HEBRON, Ky. - James Blau, 19, and his best friend Cody Mullen, 18, boarded a plane Tuesday that would take them to Oklahoma. That is where they will become soldiers.
"I was shocked actually," said James' dad Steve Blau. "It was like I was hit in the the gut actually. I didn't know what to think about it."
That's the reaction Steve had when found his son enlisted. While he was nervous about Steve leaving, he proudly spoke about his son's vocational choice.
"He's really sticking up for the world and sticking up for himself," said Steve. "[He's] showing he was brought up right."
The irony was uncanny for Steve. The day James was flying to boot camp was the 11th anniversary of the most deadly terrorist attack on United States soil.
"Leaving on this day, I was up in the air about it," he said.
James said he was looking forward to gaining skills, the GI Bill benefit, and the traveling, but those were small compared to his big picture.
"I kind of felt like I had a purpose to do something," said James.
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A veteran from Fort Thomas was one of at least 15 people killed in a suicide car bombing in the Afghan capital of Kabul Thursday.