PHOENIX — When you ask a military service member what inspired them to serve their country, the answer is often their father, grandfather, or other family members. It’s rarely their mother.
“I definitely feel like I’ve seen some father-son situations but can’t say much about the mother-daughter situations,” said Marisela Morel.
Marisela Morel, 18, and her mother Jessica Morel serve in the Arizona National Guard. Jessica with the Army National Guard and Marisela with the Air Force National Guard.
Jessica enlisted in the Army right out of high school and served for eight years and then returned 15 years later with the national guard.
“I think the opportunity to be a part of something greater than myself is what inspires me,” Jessica said.
She ended up inspiring her daughter Marisela.
“She just persevered through everything she did. Her commitment to not quit is what inspired me,” said Marisela.
The national guardsman members serve in many situations from domestic and abroad. Jessica is an Army chaplain who helps guardsmen with their spiritual and emotional wellness.
“Be with them in the good times and walk through the difficult times that they may be having in their lives. So that we can address it and spend some time with them and be able to get them back on the mission,” Jessica said.
Marisela, who is a full-time ASU student studying aerospace engineering, is getting real hands-on experience working to keep the KC-135 refueling plane airborne so it can refuel fighter jets in midair.
“I specialize in hydraulics. I’m a maintainer and I go out whenever something is broken. It’s my job to help fix it,” Marisela said.
Though they serve together – mom is Army and daughter is Air Force – is there a rivalry at home?
“I think there (is) some fun rivalry that definitely goes on between the two of us,” Jessica added.
THOSE WHO SERVE
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