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Old 04-12-2015, 11:18 PM
 
Location: Saint Johns, FL
1,193 posts, read 943,629 times
Reputation: 1267

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This was brought up in another thread, and didn't want to de-rail it, but I bet a bunch of us sweated out the draft lottery. In my case I was born in 1951 and was in the 2nd lottery in 1970. My birthday came up #276.

Here's a web site you can find them

https://www.sss.gov/lotter1.htm

My buddies and I were all middle class, suburban guys that ranged from pretty straight (me) to semi-hippies. Ironically all the avowed ant-military, anti-Vietnam guys got low numbers and the guys like me got good numbers.

None of them actually got drafted or went to Canada, so I guess their student deferments let them delay things long enough so that the draft ended before they got called (July 1, 1973).

In Year one, the highest number drafted was 195. In subsequent years it went as high as 215.

Before the lottery, the Navy, and especially the Air Force had long waiting lists to get in as they were considered safer.

After the draft with half the population safe from being drafted, the waiting lists disappeared.

In the end... for me......a buddy of mine joined the Air Force. I came home from an out of city college to live at home and go to local school. Living at home after being on my own now drove me crazy. So when summer came, and my buddy told me how easy the Air Force was.... I decided to join the Air Force on Aug 21st 1971 after one last summer of youth.....

But.... it was just to get out of the house, get married and figure out what I want to do with my life. But it's 4 years.... 4 long years.. I figured I could do that 4 years and by then I'll be ready for my actual life to begin. If I could just get through 4 years...........




Tom Mills
USAF retired
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Old 04-12-2015, 11:23 PM
 
4,069 posts, read 1,560,196 times
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#333 (8/30/46)
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Old 04-13-2015, 02:38 AM
 
Location: Pennsylvania
16,361 posts, read 10,348,905 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Newporttom View Post
This was brought up in another thread, and didn't want to de-rail it, but I bet a bunch of us sweated out the draft lottery. In my case I was born in 1951 and was in the 2nd lottery in 1970. My birthday came up #276.

Here's a web site you can find them

https://www.sss.gov/lotter1.htm

My buddies and I were all middle class, suburban guys that ranged from pretty straight (me) to semi-hippies. Ironically all the avowed ant-military, anti-Vietnam guys got low numbers and the guys like me got good numbers.

None of them actually got drafted or went to Canada, so I guess their student deferments let them delay things long enough so that the draft ended before they got called (July 1, 1973).

In Year one, the highest number drafted was 195. In subsequent years it went as high as 215.

Before the lottery, the Navy, and especially the Air Force had long waiting lists to get in as they were considered safer.

After the draft with half the population safe from being drafted, the waiting lists disappeared.

In the end... for me......a buddy of mine joined the Air Force. I came home from an out of city college to live at home and go to local school. Living at home after being on my own now drove me crazy. So when summer came, and my buddy told me how easy the Air Force was.... I decided to join the Air Force on Aug 21st 1971 after one last summer of youth.....

But.... it was just to get out of the house, get married and figure out what I want to do with my life. But it's 4 years.... 4 long years.. I figured I could do that 4 years and by then I'll be ready for my actual life to begin. If I could just get through 4 years...........




Tom Mills
USAF retired
I guess you got through more than that. Has your real life started yet?

Thanks for sharing those memories. Being female, the draft lottery didn't diretly affect me. But I knew a lot of guys who were sweating it out.
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Old 04-13-2015, 06:36 AM
 
Location: Saint Johns, FL
1,193 posts, read 943,629 times
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Retired for real on 31 March. It started then....
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Old 04-13-2015, 08:19 AM
 
Location: East of Seattle since 1992, originally from SF Bay Area
29,829 posts, read 54,503,450 times
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I had a 2S while in college the first two years, then came the lottery. I was #88, which was a concern, but they only got to
the 60s that year,

My older brother got #18, and was called for a physical. He had asthma, and though it didn't really bother him much, he parked several blocks from the location of the physical and ran there, causing himself to be wheezing, which got him a 4F.

I remember in my junior year of college when there was a war protest at our campus, and the National Guard was on the roof of our buildings with rifles.
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Old 04-13-2015, 08:25 AM
JRR
 
Location: Middle Tennessee
3,679 posts, read 2,228,572 times
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I remember those days. I enlisted in the Coast Guard right after I turned 18 in August 1967. Had bunches of college graduates chipping paint on the ship I was on. There were a lot of people trying to get into the Coast Guard at that time.
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Old 04-13-2015, 08:27 AM
 
Location: Western Colorado
11,096 posts, read 12,481,863 times
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161. The only lottery I ever won. A friend watching that with me was #17, after he was drafted he was stationed in Germany until his discharge. He considered himself pretty darn lucky. I remained 1-A and guess I still am. Still have my draft card. At 63 I hope I'm never drafted.
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Old 04-13-2015, 08:44 AM
 
7,966 posts, read 9,718,976 times
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My father was born on Sept 14th, 1950. Yes, that was #1 in the first lottery.


He had a student deferment, but did join ROTC and was in the reserves for 20 years. He never went to Viet Nam, but was activated for Desert Shield and retired when they were going to reactivate him for Bosnia.
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Old 04-13-2015, 09:03 AM
 
950 posts, read 715,339 times
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Vietnam started in the early 60's an d the lottery system wasn't used until Jan of 1970.

Thus, there most likely were far more draftees during the Vietnam era who were pre-lottery and they just called up everyone and weeded out via physicals or deferments who would not get inducted.

I joked that my draft physical was close to resembling my high school re-union of males only.
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Old 04-13-2015, 09:08 AM
 
Location: WA
5,396 posts, read 21,404,537 times
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It was a difficult time for me... before the lottery you registered at 18 and if you could not manage a deferment you were drafted at 19.

I was not able to attend school, had no qualifications, colorblind, not eligible to enlist for anything but combat, not interested in going to Viet Nam for an action I could not understand, and not interested in moving to Canada. Dumb luck just a month before I was inducted I was involved in a bad motorcycle accident that took me over a year to fully recover from. My draft classification went from 1A to 1Y and before they inducted me I became a father so my classification changed to 3A so I was not inducted.

As much as serving your country makes sense, participating in military actions brought on by questionable foreign policy and politics is very difficult. I am sure I would face the issues differently with my experience and judgment of today but at 18 it is hard to grasp what is happening to your life.
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