Athens Review, Athens, Texas

Breaking News

Local News

June 7, 2014

Cross Roads veteran talks of military life

Athens — It takes more than a few good men and women to give the U.S. its military presence around the globe.

Twenty-eight-year-old Scott Conditt is ready to move on to the next state of his life after serving in the Army on two continents. The Cross Roads graduate says he’s proud of the eight years he served  in the military.

“Military is not just about learning to shoot a gun,” Conditt said. “They teach you how to live your life as well, and how to take care of yourself in every way possible.”

Conditt went to school in Cross Roads from kindergarten through the 12th grade. He played on the Cross Roads Bobcats football team that earned the school’s first playoff berth in the sport. Conditt was also on the golf team that went to state.

“I come from a poor family. To get the college and everything, my family couldn’t pay for that,” Conditt said. “To get the G.I. Bill was important. And to serve my country was an important part of it.”

When Conditt went into the Army, he was sent to Fort Sill, Okla. His military occupational specialty was ammunition specialist.

“I worked with 9 mil, up to the hell-fire rockets on the Apache helicopters, just doing inventories and inspections,” Conditt said.

The first day of camp made him wonder if going into the Army had been the right choice.

“After I gave it a few days, I wasn’t nervous about it,” Conditt said.

Soon, he was deployed to Baghdad, Iraq, where he served 15 months.

“When I arrived, my first impression was that it was very hot,” Conditt said. “The first day I got there it was 80 degrees when we landed. I thought it was a regular Texas summer. By the time 15-hundred hours came, at 3 o’clock, it was 140 degrees.

“When I was there, I worked alongside Iraqis loading up trucks, and taking them out on missions,” Conditt said. “A lot of them spoke English very well. That was a great experience.  They’re doing dangerous work. If the bad guys find out they’re working for us, they’ll kill their whole family. I respected those guys, because they’re working for their family.”

Conditt said there were a few enemy attacks while he was in Baghdad, but it didn’t keep him from doing his job.

“I reenlisted while I was there in Baghdad,” Conditt said. “In fact, I reenlisted in one of Saddam Hussein’s palaces.”

Conditt signed up for another six years. He said he takes pride in serving his country, and knowing that only about one percent of the  population is in military service.

“To be a part of that small group was awesome to me,” Conditt said. “We live by a saying, If we don’t — who will?”

Conditt’s next overseas duty was in South Korea. He tried squid and octopus, and liked them just fine. The traditional fermented vegetable dish, Kimchi, didn’t suit his taste as well.

“I tried the spicy and the regular kind,” Conditt said.

Most South Koreans were extremely pro-American, and helped welcome the U.S. soldiers.

“They’ve worked along with us for 60 years now,” Conditt said. “Most of the people know we’re there for them, and want to keep North Korea out of South Korea.”

Conditt returned to the U.S. after four years in South Korea, and is now headed for a new adventure, to work in the oil fields near the West Texas Town of Kermit.  He also plans to get to spend more time with his son and daughter.

Conditt encourages those graduating from high school or college, who might be looking into a military career to consider it, and make sure it’s the right path for them.

“It’s a very high honor to get to serve your country,” Conditt said. “You’ve got to go in with an open mind, and be ready for some changes. The military changes every five minutes. You’ll be adapting all of your career.”

Conditt said it might be a good practice for young people in this country to have a mandatory term of  service, like they have in South Korea.

“We have values we live by in the army,” Conditt said. “Leadership, duty, personal courage, honor, integrity, and all those things you can take to a new job.”





Text Only
Local News
  • DSC_0005.JPG Hydrating first responders

    First responders were invited Wednesday to the Athens Brookshire’s grocery to celebrate a promotion formulated by the store.  When customers purchase five 32-ounce bottles of Gatorade, they will receive 200 points. Customers are encouraged to donate the Gatorade to first responders. The promotion will last one month. Shown, from left, are Brookshire’s Store Manager Charles Beasley, Athens Police Department Patrolman Wesley Hoover, APD Cpl. Billy Westover, APD Assistant Chief Rodney Williams, APD Lt. Jeremy Hugghins, APD Patrolman Taylor Chancellor, APD Sgt. Eddie Smith, APD Chief Buddy Hill, Athens Fire Department Firefighter Brian Davis, AFD Firefighter Aaron Munn and AFD Firefighter Payton Lambe.

