As I'm sure you all know by now, the Army (more generally, the federal government) loves acronyms. Because of this obsession, I am now considered a REFRADer. This term means RElease From Active Duty.
Yes, that's right, I have asked the Army to release me from my active duty contract. This can happen as early as a year from one's End Time in Service (ETS) date, which for me is 19 Sep 2010. This means that on 20 Sep of next year, I will no longer be on active duty; instead, I will either be in a drilling Reserve or Inactive Reserve component. This difference between the two is pretty self-explanatory, in one I drill one weekend a month and two weeks a year, while in the other I don't do anything, but can get put back on active duty if another conflict arises. If I haven't already stated this, an individual makes an eight year obligation to the military when he or she signs a contract. Mandatory years of active duty are really the only thing that distinguishes the commitment. I agreed to serve a minimum of three years active duty, while another might elect to only be in the Reserve.
Although technically I submitted my Unqualified Resignation (UQR), this distinction is very minute from the REFRAD. So, now I am one of those guys getting out before the Brigade deploys again (good Lord willing). Despite having over 365 days until I get out, it can arrive in the blink of an eye, so now Leslie and I are preparing for our relocation back home....in good ole K-town!
Hope all is well with you and yours.