Our guest for this week is my friend Frank Aburto - a Senior Manager focusing on Financial Planning and Analysis for Audible, the world's largest provider of audio-books.
Frank grew up with a family who served in the military. He joined in 2000 when he went to West Point and took East Asian Studies & Mandarin Chinese. He chose to go the officer route instead of ROTC or enlisting during high school because he wanted to have something else in case he wanted to get out of the military.
After graduating in 2004, he was commissioned as an armor and cavalry officer and spent a year in South Korea as his first duty station. He eventually moved to 2nd Stryker Brigade in Hawaii and completed a 15-month deployment in Camp Taji, Northern Baghdad.
We talked about his journey of applying to West Point and memorable moments during his 4-year stay there. He also shared his experience at Fort Knox when taking up Officer Basic Course, how was he able to choose South Korea and Hawaii as his first and second duty stations, and how his 15-month deployment in Camp Taji changed him personally along with the lessons he learned.
He also shared some untold stories from his deployment, what made him decide to get out of the military, his fallen comrades from his class, and the struggles of keeping in touch with other members of his West Point class as a civilian.
"For me, how much pain can you take and still be successful, and this is what it takes to be successful, and how you think like two or three steps ahead." – Frank Aburto
“I trained 4 years at West Point for this and then all this time and now I’m basically sitting here, my most serious injury is like a paper cut” – Frank Aburto
“It (my 15-month deployment) showed me what I was capable of. It showed me what I could handle.” -Frank Aburto
In This Episode:
- Which family members joined the military [1:20]
- Why Frank chose the officer route instead of ROTC or enlisting [2:21]
- Frank’s journey of applying to West Point [2:58]
- How many times did Navy beat Army during his 4 years at West Point [7:14]
- Memorable stories from the barracks at West Point [7:57]
- Last fun memory he had before graduating [10:21]
- Frank’s memories at Fort Knox [11:45]
- Story where he chose South Korea as his first duty station [18:25]
- Other stories when Frank was in Korea [21:40]
- Story of how Frank chose Hawaii as his second duty station [26:38]
- Timeline of his stay in Hawaii and deployment in Camp Taji [31:26]
- How Frank’s 15-month stay in Camp Taji changed him [33:54]
- Funny stories during Frank’s deployment [37:40]
- Stories Frank never shared before [45:24]
- What made him get out [50:13]
- Stories of people from his class who passed away [52:40]
Links & Resources Mentioned in this Episode: