What Motivates Someone to join the Marines?
You willingly join the Marine Corps. Something motivated you, whether it was your father or your grandfather who was in the military, or maybe it was something as simple as a commercial you saw that made your heart skip a beat when you saw that soldier helping his fellow brother out of harm’s way. Whatever it was, you made the decision.
You go through boot camp. You graduate. Nothing in your life can make you feel prouder than the moment you get your rank pinned on your collar. Nothing. That’s it, you are ready!
A little time goes by and finally, it happens. You get orders. The first time you hear about it, excitement, fear, thankfulness to get a chance to join the fight…all these feelings well up into tearful eyes, but you don’t cry, because you are a Marine. You may tear, but you don’t cry. This is the moment you’ve been waiting for.
On the field, there are bullets flying past you. A fellow Marine gets shot, another one throws himself over a grenade to save your life. So much happens in a blink of an eye. “Is this what I signed up for,” runs through your head for a split second, only a second because there’s no time to ponder when your Sergeant smacks you on your Kevlar and says, “Wake up, Corporal, and cover Jennings.”
There comes those feelings again. Those tears try to well up, but you know you need your vision to align your sites. No time to dwell on petty things like feelings. A fellow Marine needs your help.
Jennings makes it. You grab the Marine who was shot and he survives. This is what it’s all about.
You just took part in a mission that saved a whole village of foreigners from getting blown up by their own people.
You finally get access a few weeks later to the internet. You see this news report about how everybody wants to bring all the troops home. Then you look to your left and you see a five year old girl that you managed to alert a bomb squad about.
They managed to get the bomb off the five year old that was put on by her parents before it was detonated. She smiles at you. Those tears come back. And all you can do is just smile, shake your head and say to yourself, “If they only knew.”
Written By: Venus A. Perez
Venus Angelica Perez grew up in Bensonhurst, New York and is a former Marine and a current disabled veteran. She is also the author of Mentality Listens and a Christian Mafia trilogy that will be released later this year (title TBD). She expresses herself through art to cope with her pain. Her gifts include painting, photography, and writing. To learn more about the author, please visit her website at blessedbklynite.com.
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