Charging Forward: A Marine’s Journey

By Ray Pinard | October 21, 2013

Here’s an interesting article, crossposted from Business Horizon Quarterly, on

When I joined the Marines at 17 years old, I thought I knew exactly what I was signing up for. Like many of our men and women in uniform, I was looking for an adventure outside of the small Kentucky town that I’d grown up in. Now, after deploying to combat zones, receiving the Medal of Honor for my actions in Afghanistan, and traveling the world, those early days almost seem like a lifetime ago. Still, I remember getting on the bus in Kentucky that would take me to the Marine Corps Recruit Depot in South Carolina and thinking that a fourteen-hour bus ride would be tough. I quickly learned when I reached Parris Island that tough takes on a whole new meaning at boot camp. I’ll never forget when the bus crossed the swamp to the island and I got my first taste of the drill instructors.

“Put your head between your legs! Don’t move or blink!”

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Originally published October 2013. Reprinted by permission,, October 2013.
Copyright©2013, U.S. Chamber of Commerce.

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