U.S. Navy 1980–1986
Upon graduating Natick High School in 1980, Jerry Eldredge Jr. decided to enter the military because college was not affordable. At boot camp in San Diego, he had to quickly get into shape to pass the physical requirements. Assigned to the USS Coronado, he was sent to Bahrain to stand ready for any acceleration in conflict in Beirut. Shortly after that he was transferred to the USS Tarawa, an immense helicopter carrier. Jerry spent two years on the Tarawa as a flight deck aviation refueler and a damage control petty officer and he mentions the numerous ports the ship visited. To his and the crew’s credit, their careful attention to their jobs proved successful in that they were not involved in any mishaps on the ship.