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 Q. Hello, my name is Stuart Robertson, I am 15 and I come from a big military family, I already know it is my destiny to be in the military and for this I am glad, but my only problem is that I am torn between two decisions, to either join the Army or the Marines. I would rather join the Marines but I think that my grandfather and father would rather me be the Army, while my great uncle, a World War 2 Marine veteran would want me to be in the Marines. If possible, email me with some advice. Thank you.


A. Thanks for writing to me. It is always a pleasure to get email. I make it a policy to answer every email that I get.

First, let me say that your willingness to serve your country is noble. I think it is every American's duty to serve at least one tour in the Armed Forces.

But what worries me about what you said is that it sounds like your motivation for joining stems from your family and not from your heart. The first issue you must resolve is who are you joining up for: yourself or your family? If the answer is the latter, then you have some more thinking to do. It is honorable to make your family proud and I derive a certain amount of satisfaction from it myself. But they will not be there when you are going through bootcamp, when you are going through the rough times that you cannot even imagine yet. Your motivation needs to be for your country and come from your inner self. The need to satisfy or live up to your lineage is not enough to allow you to excel. This is one time where you have to think about what YOU want because it is your life and you will have to endure the consequences.

Now, if you decide that you want to do this, you then have to decide which service to join. I will not sway you either way because you have to research what each one stands for and align that with what you want to accomplish. Again, your decision must NOT hinge on what the wishes are from your family. Now that is not to say that you cannot go to them and ask what it is like to be in one service or the other. In fact, that is what you SHOULD do. Each service has its own beliefs and priorities. You must discover what those are and which one you are best suited for. After you make that decision, then you must go after it with fury and violence of action, letting nothing nor no one get in your way. Good luck.

Semper Fi and God Bless!

-- Lt Grose

Email -- jdgrose115@polyglut.net
Web -- http://members.tripod.com/~jdgrose115/

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