U.S. Marines – United States Marine Corps

New Father in Marines

The brutal physical conditioning, constant mental stress and desolation of emotional distance is enough to make the experience of Mar

 

ine Corps recruit training hard. Pvt. Jonathan Dean, however, had two more reasons to stress during his time aboard Marine Corps Recruit Depot San Diego.Dean arrived at MCRD on Dec. 13, 2010. Just two weeks later, after spending Christmas apart from his family and his wife of nearly two years, Dean learned that his wife had given birth to twins.

“I received a Red Cross message the night of December 27,” said Dean. “Obviously, I knew they were going to be born while I was here (aboard MCRD), but it still came as quite a shock.”

After Dean received the news, he had a hard time concentrating on his training, according to Gunnery Sgt. Michael Blua, senior drill instructor, platoon 2171, Company H.

“At first, he was really distracted,” said Blua. “He was very focused on himself and his ordeal. It made training so much harder for him.”

During recruit training, Marine Corps recruits are cut off from any form of communication except letter writing. For the 13 weeks they are aboard MCRD, they don’t have access to any cell phones, the internet or newspapers.

“It was really hard not being able to talk to my wife or family,” said Dean. “Normally they are my lifeline, especially when something big happens in my life. Not only could I not talk to them after (the birth), I still had to do my best to get through the toughest boot camp in the world.”

Because the birth happened so soon after Dean had arrived at MCRD, the mail took a little longer to reroute. As it always does though, the mail finally started rolling in. Dean received his first picture of his children, Noah and Niko, a couple weeks after they were born.

“That’s when we really started seeing a change in (Dean’s) attitude,” said Pfc. Guillermo Arguelles, Dean’s squad leader for most of recruit training. “Once he got more pictures and letters, he was much happier and much more motivated.”

His drill instructors noticed the change almost immediately as well.

“He became a big morale booster for the platoon,” said Blua. “For a large portion of first phase, Dean was struggling because he was worried about himself and doing things as an individual. Once he saw his kids in the pictures and heard about them in the letters, that really put him in the right mindset to do what he needed to do here (at recruit training).”

As second phase progressed, training started including more field work and rifle skills. Dean said that doing the more “Marine-like” activities really connected him with his platoon. He found it easier and easier to keep the right frame of mind. Once he incorporated that mindset with the values discussed during first phase, the rest of recruit training was a much better experience.

“I found it easier to motivate myself to improve physically and mentally,” said Dean. “I went from nine to 21 pull-ups for the Physical Fitness Test, and I found myself doing things to help out the platoon more and more.”

Blua, in large part, credits Dean for putting in extra effort and inspiring the platoon to overcome small battles, such as what drill instructors call “moto-point.” The moto-point is an additional point during the drill competitions that is awarded for uniform readiness and unit pride.

“Dean put in a lot of extra effort so that could happen,” said Blua. “One point isn’t going to win us (the drill competition), but it was a real point of inspiration for us. It’s those kinds of efforts that give the platoon the drive to take honor platoon like we did.”

Honor platoon is awarded to the platoon that wins the most events during a recruit training cycle.
“The Marine Corps motivates me to always be there for my family, no matter what,” said Dean. “The drill instructors pushed me further than I thought I could go. I’m going to take that guidance and make sure I’m the best father I can be, because being in boot camp really showed me how valuable time is with your family.”


7 Comments for this entry

  • oldcorpscaptain

    “Aboard MCRD?” Nonsense. The REAL USMC died in 1998 when it was no longer the seagoing service it was intended to be. It is simply the Mar-Army now! Pathetic.

  • Gunny Doug

    Pardon me, Capt, but here is a quote from a Marine who would disagree with you about the death of the “REAL USMC”.

