Family, military sacrifice inspires recruit to give 100 percent

Family, military sacrifice inspires recruit to give 100 percent

Recruit Trajon L. Griffis, guide, Platoon 2161, Hotel Company, 2nd Recruit Training Battalion, awaits the command from his drill instructor during platoon drill aboard Marine Corps Recruit Depot San Diego June 2. Griffis is currently the platoon's guide and intends on keeping that roll so he can motivate his fellow recruits. Photo by Sgt Walter D. Merino II.

MARINE CORPS RECRUIT DEPOT SAN DIEGO (June 6, 2014) - He never knew his mother, but for Recruit Trajon L. Griffis, guide, Platoon 2161, Hotel Company, 2nd Recruit Training Battalion, his father was more than enough.

"I have a twin brother and twin sisters and we've never known our mom," said Griffis. "I'm inspired by my father for being able to do so much."

Griffis explained he admires his father for serving more than 20 years in the Navy, deploying multiple times and providing for four children every step of the way.

He said he believes the military instilled strength in his father that aided him throughout his life and wanted to gain the strength too.

However, he is not only following in the footsteps of his father, but in his grandfather's as well, who served in the Navy and Army.

"His grandfather served, I'm currently serving and I'm glad he's carrying on the tradition. I'm very proud of him," said his father Trajon L. Griffis Senior.

Although his father is serving in the Navy, Griffis said he wanted to take the challenge of becoming one of the few and join the Marines instead.

"I've always liked the way Marines carry themselves and the respect they give and receive from their superiors," Griffis said.

Griffis is now on day 13 of recruit training and says the hardest part has been being away from his twin, whom he said he spent all his time with prior to recruit training.

"Right now is the longest I've been away from him," said the San Diego native. "The first couple of weeks were hard."

Despite the emotional strain from being separated from his father and twin, Griffis took it upon himself to take the position of platoon guide and leader.

"I was the only one to volunteer," said Griffis.

The first day he met his drill instructors, Griffis had an experience unlike any of his fellow recruits. He recognized two of his drill instructors, as neighbors who live within two blocks of his home. Griffis attended high school with the daughter of his drill instructor, GySgt Robert S. Horn.

"I know his daughter. I played basketball with her," said Griffis.

He explained knowing some of his drill instructors' family members made him realize they too are missing their families, and it made him want to work even harder for them.

"Knowing they're missing their families just like I'm missing my family motivates me to give them 100 percent. They're sacrificing their time with their families to train us."

On the first day of training, Horn told his recruits he wanted 100 percent from them, because he gives 100 percent to them and is away from his family just like they are.

"I knew the speech probably hit him a little more," said Horn. "But we all sacrifice something; whether it's kids or a wife. You have to give up some of your pleasures in life to achieve your goals."

As recruit training continues, Griffis said he plans on keeping the position of guide so he can continue to motivate his fellow recruits to constantly give maximum effort.

"I'm never going to give less than 100 percent and I'm never going to ask for anything less from the platoon because I know what the drill instructors are sacrificing," said Griffis. is the official website of the United States Marine Corps and is maintained by the Marine Corps' Division of Public Affairs.