March 1, 2021

Episode 45: Michael Rutledge


Michael enlisted in the Navy as a Naval Aircrewman and Helicopter Rescue Swimmer. After Basic Training, his first assignment was Guam, and aside from deploying in support of resupply operations, he found the monotony taxing. He volunteered for Basic Underwater Demolition / SEAL Training, and was accepted. After SEAL school, he was assigned to SEAL Team One, and completed several deployments in the Southeast Asia region. After a stint as a SEAL Advanced Training Instructor, he was accepted into the Army Warrant Officer Program and Flight School. Finishing first in his flight school class, he applied for, and was accepted into, the 2nd Battalion of the 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment (SOAR), the Night Stalkers, at Fort Campbell, Kentucky. After three years at Fort Campbell, he moved to Joint Base Lewis-McChord when the 4th Battalion of the 160th was activated. In thirteen years in the 160th SOAR, he completed sixteen deployments, flying variations of the MH-47. After leaving the 160th SOAR, he was assigned as the commander of the 2nd Aviation Detachment at West Point, flying the UH-72 Lakota. This is one of only two commands open to Aviation Warrant Officers in the Army. After retirement from the military Michael stays busy as an Agriculture Aviator, Fire pilot, and working for Thrush Aircraft.

INTRO and OUTRO music written,performed, and provided by the band Rattle Root. Check them out below.

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