For me, it never was the day he left for school. Heck, his mom redecorated his bedroom within 48 hours of his departure...LOL, not that she didn't miss him, but that was her coping mechanism. We felt like the day he left for school, we had done as much as parents could do for a son, now it was time for him to follow his path. He didn't achieve all the things that earned his appointment because he needed Mom or me to hold his hand. I am prior service enlisted, but since oldest son left for WP, when i hear the Star Spangled Banner my eyes will well up. It's pride. It's love of country. It's hope that all of our service men and women make it through the day. That thought is what stays on my heart, as a dad.