JOHNSON CITY, Tenn (WJHL) — For many veterans, only one spouse in the family knows what it’s like to wear a uniform.
That’s not the case for a Tri-Cities couple, both of whom are Navy Veterans.
Long before she met her husband, Michael, Becky Berry said she met a Navy recruiter while on a shopping trip with her mom in 1973.
“I was actually in the Fort Henry Mall one day with my mother walking around and the recruiters were out there,” Berry said.
That was the beginning of a nearly 23-year career in the United States Navy. During posts in Washington DC, Los Angeles, Norfolk and Hawaii and a deployment to the Persian Gulf in 1991, Berry rose through the ranks in Navy administrative earning high-level security clearances that gave her a front-row seat to history as it happened.
“The intelligence would come from all parts of the world, and the intelligence office would put that together and that’s what would go to the White House and the Department of Defense and the Secretary of the Navy,” Berry said. “I thought it was pretty exciting.”
Also exciting: being in the U.S. Navy while being married to someone in the Navy. Michael and Becky Berry were linked by love and their Naval service.
“You kind of have the same mindset with the discipline every day and you have a lot more in common,” she said.
But even after more than two decades of service in which she achieved the rank of Senior Chief Petty Officer, Berry still encounters surprise when people find out she’s a Navy veteran.
“I don’t think it’s thought of as much, especially in the Tri-Cities area,” Berry said. “People are surprised that I served.”
Regardless, she’s proud of her service, and she’s grateful to be home.