Airman from Trinidad has a purpose

Staff Sgt. Sarah Timberlake, 319th Logistics Readiness Squadron traffic management journeyman, mentors Airman 1st Class Brandon Massiah, 319th LRS traffic management apprentice on how to use their traffic management program on Grand Forks Air Force Base, North Dakota. Massiah was born in Trinidad and Tobago, San Fernando and is on his way to become U.S. citizen through the help of the U.S. military. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Xavier Navarro/Released)

Staff Sgt. Sarah Timberlake, 319th Logistics Readiness Squadron traffic management journeyman, mentors Airman 1st Class Brandon Massiah, 319th LRS traffic management apprentice on how to use their traffic management program on Grand Forks Air Force Base, North Dakota. Massiah was born in Trinidad and Tobago, San Fernando and is on his way to become U.S. citizen through the help of the U.S. military. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Xavier Navarro/Released)

GRAND FORKS AIR FORCE BASE, N.D. -- Airman 1st Class Brandon Massiah, 319th Logistics Readiness Squadron traffic management apprentice, is on his way to officially becoming a U.S. citizen.

He and his mother are originally from Trinidad and Tabago, San Fernando. He was raised in Trinidad by his grandmother while his mother went to United States to seek for a new beginning, eventually joining the U.S. Army.

After he had graduated high school, Massiah traveled to the U.S. to live with his mother to attain a green card and a driver's license which would later start his process of becoming a U.S. citizen. Massiah was told the U.S. military would expedite the procedure.

"Three of my family members are serving in the U.S. military and I had decided from their feedback that I would join the Air Force," said Massiah. "I want to take life as an adventure and hopefully it happens when I get to see the world."

Before coming to America, he had a soccer and cricket scholarship to play nationally at the University Trinidad and Tabago, but decided to enlist on July 28, 2015, at Fort Hood, Texas.

"The biggest shock I faced coming to the U.S. was experiencing all four seasons," said Massiah. "In Trinidad there were only two seasons, rainy and sunny."

He considers himself an American Airman and believes all of the Air Force Core Values are important.

"I think excellence in all you do stands out because it makes you a better person," said Massiah. "If your grandmother tells you to make your bed, you can't make your bed half way or else your grandmother will tell you to do it again."

Explaining why becoming an American citizen is special to him, Massiah said "I will be very excited when I become an American citizen because of the opportunities I will get by staying in the military."

"I wanted to serve personally so that I can expand my horizons to become the best Airman I can be."

Massiah has just finished the First-Term Airman Course here and is planning on completing two volumes of his Career Development Course within two months.
Massiah considers himself as a perfectionist and loves to be the best at whatever the task may be.

"I like competition, anything that can be done no matter what it is, whether it's Below the Zone, Career Development Course or my education," said Massiah. "I want to be known as someone who makes a difference and not just a person going day by day not trying to improve themselves because that to me is a waste of time."

As a TMO household goods apprentice, Massiah gets to meet a lot of people who leave and enter the base.

"The more people you meet, the more you interact with people," said Massiah. "TMO is a stepping stone for me to work with people who have been in longer and are willing to help you."

The confident Airman has faith in the system on how fast his citizenship will be completed.

"I might get my citizenship from 3 months to a year," said Massiah. "It's all according to how fast I finish my part and how fast the other side does their part."

Massiah lives by a quote from the father of a friend which he says he will never forget.

"He always told me, 'you have a purpose.' To me at that time it didn't mean much because I was a youth," said Massiah. "It's crazy where your life used to be and where it is now, I just remember what he said: 'you have a purpose.'"