MARINE CORPS AIR GROUND COMBAT CENTER TWENTYNINE PALMS, Calif. -- Becker is a former Marine who maintains a role in the communications field as a civilian. Upon being stationed in Twentynine Palms in 1999 as a radio repair technician, Becker continues to call the Morongo Basin home.
>For me, joining the Marine Corps seemed like the next step in life, something I needed to do. I had some prior service in my family, but didn’t find out until after I had joined.
>I took the aptitude test and had the option to do which ever job I wanted. Originally, I wanted to do crash fire rescue, but my dad convinced me to find something that would better set me up for my civilian career.
>After that, I wanted to sign up in a technical field to set me up for my future. I chose the communications field and ended up becoming a radio technician.
>After I reported to and completed the Marine Corps Communication-Electronics School, my first duty station was with 2nd Battalion, 7th Marine Regiment at the Combat Center.
>I did the sea-bag drag, walked all of my stuff over to my new barracks. I originally wasn’t very happy about it, because I had all my stuff ready to go somewhere new. It didn’t take long though until Twentynine Palms grew on me, and I started to enjoy it.
>For the rest of my five-year contract I stayed with 2/7. While I was with 2/7 we made two trips to Okinawa under the unit deployment program where I also had the opportunity to go to South Korea and the Philippines.
>My biggest take away from the Marine Corps is it made me a better person, without a doubt. People say that the military makes you a man, and for me it really did.
>My transition out of the Marine Corps consisted of a job opportunity as soon as I got out, working contract jobs aboard the base. I stuck around and eventually applied for a civil-service job with the G-6, and I have been there ever since.
>People ask me sometimes why I never left. You always think about going somewhere else, but I looked at it like everything I needed was here. Everything was good, I had a good job, I met my wife out here and have a wonderful family life, so I never saw any reason to leave.
>Working now as an electronics technician, I maintain radio communications for all of the training areas aboard the base, as well as the airport surveillance radar, weather systems, and other radio communications aboard the base.
>I enjoy knowing that I help keep the base ready for the Marines to train. That support role that I play is important to me. More specifically, I really enjoy my job. I love computers and technology; it is fun for me.
>Probably the most fun I have in my job is tower climbing. It is exhilarating. I’m also often flying in helicopters out to remote locations to maintain communication gear.
>Our team of eight guys are all prior Marines. The continuity we have because of that is incredible. We work extremely well together and I think a big part of that is all of us have that mentality of being a Marine.
>I have always believed in not taking the easy route. Do what you have the capacity to do, but don’t ever sell yourself short. Choose something in life that is entertaining, that you won’t get bored with, and you will do well.
>If you are thinking about joining the Marine Corps, I would say pick something that is lucrative, and something you enjoy to set yourself up for when you get out.
>Throughout my 15 years affiliated with the Combat Center, I have lived in Twentynine Palms, Joshua Tree and now currently in Yucca Valley. What keeps my family and I up here in Yucca Valley is the people and the work. Working on base is a great opportunity for me, and for other Marines transitioning.
>I would say that all three of the cities I have lived in out here are great communities to be a part of. There is a sense of belonging that I don’t know if I have ever seen anywhere else.
>First and foremost, I love spending time with my family and enjoying our home together. I’m also an avid golfer and love to ride motorcycles, all of which are great hobbies to be a part of in this area.
>The ultimate goal is to finish school and continue to work my way up in the G-6.
>I’m always trying to better myself and improve the life of my family, and that is what I like to leave with young Marines. Take advantage of everything you possibly can, do something you enjoy, and never stop bettering yourself.