Meet Roberta (Robin) Beach Jacobson
“The emotional demands are as difficult as the physical ones.”
Roberta (Robin) Beach Jacobson, 59, has one grown son. She served as a construction surveyor for seven years.
Hometown: Lake in the Hills, Illinois
Where did you serve? Mostly in Germany
What’s the hardest part? The physical activity and training!
What do you love most about it? I joined after seeing a television ad about assignments in Europe. So travel is my number one reason, but also meeting and working with so many fascinating people was rewarding. I worked for federal civil service for some nine years after leaving the military, so still got to experience the same sort of coworkers.
How does your family feel about it? They were surprised when I wanted to enlist. My parents tried to talk me out of it, but were fine with it once I finished basic and seemed to be doing well.
What’s it like being a female service member? Well, being a woman is hard in many aspects. It got easier the longer I was in the Army!
What are some things you take with you, or do, to feel “at home” when you’re so far away from home? My own sheets and blankets and comfortable slippers!
Your biggest fear? Did I make the right decision by not staying the full 20 years until retirement? Will I regret it and feel shortchanged when my time comes for my social security?
What do you want most out of life? A tranquil, rural life in a safe place with lots of pets!
What’s something you wish all Americans knew about our troops? The work hours are long and you’re on your feet endlessly. The duties are stressful and you’re outside in all sorts of weather. The emotional demands are as difficult as the physical ones. It’s not like summer camp!