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Gung-Ho Lance Corporal William Miller
by U.S. Marine Corps 1st Lt. Zachary Bodner
October 30, 2021

The US Marine Corps prides itself on its warrior scholar mindset ... demanding Marines engage the enemy with their mind and body.

Marines complete rigorous courses to become effective leaders, from Marine Corps Mixed Martial Arts to Professional Military Education such as Corporals Course.

The Corporals Course is roughly a two-week professional military education course where Marines build upon a solid foundation of leadership to serve better those they lead by enhancing their knowledge and proficiency with...

  • Over 20 hours of physical training

  • 10 hours of drill and ceremonies practice

  • 50 hours of academic instruction and 30 hours of leadership and development.

Also, Junior non-commissioned officers (NCO) and Marines learn the strict expectations demanded of them as leaders and fill theirj leadership toolbox with enterprise values and experience-based lessons.

Marine Fighter Attack Squadron (VMFA) 211 is currently deployed aboard Her Majesty’s Ship (HMS) Queen Elizabeth as part of the United Kingdom’s (UK) Carrier Strike Group 21. The high-visibility deployment which began last April has seen The Wake Island Avengers operate alongside dozens of partners and allies from the North Sea to the South China Sea.

Understanding the positive impact Corporals Course has on the NCO Corps and an individual Marines growth and promotability, VMFA-211 has run five-course iterations while deployed. The last class to graduate, 1-22, included five Royal Navy Sailors who volunteered for the course to learn Marine Corps leadership traits.

The class Gung-Ho award recipient was Lance Corporal William Miller of Boston, Massachusetts. The Gung-Ho award determined by the members of Corporals Course and is given to the Marine who best possesses the intellectual honesty and moral courage to put aside self-interest for the good of their unit, which demonstrates the tenacity and self-discipline in keeping with what is known as the Avenger spirit and the gung-ho attitude of the Marine warrior.

October 13, 2021 - U.S. Marine Corps Lance Corporal William Miller (left) stands next to Sergeant Major John Beckett after receiving the Corporals Course 1-22 Gung-Ho award. Miller was voted Gung-Ho recipient because the Marines of 1-22 for being the best possessed with intellectual honesty and moral courage to put aside self-interest for the good of his unit. He also demonstrated the tenacity and self-discipline in keeping with what is known as the avenger spirit and the gung ho attitude of the Marine warrior. (Image created by USA Patriotism! from U.S. Marine Corps photo by 1st Lt. Zachary Bodner.)
October 13, 2021 - U.S. Marine Corps Lance Corporal William Miller (left) stands next to Sergeant Major John Beckett after receiving the Corporals Course 1-22 Gung-Ho award. Miller was voted Gung-Ho recipient because the Marines of 1-22 for being the best possessed with intellectual honesty and moral courage to put aside self-interest for the good of his unit. He also demonstrated the tenacity and self-discipline in keeping with what is known as the avenger spirit and the gung ho attitude of the Marine warrior. (Image created by USA Patriotism! from U.S. Marine Corps photo by 1st Lt. Zachary Bodner.)

“It is motivating, and it says a lot about a Lance Corporal coming to Corporals Course,” said SgtMaj John Beckett, VMFA-211 Sergeant Major, and Corporals Course Director. “Miller has been Marine of the Quarter, our meritorious Corporal nominee, and now our Gung-Ho award winner. He is an outstanding Marine.”

Miller has been an Avenger since Oct 2019 and is a 6288 Fixed-Wing Aircraft Safety Equipment Mechanic. He is currently serving as a Collateral Duty Inspector for the Aviation Life Support Systems Division, Seats Shop. In that role, he ensures compliance with guidelines and procedures during maintenance on the F-35 ejection seat and life support systems.

“Leading Corporals was a challenge, but I felt ready because I knew by leading from the front, setting the example, and doing the right thing, I couldn’t go wrong,” said Miller. “Being awarded Gung-Ho is motivating for me personally because it means I was motivating the Marines to the right and left of me.”

Marine Fighter Attack Squadron 211 and USS The Sullivans (DDG 68) are humbled and proud to continue the special relationship with the United Kingdom through the deployment of Carrier Strike Group 21. Our interoperability with the United Kingdom, The Netherlands, and additional international allies will preserve our collective military advantage and reinforce rules-based international order.

The United States and United Kingdom’s forward-deployed forces remain ready to respond to crises globally as a combined maritime force – we stand together.

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