Bruce Rundberg January Hometown Hero

These brave individuals have dedicated their lives to safeguarding our freedoms and upholding the values we hold dear; below is our interview with this month’s winner and the photo of the winner! Our winners receive awards such as an engraved knife supplied by Casey Hendrickson, a plaque by our friend Goose, tickets to “Remember: Honoring the Legacy of Veterans Past and Present” supplied by FreedomSystem.org and 95.3 MNC!

February 29, 2024

Introduction to Bruce – January’s Hometown Hero

Nomination Narrative: In his service to his country, Bruce attained the rank of E5 Sergeant. Bruce was a scout squad leader, completed one tour in Iraq, Airbourne qualifications, and finished His time in service as a sniper team leader. Bruce sets a good example of integrity and leadership when it comes to daily routine in His personal life outside of the military. In His role as a supervisor for Adams and Westlake LTD. He has been successful. He was given more responsibilities in another dept. at Adlake and met the challenges head-on.

Mark K

Good afternoon, I’m here today with Bruce Rundberg, who is Januarys’ Hometown Hero award recipient. As the recipient He’ll be receiving items from Freedomsystem.org as a thank you for His service from us. Also, He’ll be a guest at our annual dinner this May 18th, 2024, featuring Cpt. Chad Flemming.

Mark K

Bruce, if you would, tell me a little bit about yourself, background history, current work.

Bruce R

I’m 37 from Hobart IN that’s where I grew up at. Graduated from River Forest High School. I currently work at Adams and Westlake. Been here for 10 years now working in manufacturing.

Mark K

So, what branch of service did you choose?

Bruce R

Army National Guard.

Mark K

Were there any other branches you considered before the army?

Bruce R

I’d say Marine Corps, active army.

Mark K

Did you have any family that was in the military?

Bruce R

I had a grandfather that was in Vietnam with the army.

Mark K

What were some of the motivating factors that led you to seek that life?

Bruce R

I wanted to be challenged. I really wasn’t afraid of much. And it just seemed exciting to do. You get to go to different places, get shoot different weapons, it just seemed fun.

Mark K

Did you have any expectations going in?

Bruce R

I knew it was going to suck. You’re going to get your body beat up and pushed, but that’s what you signed up for.

Mark K

Was there an experience in basic training that really sticks with you?

Bruce R

Not really. It was just. It was good overall.

Mark K

Did you have a best or worst moment you’d care to share from basic?

Bruce R

Nothing special about basic if I’m being honest. I mean good drill sergeants, but them being good doesn’t really mean that it’s bad. They were just they were hard on you and it made you better for it.

Mark K

How long did you serve?

Bruce R

I put 13 years in.

Mark K

In those 13 years, what rank did you attain?

Bruce R

I hit E5, Sergeant.

Mark K

Were you ever deployed?

Bruce R

Yes, one-time 07/08 in Baghdad, Iraq.

Mark K

So, take me through a typical day in your time of service.

Bruce R

Can you be more specific?

Mark K

It can be anything, you know, from when you’re deployed or when you’re at home.

Bruce R

Oh well, the days were easy. You just need. Workout go on your mission and repeat, and it was simple. Fun, not fun, but exciting because there’s a lot on the line.

Mark K

What about a day while you’re at home?

Bruce R

If you weren’t in the field like Garrison time, it was just certifications that needed to be done making sure your soldiers were doing what they needed to do and getting their stuff done as well. Maintaining your PT. or in the field, depending on what the mission was. I spent a lot of time in Recon Platoon, so most of my time was a scout. So, a lot of stalking through the woods, creeping around and trying not to get caught and find the enemy and report them in.

Mark K

During your time and time of service, are there any aspects of that life you’re glad to have experienced? Anything that sticks out?

Bruce R

All of it, I’d say. Probably the most enjoyable thing overall was probably doing airborne. It was just fun to get that jump out of airplanes.

Mark K

Are there things you miss about that life?

Bruce R

Yeah, the camaraderie with your team was just the best. You guys are all potentially going to face certain death and everyone’s looking out for everybody and it’s just. The friendships made are just deep because of that.

Mark K

Describe the acclimation process back to civilian life.

Bruce R

It’s a little weird. I mean if you’re talking about coming back from deployment where you’re going from looking for bombs everywhere, in the road and in every little nook and cranny when you’re out and about to just regular civilian life. Driving around and trying not to look for that stuff. It was kind of weird, and probably took a little bit, but if you know what to expect going there and coming back, it’s pretty manageable and transitioning and separating yourself from overseas to here.

Mark K

So, you’re saying from heightened senses awareness, to calm down, I don’t have to be.

Bruce R

I don’t think that will go away. That’s always there. It’s just more, you manage how high you’re allowing it to be turned up at the time, but it’s kind of always there with you forever. But again, just being able to separate that and then turning the dial down a little bit so you can enjoy certain aspects of life.

Mark K

How has your service impacted your view of the world?

Bruce R

You get a better appreciation for this country when you go overseas to many different places, and you see how those people live. Poor over here. It isn’t poor in a lot of the places over in Europe or Asia. I think a lot of people don’t experience that. So, you take what you have here for granted.

Mark K

Looking back overall, are you glad that you made the choice to serve?

Bruce R

Oh, for sure, I’d do it all over again in a heartbeat.

Mark K

Is there any advice you’d give to someone seeking to join?

Bruce R

Know what MOS you’re looking into, and then what the outcomes are to that after you’re getting out because you eventually will get out and transition into a civilian life. So, you want to ideally, have something that’s going to benefit where you want to be in the civilian world eventually. And if not, just pick the thing you’re really going to enjoy. Mine was the infantry.

Mark K

Are there any final words or thoughts you’d like to end on?

Bruce R

I’m glad that I served because I wanted to. I had a good time and made a lot of good friends there. That was it.

Mark K

Well, thank you for your time. I Appreciate it.

Bruce R

Thank you.

  • Military Service: The individual must have served in one of the branches of the military, including Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, or Coast Guard.
  • Honorable Discharge: The veteran should have received an honorable discharge from their military service.
  • Community Connection: The veteran should have a strong connection to the hometown or local community that they’ve served, demonstrating their commitment to both their country and their community.
  • Demonstrated Leadership:  Whether during their military service or post-retirement, the veteran should have shown leadership qualities that positively impacted others around them.
  • Sacrifice and Dedication: Recognition is given to those who have made significant sacrifices for their country, showing dedication and loyalty to the principles of freedom and democracy.
  • Exemplary Conduct: The veteran should have maintained a high level of integrity and conduct throughout their military service and civilian life.
  • Awards and Decorations: While not necessary, any awards, medals, or commendations received for acts of valor or exceptional service can further highlight their heroism.
  • Contributions Post-Service: Any contributions the veteran has made to the community after their military service, such as volunteering, mentoring, or advocacy, can demonstrate their ongoing dedication to making a positive impact.
  • Story and Testimonials: A compelling narrative of the veteran’s military service journey and the impact they’ve had on their community, along with testimonials from peers, colleagues, or community members, can enrich their hero profile.
  • Positive Role Model: The veteran should serve as a role model, inspiring others through their actions and values.

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    Author

    Mark Kauffman

    Comments

    1 Comment

    1. Goose

      Great interview with Bruce Rundberg! Great to hear the background…stories…and the person inside the soldier..

      Goose

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