Still kicking

It's been a while since I last posted and I figured I would jump in and say a few words, starting on what has been going on. I have been in Japan on a student visa for one and a half years now studying the language in order to work as a translator for the Marine Corps out in the islands of Okinawa. I flirted a lot with the whole concept of just going straight to the legion before I even started college here, I decided that since I already signed up for school and already paid the tuition that I should not quit something before it was even started.

In December of last year I was called in for a medical test from my last military branch (USMC) and I thought to myself, why don't I just go back in. While still in Japan on my student visa this wasn't the easiest thing, and trying to communicate with the military that I want my medical examination to be done on one of the military bases out here was like yelling at a wall telling it to move. I was given a plane ticket from the military and flown out from Fukuoka to Yokohama. I arrived late on a Thursday night in the beginning of December and checked into the cheapest hotel I could find near the base. The medical testing took place the next day in the morning was about half a day long. Simple stuff from checking my joints all the way to psychiatric tests to see how I have been dealing with my deployments.

Unfortunately I flew out the same day the tests were finished and did not have any time to talk to the recruiters there. They typically deal with the sons and daughters of military parents, not too many people trying to return to active duty while on a student visa in Japan, so I didn't know if they would have been able to do much for me anyways. When I got back to my cozy closet sized apartment I started calling recruiters here in Japan and back in my home state of NY. Unfortunately it seems like once you get out of the military it is even harder to get back in compared to someone fresh off the street. I was given about 3 rejections before I just decided it was time to fulfill my dreams of the Legion.

With my 2 year degree in foreign language coming to an end soon (5 months) and my license exam coming even sooner (December 12th) I have been exploring my option on what to do next even more. I could apply for a career in translation in Okinawa or pursue the FFL since it has been on my mind since what seems like forever (2012). Once I hit my year and a half mark classwork has taken a huge dive into a more relaxed pace, I started becoming bored after the first week and decided to start taking online classes.

I decided to take an associates course in EOD, it's always been one thing that has interested me, and my fun memories of working a minesweeper in Afghan should help a bit. With online courses I can get my degree in 1 year when compared to 2 years in a brick and mortar school. I started doing some research and found a French language school near my home in New York and decided to take 6 months of classes there while finishing up my EOD degree. My current plan is to finish my degree in language and work on my EOD degree. After I return to NY in 5 months I'll start upping my training even more and start studying French. I should have both my degrees in October of 2019 (hopefully) and on my way to the Legion after that.

I apologize for the massive post, Best regards.
Thank you so much for your very interesting account. Welcome back and keep us up to speed with your further activities.
Good luck.

Joseph Cosgrove

Thanks for keeping us informed. The fact that you are learning Japanese, may be in your favor as the legion likes to have their interpreters. You'll likely be able to use your language skills during the legion with other (Jap) legionnaires. keep up the fitness and whatever you deiced good luck.


Active Member
When I recruited from 1998 to 2001 I did have 1 Marine that had gotten out as a Lance Corporal and he spent about 3 years out of the Corps. I was able to bring him back into the Corps but it was not an easy route. 1st he had to meet the standards, the real standards, not the standards for initial recruits. 2nd he had to pass a Physical Fitness Test, again the real PFT not the Initial Strength Test to send a recruit to Boot Camp.

Retreads like this are at a disadvantage often they do not return as their same rank and they are out of sync with the normal promotion cycles windows.

Good luck

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