Transcript:>> PATRICIA PURDY: He told me, "I'm joining the Marines." And I kind of laughed because it just -- Marines? >> VERONICA LOPEZ: I hung up the phone, and I cried hysterically because I thought, what person joins the military in a time of war? >> RITA STIGALL: It startled me. I was on the phone, and I think I dropped it. >> LUIS CASTRO: My wife calls me and says, "Your daughter says she needs more of a challenge than college." >> KELLEY SHAW: I wasn't sure I wanted my son to be first to fight. You know, I wasn't sure that that was the life that I wanted for him. >> LAURA SCHOOLCRAFT: I think one of the things that I guess concerned me the most is the not knowing, not knowing what he would be experiencing. And not just even the immediate of boot camp, but what happens after that. >> ROXANNE JUNGE: The day after 9/11 happened, he called us from his dorm room. And he said -- he said, "Mom, I think I'm going to join up. I've got to help." >> PATRICIA PURDY: The thought of my son going in and fighting in Iraq was-- I just couldn't get -- I couldn't wrap my arms around it. I just -- I couldn't. 00:01:03:25 >> LAURA SCHOOLCRAFT: The patriot side of me says, "Absolutely, you know, why would I not support you in this decision? It would go against everything that you know about me and what I've taught you to believe." But then I told him, I said, "But there's the mom side of me. And the mom side of me is a little scared." >> KELLEY SHAW: I think my apprehension and my initial unwillingness for my son to join the Marines -- I think a lot of that was alleviated when I just became more familiar with the Marine Corps and what they stood for and what the values were. >> RITA STIGALL: What type of training he would be going through, how long, if anything should come about where he would have to go overseas, how soon did they foresee that happening? >> LUIS CASTRO: If the decision is to join the Marine Corps, then I would question them, like I did my daughter. 00:02:03:25 I would try to make sure that -- that the decision that they are making and the way that they are headed is exactly what they really want. >> ROXANNE JUNGE: I remember stepping back and saying, if I felt that I loved something enough so that I wanted to make a difference in life, then I'd want my parents to see that that's why, that's why I'm doing what I'm doing. >> PATRICIA PURDY: But then as time went on, I mean, the Marine Corps is really something to be proud about. Not everybody can be a Marine. Not everybody wants to be a Marine, of course. But even those that want to, not all of them can be a Marine. >> VERONICA LOPEZ: It showed him how to look forward, how to plan, how nothing comes easy, how you have to not just take every day at a time and not do the "hasta maňana," you know, "later" thing. It taught him to be confident. It taught him to become a leader. >> KELLEY SHAW: There's a lot of information. The Marine Corps gives you a lot of resources. I just think there's a lot of misconception. I think when you get to know what the Marine Corps really stands for, it changes your perception. 00:03:03:25 >> LUIS CASTRO: Once your kid has convinced you that he or she is ready to do this, then you've got to give them your full support. >> PATRICIA PURDY: It's been a really positive experience. My son has changed for the better. >> VERONICA LOPEZ: There isn't enough words to explain to you how proud I am. It even makes me a little emotional. >> RITA STIGALL: Although I was reluctant, I knew he'd be okay because he was the type of child, if he did anything, he was going to do the best. He was going to be the best. From that point on, it was just, him and the Marine Corps was a match, perfect match. >> ROXANNE JUNGE: If we're really going to have a country that has these freedoms, and nobody is really looking out for them, like saying -- pushing back when they are threatened, I'd rather have my son there because I feel like my son really understands that. And he's doing it for the right reasons. 00:04:03:25 I'm behind you, Josh. You know, I'm there for you. >> KELLEY SHAW: I would have been surprised to know, a year and a half ago, that I would feel the pride that I feel for what he's done now. And I know in my heart now he's made a wonderful choice for his life because he's very, very happy with his decision. >> LAURA SCHOOLCRAFT: When Doug enlisted, it's like we all enlisted right along with him. I am a Marine mom, unabashed sometimes. And there's nothing I guess I like talking about more, is our boys and their service. 00:04:36:28
As a parent or educator, you’ve laid the foundation of character that has led your son, daughter or student to consider the Marine Corps. Now, the Marine Corps would like you to be involved in the milestones ahead, including the decision to enlist, Recruit Training graduation and active service.
The decision to become a Marine affects your whole family, and talking with your son, daughter or student throughout the decision process will be valuable for both of you. It will help you understand and prepare yourself for the realities and pride of service. Here are some important next steps for you:
Be prepared: read the information, and watch interviews of people who are in your situation. Download the PDF’s on the right and make notes on the topics that are important to you. Use it as a reminder during your conversations with your son, daughter or student.
We encourage you to listen. Find out why he or she is interested in becoming a Marine. There are many reasons, and you can help them understand aspects of the commitment they may not have considered yet.
Stay involved as they learn more. Talk to your local Marine recruiter together, even if your son, daughter or student already spoke with a recruiter. If you haven't met with a recruiter yet, you can visit Marines.com, fill out the Request More Information form and review the literature you receive together.
Throughout the journey as a Marine, your son, daughter or student will thrive on your support. Your letters during Recruit Training or Officer Candidates School will keep them motivated to earn the title “Marine.” When they do, you are strongly encouraged to attend the graduation ceremony, where you will see them as a young man or woman indisputably transformed.
Keep in touch as much as possible while he or she is on assignment. Again, your contact will remind them why they decided to serve and keep them motivated. Becoming a Marine can strengthen the bond between you and your son or daughter if you enter into the journey together.
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