Our TITLE goes FAR BEYOND mere identification. It is our lifeblood. We become Marines, and Marines we remain – even unto our very last breath. 

~ Excerpt from Chapter 16: “Your Title” 

I arrived on Parris Island, South Carolina on 14 September 1993, and placed my feet at a 45 degree angle on our yellow footprints. This began my journey in which I would become forged into a brotherhood of “The World’s Finest” that I would remained connected to…FOREVER.

On 9 November 2012, as I donned my Dress Blue “A” uniform for what would be my last Marine Corps Birthday Celebration on Active Duty, two words resonated through my mind – “Thank You”. I wear the Medals, Ribbons, Rank Insignia and Hash Marks proudly BECAUSE OF YOU. You put them there. I served over half my life in our beloved Corps of Marines; BECAUSE OF YOU. Marines, I am your Gunnery Sergeant and I sincerely care about you. My retirement from our Active Ranks does not change a thing. I AM ALWAYS HERE FOR YOU.

Our title “United States Marine” is DESIRED BY MANY, EARNED BY FEW, and REVERED THE WORLD OVER. Above all else, we are a BAND OF BROTHERS AND SISTERS that I will remain connected to FOREVER.

From the freshest boots off the yellow footprints at our Recruits Depots, to the beloved Marines that have laid down a LEGACY that most institutions could only HOPE to attain, THANK YOU.

Thank you for the 20 years you epitomized Honor, Courage and Commitment. Thank you for your sacrifices both at home and abroad. I wish you nothing but prosperity and success during our transition to peacetime.