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May 19, 2019

17 Photographs Captured Daily Life at US Marine Corps Boot Camp, Parris Island During Vietnam War

United States Marine Corps Recruit Training (commonly known as “boot camp”) is a 13-week program of initial training that each recruit must successfully complete in order to serve in the United States Marine Corps.

All enlisted individuals entering the Marine Corps, regardless of eventual active or reserve duty status, will undergo recruit training at one of the two Marine Corps Recruit Depots (MCRD): Parris Island, South Carolina or San Diego, California. The training and standards are identical between the two bases, though the order of some training events differs from east coast to west coast.

United States Marine Corps Physical Fitness Test Physical Fitness Test that includes a run of 3 miles in less than 28 minutes, 70 or more crunches in 2 minutes, at least 7 pull-ups for males and flexed arm hang for more than 30 seconds for females (this is to achieve the minimum score). For a maximum score, male recruits must complete the run in 18 minutes, perform 115 crunches in 2 minutes and do 20 pull ups. All recruits must meet certain height and weight requirements. The Marine Corps utilizes a 500 yard rifle qualification, while the US Army utilizes a 300 yard qualification with a much smaller target.

During the Korean War, training was shortened from ten weeks to eight, but returned afterward to ten. The Ribbon Creek incident in 1956 led to considerable scrutiny and reform in recruit training, such as an additional layer of command oversight and the distinctive campaign cover. During the early 1960s, the training period was increased to 13 weeks, including three weeks of marksmanship training at the Rifle Range. The Vietnam War-era syllabus was shortened to nine weeks and again saw infantry recruits attend follow-on training at Lejeune and Pendleton.

These amazing photographs were taken by Thomas Hoepker in Parris Island, South Carolina from the series US Marine Corps Boot Camp, 1970.

(Photos © Thomas Hoepker/Magnum Photos)



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