Brody Lockwood - Like a typical fledgling, I started down the track of financial indebtedness. Nineteen years old and nothing to lose. Credit - who need it? Savings - that was for older people with responsibility. Debt - my parents were in debt ergo it must be OK. When I was eligible for reenlistment, I reenlisted for a multiple of 3 worth $15K. I was happy to pay off my debt, but would I be able to stay out of debt?

Finally, a Senior NCO sat me down and taught me about mutual funds, debt reduction, and how to be financially responsible, He taught me how to live within my means and still have fun as a young "responsible" adult. I am now that Senior NCO, reteaching the same financial ethics that my teacher taught me. I am a Command Financial Specialist for my battalion. I praise the Savings Deposit Program and the Thrift Savings Plan. 

Financially, I am sound. I have no worries in the world. I got started young and invested early. Now I am able to save for my daughter's education in 529 plans all while saving form my own retirement. I wish that others, especially younger service members, could see through my eyes. Learn what I have learned. I thought about where I wanted to be in retirement and I worked my way backwards developing a financial plan. I opened my first mutual fund at age 21 and slowly acquired one after another.

I have suffered through two economic down-turns but I remain resilient and stay invested weathering out the storm. By not allowing myself to time the market and implementing dollar-cost-averaging, my portfolio has responded nicely over time. A day in the market measures your fortitude; a lifetime of investing measures your willingness to be great.

Gunnery Sergeant Robert E. Lockwood II


We want to brag about you! If you have a story to tell about your organization's Military Saves activities, please contact us.

Tell us about:

  • How you got the campaign going in your unit or other organization
  • What you've done to involve children and other family members
  • How much money your members have saved since getting involved in Military Saves
  • Particular individuals and families whose lives have improved because of saving money, or
  • Whatever you're especially proud of and want the rest of the military community to know about!

Tip of the Day

  • Summer is a great time to teach your child about finance. Start with the Money as you Grow program http://moneyasyougrow.org/ 

Pledge to Save

I pledge to save money, reduce debt, and build wealth over time. I will encourage my family and friends to do the same

Pledge to Save

Saver Stories View all »

On the Right Track to Build Wealth

My name is Robina Wahl, and I am a military wife and a veteran. Although I am fairly new to the Military Saves Campaign, the message to “Build Wealth, Not Debt” reassured me that my husband and I were on the right track and doing the right things.

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Relevant Finance from First National Bank

From Get Smart About Credit Day in October 2008 through Military Saves Week in February 2009, participants learned the financial facts of life. Lessons were focused on check writing, understanding the stock market, credit cards, differentiating between needs and wants and budgeting.

In one session First National Bank personalized the ABA Education Foundation’s Teach Children to Save Money Tree lesson with an emphasis on saving. The lesson taught students how to manage money and pay bills while saving.

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Start Small and Keep on Saving

MajKenisky

Although Major James Kenisky only recently took the Saver's Pledge, he has been living by its tenets for many years: Start Small. Think Big.

Starting Small

I want this story to help others and I am certain I am not the only one who has achieved the level of success in the military that I have.  I am just one voice.  I started saving when I became a Second Lieutenant in the United States Air Force.

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