May 2, 2012
Honor. Courage. Commitment. These are the core values instilled in Marines from the moment they set foot on the yellow footprints at a Marine Corps recruit depot until the time they take off their uniform for the last time. When they raised their right hand and swore to defend the U.S. Constitution, they knew it would come with great sacrifice. Family, school and personal freedoms take a backseat to mission accomplishment.
Nobody is more familiar with these sacrifices than Cpl. Mike Wong, 24, a former City College student who returned in February from a six-and-a-half month deployment to Afghanistan.
In 2008, with America still engaged in two wars—Iraq and Afghanistan—Wong heard his call to serve. Despite being a full-time student and working part time at a local ophthalmology practice, he enlisted anyway.
More than two years into his enlistment with no deployments under his belt, he finally received the news. Wong would be deploying to Afghanistan the following summer. However, instead of being ordered to go, he volunteered.
“I was excited when I found out I was going,” says Wong, a landing support specialist with 4th Landing Support Battalion, based at Sharpe Army Depot in Lathrop, Calif. “I signed up for it so I was glad I got to go.”
Though he was eager for his chance to serve overseas, he soon learned the harsh realities of war.
Within weeks of…» Read More