The Family That Serves Together, Stays Together

It was a rare treat for Tim and Janet Hubbard, Berger, to have all seven of their children home for a weekend last month to attend a cousin’s wedding. Most days, the seven are spread out across the country — from California to Maryland, and the youngest now in Italy with the U.S. Navy.

The Hubbards have gotten used to not seeing all of their children in the same room for very long ever since their oldest son, Austin, joined the Navy straight out of high school.

After that, one by one the Hubbards’ other children followed suit, with all but the second youngest enlisting in the Navy — and right now he’s seriously considering whether or not to join. 300×240 image ad The last time the children were all together before this visit was for another cousin’s wedding and before that, they shared an hour or so together on a New Year’s holiday, said Janet Hubbard.

The Hubbards aren’t sure what the record is for the number of siblings serving in the military, but six certainly puts them in limited company, especially outside of the draft and war years.

Janet Hubbard laughs when she thinks how her oldest son, Austin, started the family trend. When he was a sophomore at Hermann High School, he was trying to score the lowest he could on the ASVAB or or Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery test because he knew he did not want to serve in the military and didn’t think his score would matter.

“I tried to answer every question wrong and ended up scoring in the bottom 1 percent,” said Austin.

In fact, he got every answer wrong, said Janet Hubbard. Which caught the recruiter’s attention.

Turns out, someone who doesn’t know any better and just guesses answers wildly ends up getting around 9 percent correct, she explained.

“The recruiter recognized that Austin had to know what the right answer was to avoid it,” said Janet. “His plan backfired.”

Regardless, Austin insisted he still wasn’t interested in joining the military, but halfway through his senior year, the recruiters had him retested, and Austin scored in the top 3 percent in the country.

“The next day they had signed him up,” Janet said, recalling how mad she was initially.

But when she learned he was going to be a “nuke” or someone who works on nuclear powered ships in the Navy, she knew it was all for the best.

A “nuke” is a term used to describe any job in the Navy that has specifications in the nuclear field, according to the U.S. Navy website, .“Nukes make up both the enlisted and officer force. Enlisted nuke jobs include electronic technicians (ET), electrician’s mates (EM) and machinist’s mates (MM).“Sailors with these qualifications and ratings are employed onboard nuclear powered ships to maintain the control subsystems, the machinery and the piping in nuclear reactors. Some nuclear MMs receive additional specialization in health, physics and maintaining reactor chemistry.”“The Navy needs those nukes, and they have to be smart,” said Janet. “Very few people actually […]

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