George Aquiningoc

George Aquiningoc Receives Valorous Unit and Good Conduct Medals

After years of service with the Army, decorated Iraq War veteran George Aquiningoc has finally been recognized for his accomplishments. He was presented with a Valorous Unit Award, Iraq Campaign Medal with two bronze service stars and Good Conduct Medal.

At age 21, Aquiningoc was deployed to Iraq where he served for six months and 22 days. Unfortunately, his discharge paperwork did not reflect this time in service.

Early Life and Education

Early years in a child’s life have an immense effect on their physical and mental wellbeing, social and emotional development, as well as learning capacity. The brain develops rapidly during these first eight years, so the experiences and environments children encounter during this period will shape their subsequent abilities, behaviors and health outcomes.

UNESCO believes that investing in early childhood care and education that is inclusive, holistic, and respectful of all is one of the most significant steps a country can make to promote sustainable development. It serves as the foundation for children’s educational achievement, economic productivity, responsible citizenship, as well as lifelong health.

At National, students in the BAECE program complete approximately five hours of field experience for every class they take. This gives them valuable hands-on experience teaching in a classroom and helps build their confidence and capabilities as educators.

Professional Career

Aquiningoc is a decorated Army veteran who served in one of the most significant battles of the Iraq War. Upon returning home, he believed his post-military life would be easy: find work at Bremerton Shipyard and live in relative tranquility. However, life took an unexpected turn as Aquinongoc experienced intense combat while serving his country.

However, Aquiningoc soon discovered life is far more complicated than anticipated. Aside from the usual red tape and bureaucracy, he faced numerous other difficulties, including a military discharge which claimed he never served overseas, depression, bipolar disorder, marijuana use to deal with symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder which ultimately lead to his less-than-honorable discharge in 2005. Despite these setbacks, Aquiningoc remains an active member of Kitsap County community and participates in his local VFW post.

Achievements and Honors

In 2003, he volunteered to join the Army and serve two tours of duty in Iraq. Upon his return home, however, he felt lonely and disconnected from civilian society.

He decided to make amends with his former peers by volunteering as a Service Officer for VFW Post 2669 in Port Orchard, Washington. His military experience allows him to better relate to veterans in their communities, helping to bridge the gap between them and civilians alike.

He received six new awards when he filed an appeal with the Army Board for Correction of Military Records in September 2011 in recognition of his bravery during combat during his tour of duty. These included a Valorous Unit Award, Meritorious Unit Commendation, two bronze service stars and the Army’s Good Conduct Medal.

Personal Life

Aquiningoc left the Army after returning home from Iraq with post-traumatic stress disorder. As he struggled to cope, he started smoking marijuana in an effort to relax. Ultimately, in 2005, Aquiningoc was discharged with less than honorable discharge.

However, he refused to give up and took his case all the way up the ladder of appeal within the Army: the Board for Correction of Military Records.

Ultimately, the board decided to award him six new medals for his heroism. Additionally, he received the Army Commendation Medal for Valor.

He now resides in Kitsap County and works at Bremerton Shipyard. Additionally, he volunteers his time for VFW Post 2669 – a local chapter of Veterans of Foreign Wars – as well as other organizations such as Kitsap County Community Resource Center and Salvation Army.

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