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Yakima native serves for love of country with 101st Airborne Division

Posted By News Staff On Thursday, December 27, 2012 @ 10:00 am In News | No Comments

Written by Sgt. Jon Heinrich
1st Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division (AA) Public Affairs

BastogneFort Campbell KY, 101st Airborne Division

Forward Operating Base Fenty, Afghanistan – When it comes to joining the military, the decision can be easier for some than it is for others.

For U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Christopher Dollar, a native to Yakima, WA, the decision wasn’t too hard at all.

“I joined the Army because I wanted to get out of the town that I was in, and, you know, I was trying to look at something for a career to kind of help me advance my education,” Dollar said.

U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Christopher Dollar, from Yakima, Wash., smiles after having completed outgoing fire training with 120mm mortars Dec. 2, 2012, at FOB Joyce, Afghanistan. Dollar is a gunnery sergeant with Battery A, 2nd Battalion, 320th Field Artillery Regiment, 1st Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division, and is currently a mortar crew member with 2nd Battalion, 327th Infantry Regiment, 1st BCT at Joyce. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Jon Heinrich, Task Force 1-101 PAO) [1]

U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Christopher Dollar, from Yakima, Wash., smiles after having completed outgoing fire training with 120mm mortars Dec. 2, 2012, at FOB Joyce, Afghanistan. Dollar is a gunnery sergeant with Battery A, 2nd Battalion, 320th Field Artillery Regiment, 1st Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division, and is currently a mortar crew member with 2nd Battalion, 327th Infantry Regiment, 1st BCT at Joyce. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Jon Heinrich, Task Force 1-101 PAO)

A single soldier, Dollar stated that most of his family is back home in Yakima, with his dad and sister living in Modesto, CA.

Dollar joined the Army July 2003, and is a gunnery sergeant with Battery A, 2nd Battalion, 320th Field Artillery Regiment, 1st Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division at Fort Campbell, KY. He is currently working with 2nd Battalion, 327th Infantry Regiment (No Slack), 1st BCT at FOB Joyce, Afghanistan, as a mortarman.

“I just love what I do, the camaraderie, and taking care of soldiers. I got in, and got myself into a role and a position that I like and I’ve just been sticking with it ever since.”

Staff Sgt. Christopher Dollar, a native of Yakima, Wash., loads a 120mm illumination mortar round during outgoing fire training Dec. 2, 2012, at FOB Joyce, Afghanistan. Dollar is a gunnery sergeant with Battery A, 2nd Battalion, 320th Field Artillery Regiment, 1st Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division, and is currently a mortar crew member with 2nd Battalion, 327th Infantry Regiment, 1st BCT at Joyce. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Jon Heinrich, Task Force 1-101 PAO) [2]Dollar attended basic training at Fort Sill, OK, and since then has been stationed at 2nd Bn., 82nd FAR, 3rd BCT, 1st Cavalry Division at Fort Hood, Texas, and as a recruiter for Seattle Battalion, 6th Brigade U.S. Army Recruiting Command, before arriving to his current battalion in December 2011.

Dollar also mentioned that although he was selected to be a recruiter, he still enjoyed his job and bringing soldiers into the Army.

“A lot of them, I definitely targeted probably the younger kids, but I wanted to show them there’s a way to get a better education and just not do the same things in the same town that you were doing, and show them that it was a good way,” he said. “I made a good decision and I just wanted to pass it on.”

Even though he is no longer a recruiter, Dollar says he still uses the tools he learned as a recruiter to convince Soldiers to stay in the Army.

“Well it’s just, you know, everything I do on a daily basis: trying to take care of your soldiers, trying to teach them and show them how to advance their career, maybe help them with their careers and just show them a good time, show them that this is good; these help take care of your families and if this is what you like to do, then do it,” he said.

“I like this battalion, it’s a nice battalion, I have fun with it,” he said. “I would have no problem staying with the battalion, but at the same time I don’t mind moving either. I don’t mind traveling and getting some more knowledge and just, you know, meeting new faces and going out there and seeing new places.”

“I’m gonna do at least 20 years, but someday when I’m a sergeant major maybe I’ll do more,” said Dollar. “I’m staying Army, I’m a lifer.”


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