|Notice the cameo jacket? He got that from Army Surplus!|
Just checked in on Ronnie again. He’s still in Conroe, still at the same halfway house. He’s got a new photo – in it you can see he’s grown out his beard again. Ronnie grows a beard to hide his weak chin. Now, he just looks homeless.
One of the things I learned very quickly when Ronnie came into our lives was that he used to be in the Army.
He loved the Army, and told us about his enlistment. He was stationed in Germany, he had to work hard, he was part of the motor pool. He had a dog while in Germany. Boot camp was tough.
And of course he said I would never make it in “real life”, that the military was tougher than I could handle. He usually called me “Boy” while saying this. He pronounced “Boy” with two syllables.
He wasn’t in the Army for long… about 2 years if I recall correctly. He was not a combat vet, he had a cushy assignment in Germany. He bragged about his time in the military, but he didn’t have much to say about it.
After Ronnie and Mom married, he got a dog and named her Fräulein – the German word for “young lady”. It was another reminder that he was a world-traveling ex-soldier.
Ronnie always wore Army jackets. It was another reminder that he was in the Army. He told us that they were issued to him by the Army. They didn’t have insignia or name tape on them. They were the standard olive drab jackets that were common before the US military adopted the camouflage battle dress uniform in the 1980’s.
Ronnie has been wearing military jackets for as long as I can remember. And after I joined the military I realized he was just another wannabe military poseur. The cameo jacket he’s posing in during his latest court mandated sexual predator mugshot is “US Woodland” – part of the Battle Dress Uniform that wasn’t issued by the US Military until the early 1980’s, almost a decade after Ronnie’s very brief stay with the Army.
Ronnie has always tried to cultivate this image of a capable person, experienced, a veteran who can handle himself in a fight. It’s all a facade… a fake. And when he encounters someone with real ability or power Ronnie folds up like a wet newspaper.
Ronnie’s longest commitment was the 15 years he’s spent in prison for molesting children. He should be wearing an orange jacket.