By Story and photo by Sgt. 1st Class Kelly Jo Bridgwater, 7th Sustainment Brigade Public AffairsSeptember 15, 2011
It's a love for the water that inspired Spc. Christina Behymer to become an Army watercraft operator. Assigned to the 335th Transportation Detachment, First and Finest, 24th Transportation Battalion, the 27-year old from Harrison, Ark. enlisted in to the military in 2009, the rest as they say, has been smoothing sailing.
When asked why she joined the Army and the boat field, she replied, "It was something I always wanted to do and the prime opportunity showed itself."
As for the choice of becoming an Army mariner, "I had done the research and talked to people who had knowledge about the field," she said. "I was told it was the best kept secret in the Army. I have been sailing since August of 2010, one year now, and I love it. I get the opportunity to travel, and the morale of a small crew is always high. It's like a family."
A short term goal for the First and Finest Soldier is to excel at the battalion's upcoming Soldier of the Month Board, and to complete 20-level school; a requirement for watercraft operators as they progress in rank and job responsibility.
Travel opportunities are diverse thanks to the varied missions of the LSV-1. New York City is a favorite place for the young mariner. The chance to explore the city for the first time, earlier this year during Fleet Week, presented itself. The vessel has been a part of the annual event since 2009.
"I had never been to NYC and getting to see what you see on television in person, seeing the popular sights, it is amazing," she said. "When I saw the Statue of Liberty... I was awestruck and couldn't believe I was there."
When out on the boat and down time presents itself, Spc. Behmyer likes to relax by crafting cord line.
"I like to work with line and make all sorts of things like key chains, or bracelets," she said, "and watching movies, such as PS I love you, which is a favorite. I also enjoy scary movies. I really like scary movies."
Working in a male dominated field may appear daunting to some women but that's not the case for this Soldier.
"I'm very much a tomboy when it comes to being at work," she said. "The way I work, my mentality, if you did not see me, you wouldn't think I was a female. I pull my weight. In this field the female to male ratio is very small. If females don't pull their own weight there is a tendency they may get stereotyped as not being capable of successfully performing this job."
Asked if she would like to share anything with family or friends about her life as an Army mariner, Spc. Behymer had this to say, "I miss my hometown, but I couldn't see myself being away from the ocean, and I would like to thank my mom for teaching me to have a strong work ethic, to be independent, not to depend on someone else."