The Mount Airy center for U.S. Marine Corporation Recruiting has a new officer, Sgt. Richard C. Orto Jr.
Orto welcomed his new position, eager to find some of — as the corps’ motto describes — “the few” and “the proud” among local young people.
”We’re trying to get in contact with pretty much all of the local high school seniors,” said Orto. The sergeant added that the Marine Corps is equally interested in signing high school juniors, as they can enlist up to one year prior to their graduation date.
“So, pretty much, as soon as you finish your junior year,” said Orto, “you can start paperwork to become a U.S. Marine in the future.”
After all, Orto believes joining the Marine Corps can greatly benefit young people, particularly due to its ability to help them reach their desired objectives.
“We’re looking for a lot of the college hopefuls within the area,” he continued, “and just trying to get a feel for them, see what their goals are in life. We want to see some ways the Marine Corps can actually assist them in achieving those goals.”
For the recruitment position, Orto replaced Sgt. Travis C. Hubert, who successfully completed his recruiting tour of 36 months. At this time, Hubert is back in the Marine Corps fleet.
Born and raised in Youngstown, Ohio, Orto has served in the Marine Corps nearly seven years. Originally, he worked as a ground support equipment mechanic, performing maintenance on various aircraft. Orto did one tour in Japan for “about six or seven months,” before returning to the states for five months. Afterward, he was sent to Afghanistan for a seven-month tour.
Eager to continue serving the country, Orto re-enlisted in the Marines, changing his job to CH-53 helicopter mechanic in about 2010. Last summer, he took on a second tour in Afghanistan. Upon returning home, Orto was pulled for recruiting duty, training in San Diego, Calif.
Orto expressed optimism in the move to Mount Airy, believing some of town’s best and brightest will make excellent marines. Furthermore, he mentioned that the amount of recent applicants is solid, particularly as recruitment efforts are being pulled back somewhat.
“We’re always, of course, looking for highly-qualified individuals, especially right now. The smarter the applicant, the better,” said Orto. “We’re definitely looking for those who aren’t necessarily middle-of-the-line guys.
“But everybody we can get, we’re going to spend the time with them,” he explained. “We’re going to help them as much as we possibly can throughout the process.”
Reach Josh Armstrong at 719-1921 or email@example.com.