For simplicity's sake, the Wikipedia description (with some correction) is:
The Crucible is the final test in recruit training, and represents the culmination of all of the skills and knowledge a Marine should possess. Designed in 1996 to emphasize the importance of teamwork in overcoming adversity, the Crucible is a rigorous 54-hour field training exercise demanding the application of everything a recruit has learned until that point in recruit training, and includes a total of 48 miles of marching. It simulates typical combat situations with strenuous testing, hardship, and the deprivation of food and sleep. A recruit is given three MREs (= Meal Ready-to-Eat, a self-contained, individual field ration) and four to eight hours of sleep through the entire 54-hour event.
On the final day of the Crucible, recruits are awoken and begin their final march. Following this is the Eagle, Globe, and Anchor ceremony, where the recruits receive the eponymous emblem, and thereby cease to be recruits, finally becoming Marines. Immediately following this, recruits are offered the "Warrior's Breakfast", including steak, eggs, potatoes, fruits/vegies, etc. where they are permitted to eat as much as they like, even of previously forbidden foods, such as ice cream.
That being said, my baby-girl, her platoon The Mighty 4029, along with several other platoons at MCRD PI (Marine Corps Recruit Depot, Parris Island) and the 1029 and 1030 and others at MCRD SD (San Diego) began their Crucible at 0400 this morning. Approximately 48 hours from right NOW, they will be crossing their finish line and will become UNITED STATES MARINES.
Now, I am a proud Mama anyway and have encouraged and supported both of our daughters in everything they've wanted, tried, attempted and succeeded to do. I was at every softball game (even coached for several years), Kung Fu practice and tournament, dance and danceline rehearsal and recital/performance for the last 21 years. I've cheered. I've cried. I've yelled. I've even booed a couple of times.....
BUT I HAVE NEVER BEEN AS PROUD OF ANYONE AS I AM OF ANNE JOYCE COOPER RIGHT NOW!!!
My little girl, all of 5'2", 100lbs soaking wet!, has made it her mission to serve in the United States Armed Forces since she was 8!!! And she chose the Marines and the Marines chose her 14 months ago. She wanted to be an MP, but she's a little too short (don't tell the Marines that she's already got a Black Belt in Kung Fu and could probably whoop her DIs arse.....they only wanna know how tall she isn't...) so she's happy that she is going to be an aviation mechanic cuz she LOVES MOTORS!!! Yeah, THAT'S MY LITTLE GIRL!!! All frilly and primpy and soft....NOT!!!
So, please take a minute, in the next 48 hours, to say a little prayer for the females of the 4029 and the males of the 1029 and 1030 (her buddies from RSS BV) and ALL of the other recruits who are beating The Crucible to become one of:
"The Few, The Proud"(males) "The Fewer, The Prouder"(females) "The United States Marine Corps.
Thank you from one of:
"The Fewest, The Proudest" USMC MOM!!!