Heavy equipment is used throughout the world by the United States military. The public may only see images of the battle field, but there are thousands of heavy equipment operators scattered across the globe making a major difference in the success or failure of many military projects. Two of the most compelling operators are identical twins currently serving with the 455th Expeditionary Civil Engineer Squadron in Afghanistan.
Meet Master Sergeant Jeremiah Graves and Master Sergeant Joshua Graves. Jeremiah is a Heavy Equipment supervisor while Jeremy is a project manager for the unit. The two brothers have relied on each other throughout their lives and now are doing the same in a combat zone. They not only look almost exactly the same but their paths in life have also been extremely similar.
The Minnesota Center for Twin and Family Research conducted studies on the Graves twins and concluded that the brothers are the most genetically similar twins they’ve ever studied. In the real world, as well, the brothers reinforce the findings in the study.
“We have accomplished many things together,” said Joshua in an article on the official Air Force website. “Our lives have nearly mirrored one another’s. It has been like having your best friend there for almost everything.”
The brothers hail from Minnesota and are deployed as part of the Air National Guard 148th Fighter Wing out of Duluth. Both enlisted in the military because of a love of their country, and attended basic training together in Texas in 1992.
“The reason why I am here is to serve my country,” Jeremiah said. “In civilian life, I’m a police officer and I serve my local community but here, it’s a much bigger picture I have the opportunity to serve the nation.”
According to Brenda Graves, Jeremiah’s wife, the brothers have always been close and have a passion for law enforcement, when away from the military. Jeremiah is a sergeant of the Drug and Violent Crime Task Force for the Duluth Police Department. Joshua serves as a patrol sergeant for the local Sheriff’s department.
North America Heavy Equipment Training Services (NAHETS) salutes Jeremiah, Joshua and all of the military personnel stationed across the world. They all serve a very important and honorable purpose, but we have a special place in our hearts for those who are operating heavy equipment in very difficult circumstances.
Image courtesy of Jeremiah and Joshua Graves.