Marines are about the most peculiar breed of human beings I have ever witnessed. They treat their service as if it was some kind of cult, plastering their emblem on almost everything they own, making themselves up to look like insane fanatics with haircuts to ungentlemanly lengths, worshipping their Commandant almost as if he was a god, and making weird animal noises like a band of savages. They'll fight like rabid dogs at the drop of a hat just for the sake of a little action, and are the cockiest SOB's I have ever known. Most have the foulest mouths and drink well beyond man's normal limits, but their high spirits and sense of brotherhood set them apart and , generally speaking, of the United States Marines I've come in contact with, are the most professional soldiers and the finest men I have had the pleasure to meet.
-An Anonymous Canadian Citizen
I know that most of you live your day to day lives without giving a second thought to us, or if you do, you think that the job that we do is something that anyone can do. Like being a grunt is just a matter of signing a piece of paper, and learning how to shoot.
I can tell you that my mental and physical limits were tested in boot camp alone, strengthening my resolve to be a tough and immovable symbol of what I represented. In SOI, I was further tested, and there were times when I was so utterly exhausted from the day that I just couldn't push on, when we were ordered to run another patrol instead of rest. And we would do it, properly, alert, and ready to fight, ready to further tire our exhausted bodies.
We would have pushed this way for days, because our Combat instructors were always telling us about their
experiences, and how rough it was for them
. So we pushed ourselves, in hopes of proving ourselves to these veterans, these men who had earned
their place in the corps.
I still haven't, but I work every day so that when my time comes, I can pay my toll and help the men around me pay theirs.
We don't fight for you. ******** you. We fight for eachother, for the brotherhood, the comraderie. You don't understand this because you don't know what it is to work, train, and play with the same men every day, every month. We get to know eachother better than even our own families know us.
So we fight to keep eachother alive. I fight because they are my friends. My mentors. My brothers
. knowing that they died because I didn't do everything in my power to help is unnacceptable.
I know you don't understand, and you never will, unless you take the challenge, as we all are.
Cpl Nicholas S. Ott, NJ, USMC
10 AUG 2011 KIA