FYI-This story didn’t make The Red Circle.

I was a new guy on probation at SEAL Team 3 (it’s different now, you get your Trident after SEAL Qualification Training) and serving in a support role.  Need a boat driver for a platoon training dive? “Hey new guy, get over here..”. Need another bus driver to haul guys to and from a run out in town? “New guy, get over here…”

So off to the Naval Special Warfare motor pool to find out how to get my 36 PAX (passenger) bus license.

First let me tell you that most motor pool operators cringe when checking out vehicles to Spec Ops types. They have checked out too many vehicles only to have them returned with no tread, dents and smoke coming from the hood.  We tend to be very hard on vehicles, especially after returning from a race or offensive driving course.  Drive it like it’s stolen.

The guy behind the counter took one look at my SEAL Team 3 PT shorts and was instantly on guard. “I need a 36 PAX drivers exam I said.” The guy didn’t say much, he grunted something about SEALs fucking up a new truck last week, and handed me a thick stack of papers. “Have someone who’s licensed sign off this qualification package and call us when you’re ready to test”, he said.

I took the paperwork back and heard the senior guys on the upper deck of SEAL Team 3 say, “Webb, get that damn license because we’re out of drivers for next Friday’s PT run, don’t fuck around. Hear me?, said half ass Mac. Mac had literally lost half his ass to a land mine in Vietnam. The “new guys” knew his name but dared not call him by it or end up in a world of hurt, or worse.

It was Friday, and I had one week to sign off a stack of paperwork and take my bus test. Only one thing to do I thought, pencil whip this qualification sheet and take that test sooner than later.

After completing my qual sheet with the help of my fellow new guy’s handwriting, I called the vehicle depot the following Monday and said I would like to test for my 36 PAX bus drivers license. The guy that answered said he had an open slot later that afternoon. “Yes! I thought to myself.” Here we go.