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thedrifter
05-12-08, 09:46 AM
Third-generation Marine finds true brotherhood

5/9/2008 By Pfc. Alicia Small , Marine Corps Recruit Depot San Diego
MARINE CORPS RECRUIT DEPOT SAN DIEGO — From as far back as he can remember he was always treated like a Marine by his family and relatives.

Growing up, Recruit John Kidwell, Platoon 1063, was surrounded by family and friends who were Marines, so he was used to the military way of life, said his grandfather, Richard Kidwell, a retired sergeant major. He said he wasn’t surprised when his grandson chose the Marine Corps and that he was proud of his decision.

His father, said he was also pleased with his son’s enlistment. “He chose to become a man and live life to the fullest,” said Edward Kidwell.

“My father and grandfather provided me with a lot of wisdom and inspired me to do my best at everything,” said Kidwell. “I wanted to get my life going on the right path and figured the Marine Corps was a perfect way to do that.”

Discipline and hard work were values that were instilled in him at an early age, said Kidwell. He was taught these traits were attributes of true leaders.

“They always treated me like a Marine and instructed me to always give 110 percent despite any difficulties that may arise,” said Kidwell. “That’s what leaders do, and a leader is what I was trained to be.”

He was also taught that it is important to show respect to others if he wanted them to respect him. His grandfather said he taught Kidwell to do as he was told without question, no matter how he felt about his drill instructors at the time.

“It shows respect and trust to the drill instructors when recruits listen and do what they are told,” said Richard Kidwell. “There is always a reason for the things they tell you to do. There is always a lesson they are trying to teach.”

Kidwell soon adapted and found a family in his platoon members and drill instructors. He said unlike the sports teams he had been on throughout his school years, he felt the Marine Corps was a true brotherhood.

“My senior drill instructor was like a father, while the other drill instructors were like close uncles,” said Kidwell. “They taught me how to be a part of something important and not take it for granted.”

He said the other recruits were like brothers to him and he learned no matter how much he wanted to argue with them at times, it was important to work together. Without the teamwork and the feeling of the brotherhood, mission accomplishment is impossible.

Just like his family at home, his platoon mates provided him with the motivation and inspiration to work through the hard times. They kept each others’ spirits up and helped each other whenever anyone needed it.

Kidwell said his favorite part of training was the knowledge and discipline he was able to retain.

Kidwell will continue his training during Marine Combat Training School of Infantry, Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton, Calif. He wants to make a career of the Marine Corps and is even hoping to earn an officer’s commission and eventually become a pilot. In the meantime, he is taking one step at a time, living life day-by-day.

“I feel this is exactly where I am destined to be for this part of my life,” said Kidwell.

Ellie