I Did the Same Thing-Quit School and Joined the USMC at Age 17

I joined the USMC at age 17 and it was the best thing that I could have ever done at the same time, just like you. It actually led to me getting my GED and eventually getting a BA and MPA degree later. I don’t think I would ever have made it into college without joining the Marine Corps at age 17 and I have always been very proud of my service in the USMC.
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19 comments


  • Kenneth W Shannon

    Kenneth W Shannon says, I signed up for the 6 month delayed program while I was a senior in high school, Many of my friends said that I would never make it thru boot camp. I graduated the 24th of May 1962 and the 28th of May I was standing in the Receiving Department, MCRD San Diego, Calif. looking out the window watching the men on the big grinder marching and doing the drills. I told myself at that time I was going to prove all my friends wrong, and I did just that. Spent time in Viet Nam came back to States. Made Sgt. upon return. I thank the Marine Corps for everything they made me, and I would do it all over again, I”m proud of being called a Marine. God Bless the Marines and everything it stands for. SEMPER FI


  • Terry Summers Sgt USMC ’67 / ’74

    I am also a member of the 17 year old Marine Corps “club “. Quit school and joined in 1967. MCRD San Diego, Platoon 1012. Went to Vietnam and came back a Sgt. E-5. Got my GED in the Corps and my college degree when I got out. My oldest son joined the Marine Corps in 1988 and was in Desert Shield. His son just graduated Marine Corps boot camp last October 2016. So proud of my 3rd generation Marine grandson. As he prepares to deploy to Afghanistan may God bless our young men and women who continue to step forward to protect the USA and our way of life. Semper Fi Marines.


  • Robert Dickerson, USMC 69 – 71

    Every one of you is singing from the same hymnal as I am. Although I graduated high school before enlisting, I could hardly wait to get out of school and surely would have flunked out of college. Being in the USMC ’69 to ’71 matured me to the point where I thrived in college, graduate school, and in my profession. None of that would have occurred but for the leavening the Marine Corps gave me. Semper Fi, brothers and sisters.


  • ralph f. receveur jr.

    ralph receveur jr says, I joined 9/11-56. 12 days 17. quit high school after 10 th grade. got my ged while in the corps. went to pi weighing 110 lbs, 5ft 6in. left weighing 145lbs and 5ft 9in, in 3 months. my. mos was 6481, helicopter mech. at new river n.c. got out and got a job at boeing helicopters in Pennsylvania as a tool maker on ch-47s and the v-22, retired after 40 yrs. I’m now 78 and back to 5’6”. I have a lot of great memories of the time I spent in the corps. 3 yr tour. semper fi


  • George W. Smith

    Story is almost the same, quit high school at 17, my recruiter had me take the GED prior to going to MCRD in December of ’66. Could believe it, I got 3 squares (all I could eat), new cloths (looked just like everyone else) and they paid me! Unbelievable! Made PFC out of Boot, Vietnam (Chu Lai) April 68 – May 69. Early out September 70 to go to College on the GI Bill, bought a house in ’72 on with my Cal Vet loan, became a Fire Fighter and now I’m retired. None of this would of happened had I not joined our beloved Corps. Semper Fi, Brothers and Sisters and God Bless America


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