Today we celebrate all of the brave service individuals who fought for our country. Veterans, we thank you for your service.
With today being Veteran’s Day and yesterday being the 245th birthday of the United States Marine Corps, we especially want to thank our own Jason Cochran (Bellese Information Technology Manager) for his six years of service in the USMC.
Cochran said of his time in the service, “Learning to protect the person next to you and trust that he/she will do the same for you is pretty much the definition of the Marines. Semper Fidelis, meaning ‘Always Faithful.’”
He joined the service right after the first war in Iraq started. After 13 weeks in boot camp and another four weeks in Marine combat training, he was off to Twenty Nine Palms, California, for training in communications. Jason became a communication center operator. The Marines prepared for war by training in desert warfare. He fully expected to be deployed in Iraq, but the main fighting ended rather quickly.
“It was the first time I’d seen a desert and really tall mountains! After my year in comms training I was stationed at Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, and other than some small deployments, stayed there for much of my time. About this time the internet started making its way more and more into everyday life. The Marine Corps realized its benefits pretty quickly and started to update some of the more antiquated equipment that we were using with faster computers, secure servers and more powerful encryption devices. It was then that I started learning more about building computers, servers and networks. Setting up a fully encrypted network overnight, in the rain, in the middle of a simulated war in the North Carolina forests, with 200 desktop computers, 20 servers and all accessories, and power gave me confidence in my abilities. That experience keeps me grounded even today when things get tough. Being in an air conditioned office with access to beverages and a bathroom makes things much easier to deal with!”
Cochran says during his time in the Marines he learned discipline, hard work and loyalty, as well as how to field strip a rifle or hardened laptop. Even though he’s been out for some time, he still looks back on those days with pride, not only in himself but in the country that he gave six years of his life to, “Protecting the rights of Americans has always meant a lot to me. The fact that I was a part of something still makes me proud. I’m thankful that I’m still able to help the citizens of our country through the work that we are doing at Bellese to improve healthcare for millions of Americans.”
Thank you for your service, Jason!