#9 Part Two, Why I joined the Navy

I was overjoyed! I’d just found out that Judy was pregnant and was so happy!

She was mad, disgusted and didn’t want the baby. She was wanting to get rid of it. I was shocked and wouldn’t have any part of this.

I told my parents and they decided that we needed to go to El Paso to see her in person. I agreed so we went down that same weekend.

To say she was happy to see me wasn’t the case. Like I said she was angry, VERY angry. I couldn’t blame her but it was both of our faults. We were careless and now we had a decision to make. We could move on with our lives or end a life.

She said she hated me. She said ugly things. I took it all. I was crying she was crying. I was naive to the fact of why she didn’t want to have this child. Why she didn’t want to be with me.

Seeing it now it was because we we young. We’d only been going out for six months and in that it was a long distance relationship from the very start. I should have known it wasn’t going to work out and left it at that.

But now that wasn’t an option since a life was on the line. I told her what I wanted to do with my life and told her I was joining the Navy. There I could provide for the baby and her IF she wanted to get married. More ugly things were said by her and again I took it all. I again told her we could be married have a life and provide a stable environment for our new family if she wanted that OR I would go on my way and provide for just the baby.

So she decided and we did get married. I joined the Navy. I went to San Diego for Boot on May 10th, 1987. On June 28th Veronica Diane Tessler was born!! I was so happy! I graduated a week later and reported to Damage Control A school and graduated second in my class. I attacked my school work for my family. I was going to prove to Judy that I was dedicated to our new family and that I would be a good father.

Even though my marriage to Judy didn’t work out it happened for a reason. She couldn’t handle the military and I have now accepted that. She wasn’t met to be away from her family. God had other plans.

I have two wonderful daughters and would never give up the years I had. I wouldn’t change a thing. I learned a lot from being married and have many many life lessons from that first marriage.

All I can say is BE SMART!! I was not. We were not. We were kids and didn’t see that. God has a way of showing and forcing people to grow up. That is what God showed me in my first marriage.

How has God forced you to grow up?SteveVeronicaSteph1996


#8 Why I joined the Navy

I worked for a company in Albuquerque named Rainbow Air. Rainbow Air was a company that sold air purification systems. Air purification system that doubled as a what come people would call a vacuum. The “Rainbow”.

I had to go to peoples homes demonstrate this equipment basically cleaner house and try to sell them $1000 vacuum. This was right after high school around 1985 so a thousand dollars for a vacuum back then was a lot of money.

This kind of job was new to me because I’ve never sold anything before. But it was fun because they taught me a huge demonstration and I really liked it. I would stand up in peoples homes be all nice and quiet and then just go nuts!

The owner of the company was skeptical of hiring me at first, but as soon as he saw me do the demonstration he knew I could do it. The fact that I was so quiet and reserved while learning this and then once I did my demonstration I would go crazy really inspired him and me. He was very enthusiastic and always wanted a sale I on the other hand would always go look at the consumer as not being able to afford it.

I believed in the product but the price was way too high for what I found out later on. They bought them for $400-$700 that’s how we were able to knock $300 off the price of somebody couldn’t afford it. My other issue was finding people to sell it to I had to go totally off referrals and a lot of people didn’t like getting other peoples names out to have some crazy guy coming to her house and do a demonstration jump all over the carpet to sell them a thousand dollars vacuum.

But while I was there I won to trip to Mazatlan Mexico. We had to drive to El Paso Texas meet up with another group of people that work at the same company in a different state and we drove to Juarez Mexico. While I was there I met someone.

Her name was Judy and she turned out to be my first wife. The relationship I believe was doomed from the start to begin with. She lived in a different state from me and it was a long distance relationship and we hardly ever saw each other so when she got pregnant to our own faults I wanted to marry her to do the right thing.

My parents offered to drive me to El Paso to talk with her to find out what the situation was at that time and she told me she didn’t want to have the baby which broke my heart because I loved her and I loved the baby inside of her.

So that’s why I joined the Navy to prove to her that I wanted to get a job and be able to take care of her and the baby. So in essence I joined Navy to get medical insurance to provide for who is now Veronica and to do my dream job which was to be a firefighter and to get a trade out of the Navy and become a civilian firefighter.

So once I heard that she was pregnant I went to a Navy recruiter I got the job I wanted and had to fly out to San Diego California for Boot Camp this all happened within six months eventually we I got married in April and I flew to Boot Camp in May and Judy had Veronica on June 28, 1987.

