Tradition of service

veteran’s corner

Tom Krabbenhoft

Being from a family that has a strong military tradition I love writing about families that are deep into serving this country and that is what we have this week.

Brad Schenck and HIS twin brother Ben, twin great uncles that served in the USMC in WW2. 

With such a strong tradition of service the twins upon graduating from Moorhead in 2000 enlisted in the USMC. They went under the buddy system which means they went to basic training together. They were the 2nd and 3rd squad leaders throughout basic. Twins as squad leaders? The jokes and harassment that come from that self-generate.

If you’re following along that is three sets of twins in this family that have served. Truly incredible!

Brad trained as a MP, Ben as an armorer. They both deployed in 2003 backfilling positions on the east coast. The brothers fulfilled their 6 year commitment to the Marine Corps reserve. Ben got out. Brad enlisted into the ND Air Guard retiring in 2016.

Brad and Ben continued to serve their communities. Ben earned a degree in firefighting and is a Captain in the St. Paul fire department. Brad earned a degree in law enforcement and he was employed with the Moorhead police department in 2005. There he served on the Red River SWAT team for ten years, seven as a sniper.

Sadly Brads dedicated life to service and community was cut short. He was diagnosed with brain cancer.  He credits others to his “putting up a good fight.” After a successful two year fight he returned to the MPD, and served to the best of his abilities for three more years. About a year ago at the end of a shift Brad suffered a seizure. The cancer had returned.

Currently Brad is undergoing chemotherapy at the Fargo VA. He praises his treatment there as “amazing and second to none.” Brad wanted a shout out to his “wife, kids, family and friends” for their support as he continues to battle cancer. It’s the least we can do.

Brad will continue to stand tall in this fight, as he has stood for something most of his life. A special thanks to Brad, Ben and the rest of the family.

Remember Veterans this Veterans Day and all others. Also remember to cherish our all-volunteer force.

“The willingness with which our young people are likely to serve in any war, no matter how justified, shall be directly proportional to how they perceive the Veterans of earlier wars were treated and appreciated by their nation.” — President George Washington


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