Our US Marine Calls from Infantry School

Check-In at Marine Combat SchoolAfter enjoying ten days of visiting family and friends, Sean reported to Marine Combat Training (MCT) last Tuesday. He called from the San Diego airport, but we didn’t hear from him after that. From a military parent’s standpoint, no news really is good news. We knew he arrived safely because no one called to tell us otherwise.

Finally, on Saturday, he called both of us during a few hours of liberty. He sounded very relaxed and enthusiastic. He called from the base YMCA, where he hoped to find some connectivity. The raucous background noise attested to many other Marines attempting the same thing, overwhelming the Ys poor little router.  He found the mailing address but is unsure how mail call works; certainly they won’t have mail call in the field.

The hiking at MCT is tougher than boot camp, but otherwise, the intensity has dropped considerably. PT (running, crunches, etc.) “is still PT,” he said, without all the yelling like the DIs did at boot camp.

On Thursday, after much practice with inert grenades, he threw a live one from a concrete bunker. It was “freakishly loud,” and he acutely felt the concussion wave. A combat instructor (CI) accompanied him into the bunker to show him how to chunk it and to keep him safe. (A couple of weeks ago, one unfortunate Marine

Grenade-throwing practice with an inert grenade

Courtesy stock photo by LCpl Michael Atchue

dropped the live grenade. The CI hustled them both out of the bunker and covered the Marine until the grenade exploded.)

On Monday, they head out into the field for land navigation (day and night) and to learn patrol techniques. They also learn to fire machine guns, grenade launchers, rocket launchers, and other weapons. “At least these only explode in one direction,” he reassured me.

He completes MCT on Tuesday, September 27 (we won’t attend this graduation) and immediately heads out to his tech school. He must report to the school that same Tuesday. For those reporting to the east coast (as Sean most probably will), this creates some logistical challenges: graduation finishes at noon, they lose three hours, and they must fly clear across the country. But I’m sure they have it all figured out.

 “I really miss home,” he said (by which he means Denton/Keller just as much as he does San Antonio), but he’s also enjoying himself. If you’d like his address, check Facebook or leave a comment with your email address (I won’t post it) and I’ll send it to you.

I’ll post later in the week with more details of what MCT entails, since we probably won’t hear from him again for a couple of weeks.

–Mighty Marine Mom


Posted on September 4, 2011, in Marine Combat Training, Military Parent, Motherhood, US Marine Corps and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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