As part of an article featuring a veteran adventure therapy organization, SOFREP was fortunate to speak with retired Force Recon Marine Staff Sergeant Jonathon Blank about his background and experiences working with Mission Volant.

Tell us a little bit about your military background

I was born in Wichita, KS.  I enlisted in the Marine Corps in May of 2005, and underwent recruit training a year later at 1st Recruit Training Battalion, Alpha Company, Marine Corps Recruit Depot, San Diego, Ca.  In November of 2006, I completed Infantry Training Battalion at Camp Pendleton, Ca.

After graduating the Basic Reconnaissance Course in 2007, I reported to 3rd Plt, Delta Co, 1st Reconnaissance Bn.  I was put into training in deep reconnaissance and direct action, and served in billets of point man, slack man, and assistant radio operator.   In June of 2007, I attended the US Army Airborne course and in August 2007 I attended the US Naval SERE course before going back to Delta Co, 1st Recon Bn.  In January of 2008, as a Corporal, I went to Kuwait in support of the 1st MEF in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom.  The main focus was training and demonstration of the deployment capabilities of Delta Co.  In July of 2008 Delta Co. was redesignated Force Reconnaissance Co, I MEF and I was chosen to remain within the new company and continue the work of rebuilding Force Reconnaissance. During this time, I attended training in Mountain Warfare, the Joint Fires Observer Course, Machine Gun Trainer Course, and 1st SOTG’s Dynamic Assault Course.