'Huge Red Sox fan' re-enlists at Fenway Park
June 13, 2013
BOSTON -- On the grounds of historic Fenway Park, Sgt. Jon Weymouth once again chose to serve his country, re-enlisting this spring as his oldest son, father, and fellow Soldiers stood by his side to support him.
Weymouth, an inspector tester with the Aerial Delivery Directorate, Natick Soldier Research, Development and Engineering Center, was raised in the small town of West Newfield, Maine. He called himself a "huge Red Sox fan" and added that he grew up watching the team.
As an eight year old, Weymouth won a radio contest that had a Father's Day promotion. He explained in a letter to the station why his was the "best dad" and scored tickets to a Red Sox doubleheader against the Indians.
"We sat next to 'Pesky pole,' and I was hooked," said Weymouth of the right-field foul pole.
Weymouth even has a Red Sox tattoo, although he noted that it was "not one of my proudest moments."
Like every true fan, Weymouth has been with his team through its ups and downs -- 2004 was a big year for Red Sox fans, especially Weymouth, after the infamous 86-year period during which the team was unable to win the World Series.
"My first son was born September 2004," said Weymouth, "the year Red Sox broke the curse.
"It was a blast to have my son there at Fenway. He could see Ted Williams' seat in right field -- longest home run in Fenway yet. He just got to kind of take in the history."
After being in the Army Reserve, Weymouth went on active duty in September 2005. His first deployment to Iraq coincided with the second Red Sox world championship of the decade.
"The Red Sox reminded me of home again," said Weymouth, recalling his deployment. "I would wake up at three in the morning to watch them in the playoffs every day. I was late to work a couple of times because the game ran long. But when they won the World Series, it was my little piece of home."
Weymouth passed on his love for baseball to his son, who enjoys reading about such baseball players as Babe Ruth, Mickey Mantle, Ted Williams and Pedro Martinez. Weymouth also coaches Little League.
It wasn't just baseball history that those gathered during Weymouth's re-enlistment experienced; all present experienced a part of U.S. history. When Soldiers re-enlist, they must again recite the oath of enlistment, as they did when they first enlisted.
The re-enlistment ceremony can be a simple affair with just a few witnesses, or something more meaningful to the Soldier. One common thread is the presence of the American flag and an officer to administer the oath. CW4 Kevin Wood, senior airdrop systems technician, swore in Weymouth.
"I've been extremely fortunate to have been asked to re-enlist over 25 Soldiers during my time as a warrant officer in the Army," Wood said. "To re-enlist a Soldier is a great honor."
Wood knows how big a Red Sox fan Weymouth is, and he elaborated on how the greater Boston area is filled with U.S. history.
"I could not think of a more appropriate place for Sergeant Weymouth to raise his hand again to recommit to the Army and continue serve the citizens of our great nation," Wood said.
For Weymouth, Fenway was the most fitting place to re-enlist.
"When you're deployed, that's all you need is something to remind you of home and what you're fighting for," said Weymouth. "Mine was my family and baseball, the great American sport."