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  • Approved for CNN

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    Posted August 20, 2014 by
    Collierville, Tennessee
    This iReport is part of an assignment:
    Salute to troops

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    Family Tradition / Youngest Son

    Over the last 60+ years the McDonels have served their country faithfully. My Father in Vietnam, me in Desert Storm, my oldest son in Iraq and now my youngest son in Afghanistan.

    Brenden was about to start his JR year of college (30 ACT and good grades) when he came home and told me that he couldnt take it any more and needed to do something "better" with his life. He wanted to be a Marine like his brother and me.

    I tried to talk him out of it. Then his recruiter refused to sign him up for the "infantry" after he learned that Brenden scored and almost perfect score on his entrance exam. He tried to force him into a "smarter" speciality. Brenden stood his ground and finally Major McDonel (me) had to step in and insist the recruiter to sign him up for the infantry.

    Sometimes a dad has to let go and trust his 21 year old son actually knows what he is doing. I couldnt be more proud of my young Marine. I sleep well at night knowing he's protecting our front lines.

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