Name: Jimmy T. Vu
Rank: Senior Airman
Unit: 175th MXS/Propulsion Element
Job Description: Propulsion Journeyman
Fulltime job: Student at the University of Maryland
Hometown: Hagerstown, MD
Joined the MDANG: 12/19/12
Total Service years: 4 years
Favorite Movie: The Pursuit of Happiness
Favorite food: Pasta
Favorite Sports Team: Atlanta Falcons
Tell us your brief life story?
My parents immigrated to the United States from Vietnam when I was a baby. I’ve spent most of my life in Hagerstown, MD where I graduated from Williamsport High School. I obtained an Associate of Science degree in Engineering, Physics, and Mathematics from Hagerstown Community College then transferred to the University of Maryland. I am currently studying Bioengineering. I hope to attend medical school one day and continue to serve the health and welfare of the community.
Tell us about your military career?
When I was in the fourth grade, I began to have a fascination with military aircraft and wanted to become a pilot. Joining the military was one of my goals but I wanted to earn a degree first. After speaking with a recruiter, I learned that I was able to do both concurrently. When joining the guard, I wanted to work in the 175th Maintenance Squadron engine shop because of my interest in internal combustion engines. It has been a great experience being here. It is possible in the near future that I may decide to commission as an officer.
What brought you to the MDANG? How have you enjoyed your time here?
Initially, I was talking to a recruiter at the West Virginia Air National Guard about opportunities the guard had to offer. This conversation was due to the fear of shouldering the financial burden of college on my own. Upon learning that ANG education assistance was only specific to schools within the state, I reached out to a recruiter in the Maryland Air National Guard. Throughout my time here, I can honestly say that it is with great honor to be a part of a group of people that not only take care of each other, but are also the hardest working people I know. Despite coming in part-time, there is always something new for me to experience.
What is your favorite Air Force or military memory or story?
My favorite memory was during my on-the-job training after graduating from technical school. It was my first time out on the flight line and I was assigned a job to replace an oil and scavenge pump on an A-10. I found out later that the pilot of that aircraft was Brig. Gen. Scott Kelly, who was the wing commander at the time. After the replacement, it was exhilarating to see the engine fire up and the aircraft fly without a hitch.
What is your proudest moment?
I made a goal to be an honor graduate from Air Force Basic Military Training, but unfortunately, I missed the required score on the final by one point. It was disappointing, but I made a new goal of graduating technical school at the top of my class. Upon finishing the course, I graduated with 100 percent and received the Ace Award as top graduate.
What are you passionate about?
There are countless people that have limited opportunities for various reasons. Some are in situations that force them to neglect their health in order to be able to provide for their families. The health of these individuals should be a priority. They should be able to spend a lifetime making memories with their families rather than have a life of complications. I want to be able to make a difference in their lives because they mean something to someone.