30 years ago today I stepped off the parade grounds at MCRD San Diego
a freshly minted Marine. Much has happened in the ensuing years but
the pride I felt that day is still with me.
The process of becoming a
Marine is not easy, in fact it was the second hardest thing I have
ever done. My sense of who I am was not only remolded but changed
forever during those long 12 weeks in 1982.
Defending our country is something that in my opinion is something
that everyone should have to do. Personally if I had it my way there
would be a mandatory 2 years of military service required of our young
people in this country. I believe that if service was compulsory the
attitudes in people would be different.
Esprit de Corps, pride in
country and learning how to be a team player is not something that
comes naturally to most but has to be taught. There is no better
teacher than the military.
The process of being in the military is not easy, however as my drill
instructor told my platoon those many years ago, “It takes a
dictatorship to maintain a democracy”. The military is a dictatorship
of sorts both necessary and needed in a world that has not learned how
to be a peace.
So today I am having my own little celebration that I have done my
small part to bring about and maintain freedom for myself and all of
you. The knowledge that I have been changed forever because of it
stands beside me a silent sentinel.
I also would like to thank my
friend Tom Hansen for his service as well. Tom graduated the same day
from MCRD. Semper Fi my brother!
Today enjoy your life, your freedom and thank a veteran, if you have
served, I thank you from the bottom of my heart!