A Retiring Soldier for Life Reflects on “Amazing, Unusual” Army Career

Maj. Crystal Boring, Communications Director, U.S. Army Soldier for Life

“It looked like fun, and it was fun!” said Lt. Col. Bradford Miners, reflecting on his 26-year long Army career. He decided to join in October 1989, commissioning as an acquisitions officer through ROTC at Bucknell University. Now he is the Director of Industry Engagement in the Army’s new Cyber Command.

“I’ve had some amazing, unusual assignments,” he said. Atypical of most Soldiers, Miners spent 18 years in Germany. The Army sent him to language school, and he became fluent in both German and French. After 20 years of service, Miners began thinking of retirement. “I was still having fun,” he said, so he stayed in.

Miners attended the Association of the United States Army’s (AUSA) annual meeting in Washington, D.C., from October 12-14, 2015, as part of what he calls his “career exploration.” He officially retires on November 30 and wants to continue working in the defense industry.

“When you join the Army you know you’re going to get out one day,” Miners said. “There’s a fear of the unknown, but we experience that every time we PCS,” he added, of his upcoming transition to civilian life.

On top of finding meaningful employment, Miners is motivated to give back. “I look forward to getting involved in community service,” he said. “Everyone should participate in community service.”

As he considers what his next career move is, he has some advice for the next generation of Soldiers: “The Army provides opportunities for any kind of career—from dog handler to musician to infantry,” he said. “Do what you enjoy and you’ll do well.” He also encourages everyone to attend the Soldier for Life-Transition Assistance Program at least twice.

After three years or 30, every Soldier will one day take off their uniform for the last time. For sixty years the U .S. Army Retirement Services Office (RSO) has supported those Soldiers and Families that retire from service, helping them remain strong as Soldiers for Life. Join Soldier for Life in celebrating RSO’s 60th Anniversary on social media: www.facebook.com/CsaSoldierForLife, www.twitter.com/CSASoldier4Life, #RSO60Years.