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Carolyn Minerich

Carolyn Minerich: "I remember walking through the student union one day when I was in college. And I thought, uh, Marine Corps...nice uniform. And the lady put her hand down in front of the, the tablet and she said, "Don't put your name down here unless you're really serious about this. Because we only have a spot for one person. And I already have 32 people in front of you on the list. And it's something inside of me clicked, and I said, "I know I'm gonna be that one." And I was. In 1974, we were the first class to train with the male counterparts at the Basic school, but, uh, in 1976, uh, the Marine Corps sent me to Admin school, and then transferred me to the Marine Corps air station helicopter at Santa Ana, and assigned me to be the Admin officer at HMT-301. So, at that point, I was the first woman Marine officer ever stationed in an aviation squadron with my male counterparts. What I left with was a sense of excellence. In everything you do. Whether you're preparing a meal, uh, dealing with your children, and at work, when we turn out a product, uh, what we want to have is a sense of excellence. My training in the Marine Corps helped me not be afraid of anything that's new or different, and I really needed that when I started Carmen Industries. Clearly I wouldn't be at this point with our business had I not had that Marine Corps training. Right now, in 2008, uh, almost all the parts that we're cutting are directly related to the Marine Corps. Uh, within months they're gonna be used by Marines in Iraq, and it gives us a great deal of pride and a sense of accomplishment to return to the Marine Corps, uh, all that the Marine Corps has given me. Once a Marine, always a Marine. How true. You, you can't say a couple of small words that convey such a strong message. Uh, and it's true. The things that I learned in the Marine Corps will carry me the rest of my life."