    Old breed? New breed? There’s not a damn bit of difference so long as it’s the Marine breed.
    Chesty Puller, USMC

  • jennifer

    HI, I HAPPENED TO COME UPHON THIS SITE, AS I MONITOR MY 13 YR OLD SONS INTERNET ACTIVITY. AS A SINGLE MOTHER WHO HAS ROBBED PETER TO PAY PAUL TO KEEP HIM HERE, HEALTHY AND ALSO A STRAIGHT A STUDENT IN THE 8TH GRADE WITH JUNIOR COLLEGE LEVEL LEAP SCORES, ACT’S AND SAT TESTING. HE IS ALREADY IN THE RUNNING FOR BEING VALIDICTORIAN AT HIGH SCHOOL. THIS KID IS LITERALLY ALMOST GENIUS! THE KIND OF BRAINIAC IS WHAT WE NEED IN THE WORLDS NEXT GENERATION OF JOBS AND LEADERS, INVERNTORS, ENGINEERS ETC.. BUT NOW I SEE THAT HE IS READING ALL OF THIS PATHETIC WRITING ABOUT ARMY, MARINES, ETC. WHY IS IT THAT NONE OF THESE WEB SITES HAVE ANY INFO FROM ALL THE SOLDIERS WE HAVE LOST @ WAR. NOT TO MENTION ALL OF THE TOTALLY MESSED UP GUYS COMING HOME NOT ONLY W/NO ARMS, LEGS, BUT ALSO SO MENTALLY SCREWED UP FROM WHAT THAT HAVE SEEN AND GONE THROUGH WHILE THEY WERE THERE THAT THEY ARE NOW EITHER WANTING TO COMMIT SUICIDE OR ALREADY HAVE. ALL MY SON HAS SEEN SO FAR ON THESE SITES IS THAT IT IS ALL ABOUT, BEING SOOOO WONDERFUL, WHY NOT BE HONEST AND POST SOME OF THE REAL HORROR STORIES OF WHAT REALLY GOES ON AND HELP THEM MAKE A FULLY UNDERSTOOD DECISION, RATHER THEN TELLING TROUBLED KIDS WHO ARE DEPRESSED ABOUT THEIR FATHER NOT BEING THERE, THAT IT WOULD BE BEST TO GO TO WAR,AND POSSIBLY NOT COME HOME AT ALL LIKE SO MANY OTHER FALLEN SOLDIERS AND FAMILIES ARE HAVING TO COPE WITH,OR COME HOME DUE TO NO ARMS, LEGS, BRAIN DEAD ETC. WHY NOT TELL A CHILD WITH SUCH KNOWLEDGE TO GO FOR THE BEST COLLEGE POSSIBLE AND BE THE NEXT DOCTOR OR INVENTOR OF WAR NEEDED MATERIALS, ANYTHING THAT WE SOO DESPERATLEY NEED IN THIS TROUBLED WORLD TODAY. TELL THEM ALL OF THE HEART ACHE STORIES OF MEN WATCHING THEIR BEST FRIENDS GET BLOWN AWAY.TELL THEM WHAT IT DOES TO A PERSONS BRAIN TO SEE MEN, WOMEN AND CHILDREN BLOWN AWAY. I HAVE FAMILY AND FRIENDS OF WAR, MARINES,ARMY ETC. AND WHILE YES IN THIS WORLD TODAY IT MAY REQUIRE SOLDIERS AND WAR TO PROTECT OUR COUNTRY, IT ALSO TAKES DOCTORS, LAWYERS, ENGINEERS, PROFESSORS, ALL KINDS AND SORTS TO MAKE THIS WORLD GO AROUND! THE LAST PERSON I KNOW OF THAT CAME HOME FROM THE MARINES SAYS IT WAS DEFINATELY NOT WHAT RECRUITERS MADE IT OUT TO BE NOR WAS HE GIVEN WHAT HE WAS PROMISED WHEN HE JOINED. YET I SEE NON OF THOSE STORIES ON ANY OF THE SITES MY SON IS LOOKING AT. MY PERSONAL OPINION OF THIS WHOLE SITUATION IS THAT THE KIDS THAT HAVE POTENTIAL TO MAKE THE WORLD A BETTER PLACE AND THE ECONOMY BETTER BY GOING TO COLLEGE, AND MAKING SOMETHING OF THEMSELVES, WHY TRY TO SWAY THEM W/MISLEADING INFO TO JOIN THE MARINES/ WAR AND TAKE A CHANCE WITH THEIR LIFE THAT THEY MAY NEVER COME HOME, AND LOOSE ALL OF THE NIGHTS OF STUDYING TO MAKE PERFECT GRADES, ALL OF THE TESTING ECT. WHY NOT TRY TO RECRUIT KIDS THAT DO NOT HAVE A CHANCE AT GOING