    July 31, 2014 1 Photo

  • ADR logo.tif HC fine-tuning application to get CETZ funds

    It’s been three months since Henderson County got word that money has been allocated from the Texas Department of Transportation in the form of a County Energy Transportation Zone grant, but Commissioners Court is still fine-tuning its application to get the funds.

    July 31, 2014 1 Photo

  • 7-31 stokes mug.jpg Police arrest suspect with meth and scales

    A 47-year-old woman faces felony drug charges after she was arrested in Athens Tuesday morning.
    Connie Loraine Stokes was booked into the Henderson County Jail for manufacture/delivery of a controlled substance, possession of drug paraphernalia and a traffic offense.

    July 31, 2014 1 Photo

  • 7-31 free concert.jpg Corbin to perform at Cain Center

    Easton Corbin will be in Athens on Sunday, Aug. 3 to say “Thank You” with a free concert at the Cain Center. The invitation-only concert will begin at 4:30 p.m. The concert is free, but a ticket is required. Tickets can be obtained from any Athens or Brownsboro Future Farmers of America (FFA) member.

    July 31, 2014 1 Photo

  • 7-31 Bark for life.jpg Bark for Life honors contributions of Canine Caregivers

    In honor of Canine Caregivers, Bark for Life, an American Cancer Society event, will be held at  Gun Barrel City Park on Saturday, Sept. 6 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.
    The event is to honor the life-long contributions of Canine Caregivers. It's an opportunity for everyone to be empowered through their canine companion partnership and to contribute to cancer cures.

    July 31, 2014 1 Photo

  • Bryan (pictured center) with the rest of team United States.jpg Mabank High School senior represents USA

    Amanda Woods of Mabank is very proud of her son, and for good reason. Seventeen-year-old Bryan Henderson, a senior at Mabank High School, just came home from playing baseball in Europe.
    In January of 2014, Woods received an e-mail from a college coach in New York. In that e-mail was an invitation for Bryan to join a 22-man baseball team to play 10 games against French and German National teams.

    July 31, 2014 1 Photo

  • 7-31 CCL Rotary.jpg Silent auction Saturday, August 9

    Andrea Pickens at Tri-County Ford is collecting silent auction items for the upcoming Rotary at Cedar Creek Lake Celebrity Waiter event. Celebrity Waiter, the largest fundraiser the Rotary hosts, is scheduled for Saturday, Aug. 9 at Athens Country Club. Any business wanting to donate an item to the silent auction can contact Kathi Nailling at 903-340-7597 or Andrea Pickens at 903-887-2121.

    July 31, 2014 1 Photo

  • ADR logo.tif Third elementary school to replace Athens Intermediate School

    The Athens Independent School District school board approved campus realignment Monday that will go into effect for the 2015-16 school year.
    While full details of the plan are still being discussed, the district unanimously approved adding a third elementary school, while doing away with the intermediate level.

    July 30, 2014 1 Photo

  • DSC_0128.JPG Laying Splash Pad bricks

    Workmen from Rosenberg’s Outdoor Designs of Athens are shown installing bricks purchased by individuals, businesses and other organizations at the Kiwanis Park Splash Pad.  Shown, left to right, are: Nick Rosenberg, owner of the company; Jonathan Perez and Gutierrez Concepcion.

    July 30, 2014 1 Photo

  • ADR logo.tif Burton’s severance approved

    The Athens City Council on Monday narrowly approved a budget amendment from reserves, to fund a severance package for City Administrator Pam Burton who is retiring at the end of 2014.
    Mayor Jerry Don Vaught and council members Monte Montgomery and Tres Winn entered yes votes, while Joe Whatley and Charles Elliott opposed the adjustment.

    July 30, 2014 1 Photo