Various U.S. Marines that have completed recruit training often compare their experience to what the new generation of Marines endure. Whether it is describing how much has changed over the years or sharing old sea stories, every Marine has a story to tell. Recruit Edwin Morales’ story is just unfolding as he completes recruit training.
“I’ve liked boot camp so far. I mean, it’s different and challenging. You won’t get this anywhere else but here,” said Morales, a native of Cape Coral, Florida. “So far my favorite part has been initial drill.”
Morales was recruited by Staff Sgt. Mario Sanchez from Recruiting Substation Fort Myers, Recruiting Station Fort Lauderdale. Having arrived at Marine Corps Recruit Depot Parris Island in late July, Morales is scheduled to graduate on Nov. 10, 2016 with Platoon 3090, Company M, 3rd Recruit Training Battalion. Once he completes recruit and combat training, he will attend the Marine Corps Engineer School aboard Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune, N.C., to become a combat engineer.
“A ton of my family members will be coming [for my graduation] from both my mom’s and dad’s side,” said Morales. “My fiancé will also be attending with some of her family.”
Through the various tales that Marines tell each other, each has their main reason for joining the Corps.
“I had a good job with great pay, but I wasn’t really happy. When I was on a trip with my fiancé, we were walking in a hotel where the Marine Corps Ball was taking place,” said Morales. “I overheard a conversation between a couple Marines. One was talking about air crewmen and how he was able to be the gunner a couple times. He said he loved that job and wouldn’t trade it for anything in the world.”
The next day, without hesitation, I called the local recruiter’s office and decided to enlist in the Marine Corps. I wanted to feel that pride that the Marines there felt during their celebration, said Morales.
What attracts young men and women into the Marine Corps and, thus, recruit training has been and will continue to be different for everyone. There will always be a new story, a new family, and new Marines that will be able to share their tale of joining the ranks.
“The uniform is crisp and fresh, making you feel like a Marine. When you put on the uniform before the start, you get to see yourself and think ‘that’s who I want to be, and that’s who I am right now,’” said Morales.