‘Augusta In Army Boots’ Gives Civilians Real-Life Military Experience

Julie Parise Gives Army Lifestyle A Try

AUGUSTA, Ga. — Crawling through the mud is not how most people want to spend a weekday afternoon — but that’s just what several local residents did at Fort Gordon recently. Six people, including WJBF’s Julie Parise, spent 28 hours at the Army post for “Augusta In Army Boots,” a real-life military boot camp experience.

During the 28-hour period, participants wear the uniform, eat MREs, and fire weapons, get vehicle rollover training and learn fire-team formations –- but it’s not just for fun. Augusta In Army Boots teaches civilians about the sacrifices soldiers make, and how hard the lifestyle can be.

“We’re soldiers, we have a story, we are dedicated to things that we do,” said Sgt. First Class James Millwood, the leader of this year’s program. “The Army is a lifestyle.”

It also helps the post build new relationships across the CSRA.

“It’s that community relationship that has sustained Fort Gordon for so long,” Millwood said.

“It left me with bruises, some sore muscles, and an entirely new appreciation for the military,” Julie said after completing the program.

“The big takeaway for me was learning about the sacrifices the soldiers make,” she said.

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