Introduction (A little long?)
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  1. #1

    Introduction (A little long?)

    I officially signed the contract/got sworn in on August 15th, but today is when I signed onto this community. Sorry if it is longer than usual, but I take this so passionately that I'd feel a little guilty leaving out details.

    My name is Michael Liao, and I am a 17 year old senior in San Jose, California, attending Piedmont Hills High School. Originally in Sophmore year I had mentally committed myself to serving in the military, with doing Army ROTC in college and serving for 4-6 years afterwards in mind. However, on August 3rd my recruiter called me and asked what I wanted to do, and after telling him what I wanted to do (Army ROTC), he said that was awesome but that he wanted to talk to me about the United States Marine Corps. I have always subscribed into giving everyone a fair shake, and even though I grew up as a child looking up to that image of GI Joe and the US Army, I was pretty resolute on coming into the recruiting office in person even though my mother was against it.

    At the recruiting office (August 6, Monday) the recruiter and I figured out what my goals were and how the USMC could help out (I've always wanted to be a commissioned officer and thought that the potential is within me for a leader of leaders to be born.) But what truly appealed to me about the USMC was that not only did it satisfy that desire to fufill my patriotic duty (I mean I could be a firefighter, law enforcement, National Guard, etc.), but the mental, moral, and physical transformation that it offered was something you don't find right around a street corner. While the recruiter gave me sometime to think things over, he invited me to come to the POOL function on the following Saturday. We went paintballing, and I immediately made friends out there with all the Staff Sergeants, Sergeants, and Poolees. I can also say from that day onward that anyone who does not enjoy a MRE must be insane or have the nerves routing his or her tastebuds all mangled.

    On the 14th (Tuesday) I came into MEPS to take the ASVAB (96), and checked into the hotel that night. I immediately began to experince that sense of camradery as I was rooming with a 23 year old fellow from San Francisco who was shipping out the next day. Hated to see that guy go but was glad he was going to be heading towards something better. By some force of magic all of us USMC applicants ended up together in the elevator, and when all of the other military applicants were playing Halo 2, we were burning the time before curfew in the exercise room. My roommate showed me a picture of his two kids and I hated to see him go the next day. Woke up at 3:45AM to make sure I didn't miss the shuttle to MEPS for my physical. Signed up to be O311 (all the Army guys said I was insane because they said any job was open to me bar aviation because of my vision, but as someone who goes shooting every Saturday and can keep a 1-2 MOA grouping with old British surplus .223 through an AR-15 at 100 yards, I believe the man upstairs gave me the skills to be a good rifleman.) I felt an immense feeling of relief when I shoke hands with the doctor who told me, "Congratulations, you've been found fit to serve." I came home tired that day but proud to be wearing the red shirt.

    Fast forward 15 days to today, and after attending 2 PT sessions, I can truly say that the friends I made at the first POOL fuction are now my brothers. In addition to working out on my own, I've made the commitment to come into the office every Wednesday for PT. (I may be able to run like Forrest Gump and pound out sit ups like they're nothing, but I'm still quite aways from the vaunted 20 pull ups.) I am also looking to arrange for me and one of my fellow poolees (ASVAB scores 96 and 95 respectively) to come into the recruiting office after school before Wednesday PT to assist any applicants who need help academically to pass the ASVAB or just to get through school in general. I may be in here for only 2 weeks, but I've been giving it 'till it hurts during PT and then some and training to fill that guide position should the need arise when the current one ships out.

    In retrospect, I look back on these 15 days since I was officialy DEPd in and I thank the man upstairs that he has given me the physical capability to potentially serve in the USMC (I have friends who have bad athsma or busted up knees who wish they could serve so bad), the mental capability to pass the aptitude tests, and most importantly, the moral integrity to keep to my commitment and NOT QUIT when I feel like throwing up or passing out going up and down bleachers and to shout my lungs in response to the Guide. But most of all, I thank God that I have 10 months and 9 days (Shipping out 20080707) to continue that process of growth to prepare for Boot Camp. The recruiting office is truly my second home (If you see someone doing their physics/calc homework in the office Wednesday afternoon, its probably me), and my fellow Poolees truly are my second family. I may have the Core Values and General Orders committed to my heart as much as I may have the Psalms of the Bible, but I know I have obstacles to overcome.

  2. #2
    Marine Free Member davblay's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Sparta, Tn
    Welcome to the Corps, Michael, and to the site. We are always happy to see new people enter our world. We are here for you and will help you in any way we can, Just browse the forums and ask away.

  3. #3
    Welcome Aboard.

  4. #4
    Welcome aboard. As far as the MRE's go trust me, you'll get sick of them after you've eaten as many as we have. I will admit that there are many good ones...but there are some bad ones too lol.

    Feel free to ask any questions. If it's a question that you think may have already been asked then research the forums first. If you can't find anything then start a thread and you'll have your answers faster then you'll expect.

  5. #5
    Welcome Mike, see you are from my neck of the woods! Maybe we will cross paths before you leave. I'm guessing you are from RSS Santa Clara?

  6. #6
    Marine Platinum Member jinelson's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Newark, CA

    Welcome Aboard Mike!



    No better friend/No worse enemy

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