Soldier keeps true to reason for serving 10 years after Sept. 11
August 31, 2011
CAMP ARIFJAN, Kuwait, Aug. 31, 2011 -- In September 2001, Keenan Miles, from Belfair, Wash., was sitting on his mother's couch when he turned on the television. The first thing he saw was images of the twin towers on fire, smoke billowing from where commercial jet liners had impacted them. While watching people jumping from the burning towers, Miles could not believe his eyes.
Miles was already considering service in one branch of the armed forces prior to the attacks but had some trouble while attempting to join the Marine Corps.
"Most of my family is military," he said. "I have a lot of pride in my country, and I've always wanted to serve."
Watching the U.S. come under attack affected Miles so deeply, he was instantly motivated to join the Army Reserve. Today he holds the rank of sergeant.
"9/11 pushed me to join the Army," Miles said. "It was hard to see the attacks and not want to do something about it."
Ten years later, Miles has gotten over his disbelief and serves as a health care specialist with the 6250th United States Army Hospital in Fort Lewis, Wash. Miles brought his self-motivation to the Third Army team while deployed to Camp Arifjan, Kuwait.
Miles picked his job because of his desire to help people, which stems from his family's military history.
"I chose to become a health care specialist because I could chameleon into any unit and help anyone and everyone," Miles admitted.
Even outside work, Miles shapes the future by helping where he can, said Capt. Carpaccio Owens, Deputy Surgeon, 1st Theater Support Command, and a native of Fort Bragg, N.C.
"He gives pointers to people working out in the gym, even people he doesn't really know," stated Owens. "People take one look at Miles and can tell he works out a lot, so they usually follow his advice."
Owens explained how Miles' mere presence inspires the best in people by giving them an example to follow.
"He brings a lot of energy to our workout," Owens mentioned. "I can see his motivation, and it pushes me to try harder."
Miles said he feels good about what he has done with the Army, and is so dedicated to improving himself that he and Owens work out at the gym daily.
"I feel like I have fulfilled my mission so far, but there is always more I can do for my fellow soldiers and the people of the world," Miles said.
Even while on temporary assignment in the mailroom at Camp Arifjan, Miles strives to shape Third Army's future by helping soldiers, the very reason he joined the Army ten years ago.