TO COLLEGE OR REALLY NO POTENTIAL TO BE SOMETHING GREAT THAT WE NEED OUT IN THE JOB INDUSTRY OR ECONOMY, A CHANCE TO POSSIBLY MAKE IT THROUGH THE MARINES OR WAR AND MAYBE COME HOME A CHANGED PERSON THAT COULD BE A PRODUCTIVE MEMBER OF SOCIETY TODAY. IF ALL U MARINES OUT THERE ARE GONNA TELL YOUR STORIES, THEN TELL ALL OF THE STORIES GOOD AND BAD AND UGLY SO THAT THESE KIDS TODAY CAN MAKE A TRULY INFORMED DECISION ABOUT WHAT THEY WANT TO DO WITH THEIR LIVES. BECAUSE BEFORE MY SON STARTED READING ALL OF THESE “GLORIFIED” STORIES. HE HAD REAL LIFE PLANS OF OWNING HIS OWN ENGINEERING FIRM. HE HAS WORKED NIGHT AFTER NIGHT EVEN GETTING UP AT 4:30, 5:00 AM TO DO EXTRA WORK AND OR STUDYING JUST TO DO HIS VERY BEST! HE HAS DONE A WONDERFUL JOB AT BEING NOT ONLY A GREAT SON, AND KID, BUT ALSO A GREAT STUDENT IN SCHOOL. NOW I READ ALL OF HIS COMPUTER HISTORY AND FIND OUT THAT THE INTERNET IS WORKING VERY HARD ON CHANGING HIS MIND, BECAUSE HE HAS READ THAT IT WILL MAKE U A REAL “MAN”. MAYBE A TOTALLY SCREWED UP MAN BY THE TIME AND IF HE COMES HOME BUT OF COARSE A MAN. PLEASE PEOPLE TELL THE TRUTH! THE WHOLE TRUTH! NOTHING BUT THE TRUTH!!! ENCOURAGE OUR FUTURE GENERATION TO BE ALL THAT THEY CAN BE NOT TO JUST SETTLE, FOR ALOT LESS DUE TO READING SOME POST ON THE NET, THAT I AM QUIT SURE FROM ALL THE PEOPLE AND FAMILIES OF SOLDIERS THAT I HAVE TALKED TO THAT SEEM TO THINK THAT THERE IS ALOT MORE TO ALL THESE STORIES U ALL ARE POSTING ON THESE SITES!

    • Dan

      Jennifer,

      You are a joke. PERIOD. Why dont you do some research into what kind of American it takes to be a Marine? More Fortune 500 companies are run by former Marines than any other service. More Members of Congress came from the Marine Corps than any other branch…..I could go on and on and tell you multiple stories about how absolutely FOS you are…..but honestly I dont really want to waste my breathe….people like you will never understand and its people like you that will be the downfall of this great country…

    • usmcforlife

      Jennifer,

      you have no idea what your talking about, yes your son may be very smart but its his decision what he wants to do with his life. Yes there are many fallen marines but if it was not for them your son might not even be able to go to school. So STFU and learn a few thing before you start blurting out shit you dont know.

  • Randy

    i have want to be a marine since i was 4 years old and i am 15 now as a freshman, my dreams are to be a marine and serve my country and be proud to be a marine!

  • salt dog

    He is one of my marines, this story came as a suprise to me. The reason I say that Is because he Is a exceptional worker, very tech sauvy, and a meritorious marine x1 and Is always getting selected for boards. It goes to show how the marine corp can turn a civillian into a professional member of society.

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