The ironic part of the story is that when we were flying back to Juarez our group got off the plane and the plane continued to California. That plane crashed on the way. Everyone died.

God has a plan. A plan for everyone.

#7 My love for Fire Trucks!


As long as I can remember I’ve loved fire trucks from the time I could run outside my house to my chain-link fence and watch some pass my house I was hooked. We lived on a major street and the firehouse was right around the corner.

As a child I could hear a siren from very far away. I could hear firetrucks leave the fire station and know within minutes if they were turning left to come up our street. Then I would sprint out of our house as fast as I could to watch them pass by. 

As I got a little older I can usually tell anybody what type of firetruck was going to pass by our house. I can remember our family having company and I would hear a fire truck and storm through the living room while everybody was watching and all my parents would say is there’s a fire truck on the way and sure enough within a couple seconds they would hear what was coming and know that I was right.

From that time on my goal was to be a become a firefighter. I just didn’t know how to do it. To this day I’m still mesmerized and love fire trucks. At a young age when we were playing inside the house and if I heard a firetruck I’d run outside to see it.

When we were outside I would turn and look in the direction it was coming from usually tell where they were. Even my friend would comment that someday he’s got to be a firefighter and my dream came true the day I joined the Navy.

My parents would always take me to see a fire truck. The state fair would always come to Albuquerque in September and there is usually a huge display of our trucks there.

When I was young I would always be on the lookout for a TV show with firetrucks in it and they were few and far between until one night one night my mother surprised me! I was getting ready for bed and she called me into the living room, my father was on a hunting trip and so she let me stay up late to watch “Emergency”!  I was hooked I loved that show and even though it was on a little bit later than my bedtime my mother would always let me watch it to this day I often still watch some of the reruns.

I believed it was so realistic and from my little knowledge of firefighting I thought it was. Looking back from what I know now it was somewhat of a more realistic show about firefighting. I would also watch various police shows and some of them even incorporated the show “Emergency” in with it.

But my love was always to become a firefighter. The best though was when a fire truck would pass by my house and if they turned down our street or across the street I would jump on my bike and follow them as fast as I could. And if we were in the car and one passed by us I would often ask my parents if we could follow it. I never knew it was illegal but my parents usually did it anyway.  I love the fact that they inspired me to pursue my dreams to become a firefighter. I’m still amazed that I was able to do that for twenty years in the Navy. I would still love to be a firefighter but due to a back injury in the Navy that’s no longer a dream.

#5 Dedication




I want to dedicate this book to my kids I love you all with all my heart none more and none less I love you all equally!!

It’s also devoted to my wife who I love very much and has been with me through thick and thin and I would not have made it without you. You have believed in me from the start and have given me positive outlook it takes to take something like this on.

Also to my parents who love!!  I thank God every day you had me!  Also to my brothers and sisters you were friends, playmates and companions without you all I would cease to live.

To my great-grandparents and grandparents if you wouldn’t have had my parents I would not be here I want to thank you for the way you raised them as children I would not be the person I am today if you would have raised them differently.  I watched you all of the time and modeled my work ethic after you and the way you instilled that in my parents.

My aunts and uncles who are always there for me and who are wonderful! When you would visit me we always had fun. We had great conversation and I love you all.

To my cousins the brothers and sisters of my parents siblings you guys are wonderful I love you too even though we don’t see even though we didn’t see each other very much when we did we had fun.

To all the acquaintances and friends I’ve made throughout the years. All of you have touched me in one way or another life wise. All of you have been great friends to work for.

I have to explain why I’m writing this book. I’ve always wanted to write a book about my life to let others know how I lived it.

This is not a vindictive book or a book to explain how I should’ve lived its just to let my children and anyone else that wants to read it know what it was like from my eyes to live my life.  Now just like every story there’s always two sides to a story you can tell five people same thing in all the all have a different result this book is from my eyes.

I lived a very happy positive life. Sure I had bad days and good days but mostly good.  As you’ll see with my dad.  My dad early on was very disciplined with me and he wasn’t the friendliest.  He was my parent and he treated me that way later on he became my friend and I think you’ll see that.

This book is to account for most of the things that I can remember in my life. Since I was in the Navy for most of your lives you were not with me so what I remember is limited.