NewsChannel Five spent last week in San Diego getting a behind the scenes look at the Marine Corps with a group of educators from Wyoming, Colorado and western Nebraska.
We spoke with three Marines, who combined, have served this country for over 40 years.
We talked about the process of becoming a Marine, from the recruiting process all the way to where they are now and how becoming a Marine has defined them as the person they are today.
Becoming a Marine requires a unique individual.
"I was looking for an opportunity to better myself and to challenge myself to be quite frank I wanted to a live a life less ordinary," said Major Hardy Robinson, Commanding Officer for Recruiting Station Oklahoma City.
The men and women that they want to become the next generation of Marines need to have a similar passion.
"We're looking for students with commitment. Highest quality students the high schools have," Major Robinson said.
Once they find those they feel have what it takes to become a Marine. They meet their drill instructor for the first time. They're there to break you down to the bare minimum.
"Let them know that they aren't individuals anymore. Everything that we do in the Marine Corps is a team effort," said Staff Sgt. Keith Pryor, a Marine drill instructor.
Once recruits are broken down, then they begin the process of molding them into the people they will become.
"That's when we start to rebuild them up just a little bit at a time and start instilling good moral values inside of them like honor, courage and commitment," Staff Sgt. Pryor said.
Ask any Marine, the day they meet their drill instructor is not something they'll ever forget.
"It's chaotic. It's a little bit scary, it's intimidating and it's designed to be like that," said Major Isaac Moore, Commanding Officer for Recruiting Station Denver.
"It's chaos, but I tell you what I still know their names. I still remember the things they taught me and I think you can tell by the expression on my face that despite the chaos of the situation, I look back on it fondly because that shapes who you are," Major Robinson said.
Once a recruit is given the title of Marine, that's just the beginning of the challenge. But it's a challenge that most Marines fully embrace.
"I said I was going to do four years when I entered and I knew at about the two year mark that they'd probably be dragging me out of the Marine Corps kicking and screaming. I love the Marine Corps. I always have and I always will," Major Moore said.
Thursday I'll have the third part of my series where I profile a Wyoming recruit currently going through boot camp.