Saturday, May 20, 2006

Duncan's Creed

Because of the number of requests, I secured Duncan's permission to print here the letter he dashed off almost a year ago and gave to his friends who asked him why he would want to go into the Marines. Please remember that these are the heartfelt words and emotions of a then 16 year old young man. Now that he is 17 and signing the Delayed Entry Program papers in a few weeks, he tells me he stands by them. If anything, were he to write it today, he says it would be a longer and stronger statement. The rest of this post consists entirely of his words.

***

Everyday, people ask me why I want to join the military and, everyday, I stuggle to give them an answer they can understand. And, everyday, I fail. It's not because I want to get lots of shiny medals or handshakes from the President, and it's not because I want to make anyone proud. It's a feeling that has haunted me my entire life, the feeling that it's the right thing to do, the feeling that it is there that I belong.

The fact is: I am willing to stand between you and the people who are trying to kill you. I intend to place myself in harm's way for you. So why do you look at me like I'm crazy? Why do some people despise me because of what I intend to do? Why does everyone want to talk me out of this? I know: you don't understand me. Fact is, I don't understand you, either.

Honestly, how can you watch television and watch photos of war and slavery and then go on eating your dinner like nothing's really going on? What has made you stop caring about the world around you? Are you aware, even a little bit, of the sacrifices being made every day to keep you safe and comfortable in America. The nation that forgets its defenders will, itself, be forgotten and lost one day. If you aren't able to realize and appreciate the sacrifices made for your freedom, you don't deserve to be free.

I'm not doing this for my family and, in some ways, I' not doing it for my country. In fact, I will still do it even if I don't get support from either of them. So lead me, follow me, or get the hell out of my way. No matter where or when, Marines have an obligation to each other, to the Corps, and to our country and those who cannot defend themselves. We take that obligation with us everywhere we go. I will protect these ideals with my life.

The reason I write this is that I want my family and friends to understand why I want to fight. Do you honestly believe I WANT to put myself in harm's way? No, but I am willing to stand in the gap if no one else will. Isaiah 6:8, "And I heard the voice of the Lord saying, "Who shall I send? Who will go for us?" And I said, "Here am I. Send me."

Semper Fi.

***

11 Comments:

At 5/20/2006 08:55:00 PM , Blogger Zoe's Mom said...

Beautiful and well written! You have quite a son, but then, so does God.

Jennifer

 
At 5/21/2006 01:46:00 AM , Blogger Cassie.DeWitt said...

honestly,
your son's excerpt has spoken to my heart...mainly because it has shown me that it doesnt matter if i continually feel separated from others beccause of my intellectual gifts and the fact that i want to do something that will cause me to have no life for the next 6 plus years...

mainly-i have learned (or perhaps have been reminded)that nothing should stand in the way of God and the hope of what i wish to become.

tell your son thanks...

 
At 5/21/2006 12:54:00 PM , Blogger Kari said...

I am grateful every day for people like Duncan who understand the importance of being a warrior. He knows that people need to be protected even if they don't deserve it sometimes. Duncan is definitely a child of God, and it's great to see that the character of his creator is shining through so brightly. I am encouraged, and he is continually in my prayers.

 
At 5/21/2006 04:29:00 PM , Anonymous Darlene said...

Just wait until Duncan receives his Eagle, Globe and Anchor pin and his officially pronounced a United States Marine. Then to watch those young men throw back their heads and sing the Marine Hymn for the first time, all I can say is have a box of tissues ready. There is nothing like it... there won't be a button left unpopped on your shirt. My son had the same feelings that Duncan does when he signed up with the delayed entry program almost 2 years ago. Duncan's words touched my heart and I thank him and every other young man or woman that proudly serve our country on a daily basis.

Semper Fideles and my God bless you and keep you, Duncan.

 
At 5/21/2006 04:50:00 PM , Blogger DJG said...

Praise God for Duncan! I know I do.

 
At 5/22/2006 06:58:00 AM , Anonymous Danny Gill said...

Thanks to you for sharing this, and for sharing Duncan with us.

Thanks to Duncan for choosing to place himself between us and those who would harm us.

Thanks be to God for giving Duncan a warrior heart.

 
At 5/22/2006 11:02:00 AM , Blogger Mark said...

Duncan,

From the Marines of Marine Corps League Northwest Detachment 162 in Northville Michigan OOHHH RAHH!! The moment you run off the bus at PI or San Diego with a DI yelling and screaming because you are going to slow (it's never fast enough) you will be forever changed. After all the push-ups you do because somebody else screwed up, the hills you marched or the thoudsands of sand flea bites you get; the best day of your life will be when they no longer call you "recruit" (or some other unrepeatable name), but call you Marine. You will have EARNED IT and earn it you will.

A saying I like
"Some people spend an entire lifetime wondering if they've made a difference. The Marines don't have that problem."

Stay focused, stay mentally sharp and physically fit. Listen to the Drill Instructors and all the instructors you come acrossed, remember their teachings, master the exercises and then when the time is right pass it on to your fellow Marines.

Most importantly remember always, "The more you sweat in peace time, the less you bleed in war"

Semper Fi
Mark Sutton
Member of Livonia CoC
Commandant, MCL Northwest Det 162

 
At 5/23/2006 02:33:00 PM , Blogger Laurie said...

Thank you Duncan and Duncan's dad for sharing. It is a travesty that people aren't grateful for those who serve in our military. God Speed!

 
At 5/23/2006 03:27:00 PM , Blogger CrazyJo said...

Go Duncan!
What a great son you have. I'm so glad we still have men like him defending our freedoms.

 
At 5/23/2006 03:58:00 PM , Anonymous Courtney Strahan said...

Patrick,
thanks for sharing Duncan's heartfelt words, and a thank-you to Duncan for letting you share them.

To Duncan: Thanks, man. I guess that is all I really can say, that and I'm proud to know another Marine (to be). Good luck, and may God bless you richly.

-Courtney Strahan

 
At 5/29/2006 12:31:00 PM , Blogger Niki said...

Wow! I say that a lot to the posts here.

Duncan - I'm so proud of you and thankful for your spirit, your protection, your dedication and determination, and most of all - your example to follow God's call on your life. We are trying to teach our boys (and girl) the same things. Bless you and those who trained you well!!

Patrick, thank you...there are no words other than...thank you!

 

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