Was in the office of a man yesterday. Noticed ... I couldn't help not ... the huge Marine Corps flag. "Were you in the Marine Corps?", I asked. No, he said. But his 22-year-old grandson from College Station, Texas is.
He showed me pics. In his utilities with a SAW (squad automatic weapon) slung over his shoulder. Lookin' good. I asked if he is a SAW gunner. No, he is now a sniper. His platoon calls him "Angel". Sounds like he's effective to me. He's getting ready to pick up corporal.
Saw pics of this Marine in his blues with his beautiful young bride. The proud grandfather told me that this young man is going to renew his wedding vows when he gets out of the USMC next month.
You see, he hasn't seen his bride much.
Like generations of Marines before him, he just signed up. When you sign up, you never know what history will deal you. You just know that when history calls that the Marines will certainly be there when the phone rings. Sometimes history doesn't call for a while. Then, it does. While the frequency of calls varies, the response remains consistent. The Marines must be ready.
As for the grandson of my friend, this Marine signed up on 9/8/01.
And in this Marine's 48 months of service ... 41 will have been spent in the combat zones of Afghanistan and Iraq. Three-and-a-half years in combat zones.
Welcome home, Marine.