by Mark A. Wright, HMC(SS) USN, 2003
I am a navy corpsman. I possess the stamina and enthusiasm of youth and the wisdom and experience of an old man.
I am 3 parts doctor, 1 part nurse, 2 parts marine, 1 part yeoman and 3 parts mom, yet I am 100% sailor.
I am unemployable to the civilian world in my given profession yet have been the very life line for countless marines, soldiers and sailors since 1778.
I have carried marines from the battle field … and have ben carried reverently myself by marines who mourned my passing like that of a brother or sister.
I am young. I am old. brave, scared and scarred. my title has changed over the years: loblolly boy, surgeons stewart, pharmacist mate, hospital corpsman, IDC, yet with all the changes I am still simply know as “doc”.
I have celebrated peace; yet felt the sting of war on the seas, in jungles, in foreign cities, in Washington D.C. and on beaches of every shade of sand… white, tan, coral and black.
I have raised hell on liberty; hope in the midst of battle …. and Old Glory on Iwo Jima.
I have removed appendixes on submarines and limbs in the midst of battle and many other procedures far above and beyond what I am expected to do by the normal practice of medicine because it had to be done in order to save the life of a marine or sailor in battle or under the ice, far from a doctors care.
I have ignored my own wounds to the point of death in order to stay at my station treating the wounded of my nations navy, marine corp, army and air force.
I have the highest number of medal of honors of any corp in the Navy …..most of them presented to my wife, child or mother because I was already in heaven at the time.
I am proud to know in my heart that every marine who has ever fought and every sailor who has gone to sea on ships owe their very lives to those they simply, yet respectfully know as “doc.”