This story was submitted by Aaron Conklin to highlight the accomplishments of his lifelong friend, Robert Sylvester.
The two met at age 8 as students at Mount Markham. They became best friends, played on the Mustangs football team together. Rob worked for Aaron’s dad, Terry Conklin at Conklin’s Service.
Both joined the U.S. Navy in 1992 after graduating from Mount Markham. When Aaron retired in 2016 Rob was there as a side boy. When Rob retired two years later Aaron was the guest speaker.
Here is his story about their friendship and Rob’s recent graduation with his MBA.
Both men are members of the West Winfield VFW and looking for ways to serve the community.
By Aaron Conklin
Robert Sylvester is a graduate of Mount Markham’s Class of 1992.
He is a native of Leonardsville. He joined the Navy right out of high school in 1992 where he served until 2018.
He has deployed several times to the Mediterranean sea, Persian Gulf, including both Iraq and Afghanistan. He started out as an undesignated airmen but changed course and became a Navy Hospital Corps serving the majority of his time as a fleet Marine force corpsmen with the Marine Corps.
He achieved the rank of Master Chief Petty officer (E-9) that is in the top 1 percent of the entire Navy. He is married to his wife Victoria and they have a son, Robert. Victoria is from the Dolgeville area.
He left for boot camp in August 1992. I had to wait until September so he was a month ahead of me. We saw each other in boot camp but could not speak to each other. (I slipped in some words.)
He went off to Oceana, VA. into a strike fighter squadron while I went to Norfolk, VA. on ships company for USS Saipan.
He got lucky. He lived the shore duty life and I was on the ship. Big joke for him to me.
We passed each other in the Chesapeake Bay as I came off a deployment of seven months and he was headed out on the USS George Washington…