Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Marine Moms Online: Their Voices Continue

Why Does My Son Want to be A Marine?

The reasons why some young Americans have chosen to become
United States Marines
As told by their mothers, fathers, wives, and other loved ones


Can anyone tell me why my son wants to be a Marine? I know about Honor, Courage, and Commitment. I know what the Recruiter promised. My son had other options, but said that first, He Must Become A Marine. He didn't share a lot about the whys, just that he had to do it, and is now in his 2nd week of boot camp. I would love to know why some kids chose to serve, and others wouldn't do it if their life depended on it. Can anyone share why they feel their son/daughter chose to become a United States Marine? Is it a "calling?” When does the pride overshadow the fears I have?


Why do our kids choose this kind of life? Look around you at everything you have and stuff others take for granted. Your son only wants to make sure you have everything, freedoms, the right to choose and to be safe. My son, when asked why he is a Marine, his answer is "Why Not!" When told "Thank you for what you are doing," he answers, "My Pleasure."

…My husband has been a Marine for almost a year now. I still don't understand completely why it was that he HAD to become a Marine but I can tell you, you will be so proud of your son. I was against him joining the Marines when he did it and even through boot camp I hated it. But in his letters to him I didn't let him know that and I didn't question his decision to join. They don't need discouraging letters while they are in boot camp. But the proudest day of my life was when I went to Parris Island for his graduation. He looked so handsome in his uniform and I could clearly see the changes that the Marines had made in him. Good changes. It takes a little getting use to but I adjusted. Just hang in there. They get great training. Even now he is still training for what to do in case he gets deployed. That makes me feel better. Thank the Lord he hasn't been deployed yet. But I just wanted to tell you that for me, going to his graduation changed my WHOLE view on him being a Marine. Since that day, I've been glad that he choose the Marines and choose to serve our country.

…You may well have asked the hardest question in the world to answer. When I asked my son why he joined the Marines, and why he picked infantry, he said he wanted to serve with the best of the best (The Marines) and he wanted to serve our country at the very front. I'm not sure they can put into words why they finally make the decision.

…That's a very interesting question. I'd love to hear some of the answers you get from folks on this board who have been in the Marine Corps Family for a while. With my son, it appears as though he was "called." He has planned on becoming a Marine for years. He has never wavered, and is now in his first days at Parris Island. He's a very patriotic young person. Some aren't. He is. All I know is this is something he has to do.

…I truly understand how you feel, as I had the same question. Our Marine was absolutely the last person his father and I would have thought would have entered the military, especially the Marine Corps. Our son was 20 and away at college when he (unknown to us) became interested in the Marine Corps. He told us of his interest while we were driving him home after his second year at college. I think his father almost drove off the road when our heads snapped around to look at him sitting in the back seat. All he ever said is that he wanted a challenge. I do not think he has an overwhelming sense of patriotism, but maybe he feels uncomfortable expressing that. From everything I can understand from our chats (he is not the most open of our children), he wanted a challenge and to prove something to himself and chose the Marine Corps because it is the hardest and the best. I am proud of him and of his decision to become a Marine. The Marine Corps has given him so much... and I do not discount the tour in Iraq. Yes, it was very, very difficult (and that word really does not do the experience justice). He is a different person now, but I think a better person. One that he tries to hide but it is there and not always hidden. I will leave you with the comment he made as we were driving away from Parris Island after Boot. He was leaning over the seat talking to us and at one point said, "After boot, I now know that there will never be anything in my life that I cannot accomplish." I thought Wow, if only I had had that sense of self confidence when I was 21. That is what the Marine Corps gave our son, and I wish all 21 year olds could have that same feeling. Our world would be a different place.

…When I learned my son wanted to join the Marines, I said to him, "Do you know what is going on in the world right now?" He said, “Yes, and I am choosing to be a part of it.” Some are part of the problem, some chose to be part of the solution.

…My son and his friend always wanted to be in the service. His comment was that the uniform really looked the best - he really loves the formal part of it. And he liked that they were the ones who watched over the President of the United States. He has learned so much in the Marines and, yes, all have been trying times. He's been overseas three times and will be in the Marines for 6 years in January. There was one movie that he and I went to after he came back from boot camp. It was Jurassic Park, the third one -- the one where the Marines come and pick up the cast in the end. He stood up and yelled ("Yea") because the Marines came in to save them. His comment after was that in other branches -- the army, is listed as soldiers -- the navy, as Seabees, but the Marines have no distinction - they are all Marines no matter what their rank is - that was really important to him.

…My son said he was felt he was called to be a Marine.

…My son joined because of 9/11. He wanted to protect his country. My son turned down 3 scholarships to college to join the Marines. I think it is a calling to serve.

…My son and I had this conversation well into his 4 year commitment. He was a national merit scholar finalist in high school, a GATE student (gifted and talented), and received a scholarship for college in his senior year. He scored 2 points shy of a perfect score on his ASVAB test. He could have chosen anything. He chose infantry. I was a wreck. He chose the Marines because of the camaraderie of it. He chose the Marines because it is one of the many things he wants to have accomplished during his life. He chose the Marines before 9/11. He chose the Marines because he wanted to shoot guns, roll in the dirt and mud with the guys, and blow things up. He loves his Marine brothers. They are the brothers he never had. (He has one sister.) He is now on the recall list and could go back to Iraq, but would rather not. However, if called, he will go...because he signed the contract. It's about brotherhood. It's about the brotherhood he never got growing up or from friends at school. I get it now. And you will too.

…Our son wanted to be a Marine for such a long time. We just could not accept that fact, until I asked him and he told me he felt "called" to serve. I know that might sound strange, but after visiting with many Marine moms, they say the same thing. Oh there are some that join for other reasons, but you would be amazed at the number of young men who had plans to do something else, but first "HAVE" to do this. It even makes me prouder that he is also sacrificing his own goals and dreams to follow this calling.

…My son told me that he had to because he thought that it would help him become a more responsible man. Getting through boot camp was an enormous accomplishment for him. And I do have to say he is more responsible in many, many ways. The most important reason for my son though was that God put it on his heart to do.

…My son's decision to join the Marines was two fold. He didn't want to go to college because he hated high school and it was really difficult to get him through. He indicated to us (mom and dad) that he couldn't cut it in high school so why should he have us shell out thousands of dollars for him to go to college and bomb out. Secondly, he said he needed the discipline that the Marine Corps would give him. I cannot find fault in his decision because he is doing what he thinks is best for him. I'm so proud of him and his ability to make such a decision. I'm also sad. This is our "baby." Someone counseled me by saying that all the decisions and choices that we made to raise our son was for this very point in time: for him to stand up and be an adult and make the decisions that will allow for his own success. We may not like it, but this is how we raised him.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

im a 19 year old at college right now and i would like to share me thoughts on you and your son being a marine. I think that he wanted to becasue he felt he needed to becasue noadays no one is joining and i think that if that how it was back at any war then America would have fallen now. I beleive because i am a male and i think that he feels that he needs to do what he feel is right in his heart. I know moms dont want to hear that but college is not for some people now i am not saying that your son isnt a college student. But maybe he just thought that before going off to college he should just do what he feels is right. I wanted to join but being the youngest and having no brothers but some sisters its hard for me cause i wanted to after college but my mom wouldnt let me but i know that after 2 years of college i am going to be one because i know that it feels right in my heart and that i know that i need to join and help out my country.