Marine goes from War on Terrorism to making Marines
By Sgt. L. F. Langston
| | November 07, 2003
MARINE CORPS RECRUIT DEPOT SAN DIEGO, Calif. --
The drill field is worse than a combat environment?
According to Sgt. Jason N. Ingle, drill instructor, Platoon 2021, Company H, the answer to that question is yes. While Ingle says his combat experience during Operation Enduring Freedom was fairly tame, the uphill battle he has endured in his first four cycles on the drill field has finally begun to level out.
Ingle Joined the Marine Corps in July, 1997, and graduated from Marine Corps Recruit Depot Parris Island, S.C. He went on to become a crew chief for CH-46 helicopters.
He transferred in late 2000 to Marine Medium Helicopter Squadron 163, Marine Corps Air Station, Miramar, eventually deploying to Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom in Fall 2001.
Ingle's squadron made re-supply and troop transports off the beaches of Pakistan. He received an Air Medal for his combat designation missions, flying in excess of 20 missions.
"You go from absolute no-threat flying in and out of Miramar to manning a .50 caliber machine gun, constantly on the alert with senses heightened," said Ingle.
During his 8-month deployment, Ingle was in Afghanistan for five months but never had to engage the enemy.
"We treated it like everyday business. I definitely don't take anything for granted now," he said.
While Ingle was deployed, he reenlisted for the drill instructor option.
"The knowledge, love for the Corps, and the way drill instructors carry themselves is what caught my eye and drew me to the drill field."
Ingle was fortunate enough to have his staff noncommissioned officer in charge work with him and help prepare him for drill instructor school.
"He taught me what to expect and helped me along," said Ingle. "He encouraged me and said it would be beneficial and I would eventually take pride in turning recruits into Marines."
Preparations and encouraging support were helpful, but Ingle found himself facing reality once he arrived at Drill Instructor School.
"It was more stressful than I thought it would be," Ingle said. "School teaches the basics, as does recruit training, but it doesn't teach what to expect during that first cycle."
"Coming from the air wing and experiencing a more laid back atmosphere, the pressure to succeed, prove myself and adapt was a challenge," he said.
Now in the midst of his fourth cycle, he's proved to be a quality asset to the drill field. Earning the Band of Brothers Award and honor platoon for Platoon 2087, he continues his hard work.
"I can count on him to take control," said Staff Sgt. Don Ream, senior drill instructor, Platoon 2021, Company H. "He has good teaching techniques and is a definite mentor to the recruits."
"Sgt. Ingle is definitely one of the hardest drill instructors in the company. He has intensity and enthusiasm," said Staff Sgt. Jeff E. Price, series gunnery sergeant, Company H. "He's genuinely the most reliable, honest, and faithful drill instructor."
During this training cycle he will be awarded the Dan Daly Award for best junior drill instructor, according to Price.
The drill field has helped Ingle get back to the basics of being a Marine.
"I have become more professional," said Ingle.
Ingle has been selected for staff sergeant and hopes to be promoted by February 2004.
As a drill instructor, Ingle has learned to appreciate the effort he's put forth and the abundant respect he's earned from his fellow drill instructors.