Incline High, UNR graduate returns from duty in Iraq
INCLINE VILLAGE – For Sgt. Adam Fetterly, the decision to join the U.S. Marine Corps wasn’t just a calling, it was genetic – he comes from three generations of military men.
“After Sept. 11, reality kind of struck,” Fetterly said. “I was 25 and I knew there had to be more. I had a job, a car, a house, and everything else – but it all just meant nothing to me. I figured I would do my part and do what I could for our country.”
Fetterly, who returned to Incline Village from a tour in Iraq less than a month ago, graduated from Incline High in 1993.
After high school Fetterly attended the University of Nevada, Reno, and received a bachelor’s degree in political science. Following graduation he took a job with GameTech in Reno.
“Nobody could actually believe I was going to do it,” Fetterly said. “My parents wanted me to go the officer route because I had a degree, but I went the enlisted route because, basically, I wanted to be stripped of everything I had.”
Fetterly’s father, Lynn, was part of the National Guard during the Vietnam era, but he was never activated. His grandfathers were both in World War II – one was in the Navy and the other was in the Army.
“I thought it was very courageous of him to make the decision to go in light of the terrorism climate our country was going into after Sept. 11,” Lynn Fetterly said. “It’s terrific to have him back, especially knowing that he made a significant sacrifice in his life for the good of our of country.”
The return to Incline comes as a welcome change for Fetterly, who is used to 100-plus degree temperatures and the confines of living on a base in the middle of the desert.
“When you’re in that kind of environment you really start to think about the simple freedoms that you used to take for granted,” Fetterly said.
Fetterly was part of the Second Marine Expeditionary Force, one of the Corps’ largest units.
For seven months Fetterly was based in Camp Fallujah just outside Baghdad. He was part of a personal security detail for commanding and deputy generals.
“I was in a unique position because we were covering security for generals who dealt with congressman, ambassadors, dignitaries, and the heads of state,” Fetterly said.
Over the next few months Fetterly plans to relax and spend time with his new wife, Vanessa, and his family.
The couple is part of the Inactive Ready Reserve for the next four years. They were married last December, one month before Fetterly was sent to Iraq.
Vanessa, who is also a sergeant in the U.S. Marine Corps, is finishing her degree from Saint Leo University in Florida and then plans to attend law school at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas.
“It’s a relief to be back,” Fetterly said. “I sit back and look at my hands and my legs and I appreciate everything so much more.”