The ViacomCBS Veterans Network would like to recognize and salute our black veterans for

Black History Month.


Sheryl Underwood joined the Air Force Reserve in the 1980s after taking the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery (ASVAB) test when she attended Atwater High School. Her family was stationed at Castle Air Force base in Atwater, California. Sheryl always knew she was going to be in the military. Sheryl met her husband at Castle AFB and he proposed to her at Maxwell AFB (Montgomery, Alabama) where he was stationed. Sheryl signed up for the Air Force Reserve and went into basic training at Lackland Air Force base in Texas. Then, she went to tech school at Sheppard Air Force base in Wichita Falls, Texas. Her first unit was at Travis Air Force base in Fairfield, California. “Shout out to everybody at David Grant USAF Medical Center! Later, I moved to Chicago and joined a unit at O'Hare Field (O'Hare Air Reserve Station) and was part of two REFORGERS, Team Spirit, Patriot Spirit, Desert Shield, Desert Storm (war games). Shout out to everyone we played games with at Fort Hunter Liggett in Northern California, Yokota Air Base in Japan, Yokosuka Naval Base (near Toyko, Japan), P.I., Philippines, Osan Air Base in South Korea, Kaiserslautern, Ramstein and Zweibrück in Germany and Lakenheath and Mildenhall in England”, says Sheryl Underwood.

Inspirational Person: “My first shirt, Chief Reed, my T.I. Sargent Cruzan and Cornell Arnold Swerdlow, who was my last commander inspired me. All three of them believed in my military career. They believed in my educational career. But, they also believed in my entertainment career. If I hadn’t gone into the military, I don’t think I would be a good Zeta (Zeta Phi Beta Sorority) and a good leader. They seemed to get me to do things that I was afraid of, like fear of heights. They looked at me as a leader all the time.”