Sky Perez


Chase Smith, Reporter

In 2007 Sky Perez joined the US Army following in his parents footsteps. Perez was struggling to keep a job and needed stability. His parents fully supported his decision and were excited for him. Fourteen and a half years later he is still in the Army. Perez served in Afghanistan from 2008-2009 and Kuwait/Iraq from 2016-2017. 

When asked how the military affects his life today, Perez responded, “I’m currently mobilized to Fort McCoy, WI to assist with the refugees from Afghanistan. So where the mission is a noble one it’s hard to leave my family.” There are almost 13,000 Afghan refugees at the Ft. McCoy base and about half of them are children. “I believe I would still have joined. I would put more effort into my career than I did at the beginning though,” he said when he was asked if he would still join if he could go back in time. Perez has learned many lessons and says the Army changed his life for the better, but with that comes some negatives. Perez stated, “My least favorite thing would be being away from my family. I’ve learned that there are times where you have to make personal sacrifices to ensure others are taken care of.” Soldiers sacrifice valuable time with their loved ones and even put their lives on the line to protect people. 

When asked what his favorite thing about being in the military Perez responded, “My favorite thing about joining is molding young soldiers into effective leaders for the Army and personal lives.” Perez previously worked at Lincoln’s ChalleNGe Academy where he did that exact thing. He, along with many other service members, are paving the way for these young kids that could someday help save the lives of many people. 

When Perez was deployed to Afghanistan, he was a Rifleman in the Security Force for a Provincial Reconstruction Team where he guarded Airforce doctors and engineers who assessed village needs to provide support to reconstruction efforts. When in Kuwait and Iraq he was in charge of maintaining the Nuclear, Biological, Chemical, Reconnaissance Vehicles (NBC-RVs) for the Hazardous Response Team for the Army central Command Region. People like him are why we celebrate Veterans Day. They have sacrificed so much to help this country and the least we can do for them is show our appreciation.