe. As much as I hated the Afghanies. I had to provide them with care. Sgt Alcantara is the second one I know of within a month that has committed suicide. Lt. Col. Flando Jackson died while overseas in August. When will the military get a handle on the problem that exists within it’s ranks. How many more Soldiers must take their own lives? I served alongside Sgt Alcantera. We deployed together. He went on my convoys. He was a happy-go-lucky man, with a beautiful wife and children. Words cannot express the sadness I feel in my heart right now.