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Patriotic Article
Military
By USMC Pfc. Katalynn M. Thomas

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Father's Past Motivates New Marine
(January 10, 2011)

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For Recruit Kyle Schutter, Platoon 2134, Company F, 2nd Recruit Training Battalion, it was his father, a veteran who was awarded the Bronze Star for his actions during the Vietnam War.

“I've been striving to become a Marine ever since I was 12,” said Schutter. “I decided I want to go through the same basic training my father endured over 30 years ago.”

Before Schutter enlisted in the Marine Corps, he worked for the parks and recreation district for four years in his hometown of Oak Park, Ill. He was an electrician, plumber and general maintenance worker.

According to Schutter, the district functions on 20 different locations, and its purpose is to keep the buildings safe, up to code and looking good. When the district heard that
Recruit Kyle Schutter, Platoon 2134, Company F, 2nd Recruit Training Battalion, performs crunches during his final physical fitness test before graduating from boot camp, Dec. 23, 2010. Crunches are the second part of a three-part test that recruits take during boot camp, and annually once they become Marines.
Recruit Kyle Schutter, Platoon 2134, Company F, 2nd Recruit Training Battalion, performs crunches during his final physical fitness test before graduating from boot camp, Dec. 23, 2010. Crunches are the second part of a three-part test that recruits take during boot camp, and annually once they become Marines.
Schutter was joining the Marines they made him an offer they thought he wouldn't refuse.
The offer that was set on the table was full benefits and $50,000 a year, which could set him up set up him for a potentially comfortable life. Regardless, Schutter gave this up to join the Marines.

“It wasn't a hard question of whether I was going to give it up or not,” said Schutter. “I had worked there for four years without benefits, seasonally, so giving it up wasn't that big of a deal to me.”
Schutter used to watch the History Channel. The stories of the infantrymen were a big motivator to him, especially “Band of Brothers.” Along with the programs on television, he had his father's past as a motivator.

“About three months before I left for boot camp, I went rummaging through my father's desk at work,” said Schutter. “In one of the drawers I found his Bronze Star. He had never talked about his experiences much, so I asked him about it.”

Schutter's father was drafted during the Vietnam War and was trained as an M60 machine gunner. His father was on patrol outside of a main artillery firing base when his platoon came under enemy attack. Without thinking of his own safety he threw down continuous, heavy fire and gas grenades repelling the enemy, said Schutter.

His actions saved his platoon and the men of the forward artillery base they were defending. This led to him receiving the Bronze Star, according to Schutter. He continues to serve his country by working for the Department of Veterans Affairs as the chief of staff of Hines Blind Center, Melrose Park, Ill.

While Schutter was still at home with his parents, he helped out at the Hines Blind Center.

“I visit his work all the time,” said Schutter. “It's really inspiring to see all the veterans who still love this country with all they have.”
Schutter said that when the veterans heard about him wanting to join the Marines, they gave him many supporting stories, and that was another big motivation for him.

Schutter wanted to join as a basic infantryman because of all the experiences he had heard about, but instead received the military occupational specialty of security forces. He wants to move to infantry when the opportunity presents itself.

Schutter said that is goal of his is to help others around him more than himself. What inspired him was his father, who was a model of selflessness. Schutter also wants to experience the brotherhood that the Marine Corps builds.

“I really want to be deployed,” said Schutter. “I've been told that the camaraderie runs deeper then. You can rely on the guy right next to you, even while in boot camp, and I've heard that it only gets better when you're deployed.”
Article and photo by USMC Pfc. Katalynn M. Thomas
Marine Corps Recruit Depot, San Diego
Copyright 2011

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