In doing what we ought we deserve no praise,
because it is our duty.
— Saint Augustine 

Bing West was born to be a Marine. When he was just two years old, his two uncles were in the Marine Corps and fought on Guadalcanal. Later, his family allowed a baseball team of Marines to use the attic of their Dorchester, Massachusetts home as a kind of clubhouse. 

There they’d be able to talk among themselves about things they’d never have been able to say to their families. Bing’s mother thought they’d make great babysitters.

By the time Bing was seven years old, he knew he’d be a Marine.