This is one of the more gratifying moments of being out front in the military’s overwhelmingly misunderstood atheist community. Right from the get go, this recruit is a shit-kicker, like Megan Hurwitt (who just graduated from boot camp on her birthday!)
Hi, it’s the atheist Marine recruit that you helped out a few months ago. I know that you’re a busy man, but I just wanted to give you a quick update on how I’m doing.
This afternoon I took the oath and formally enlisted in the Marine Corps. My package still says “Atheist” – I checked! I didn’t say “so help me God” when I swore in – the Captain who administered the oath was very polite and clear in the briefing before that we didn’t have to.
Since I’m traveling from the west coast to Parris Island on the east coast, I spend the night in a hotel and get up very early tomorrow morning to catch my plane. I was designated the group leader, so I get to make sure that all four female Marine recruits shipping with me make it to the east coast. Next goal is to make sure my dog tags say “Atheist” and to pass the initial strength test so I can get picked up and start boot camp. I’m equally excited and scared, but I am ready for this.
Thank you again for your help and support, not just for me but for the online atheist community. As someone going into the military, I find your blog to be not just a great informational resource, but a source of comfort. It helps to know I’m not alone.
I have to give up email access in a few hours until I graduate boot camp, so if you send a reply (I’m not expecting one) I may not see it. Good luck with recruiting duty, and I’ll send you a picture of my dog tags as soon as I’m able, which won’t be for 13 weeks at the earliest.