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Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Hometown News: Richard Payne

Marine Corps Pfc. Richard D. Payne, a 2007 graduate of Greenville High School, Greenville, recently completed 12 weeks of basic training at Marine Corps Recruit Depot, Parris Island, S. C. designed to challenge new Marine recruits both physically and mentally.

Payne and fellow recruits began their training at 5 a. m., by running three miles and performing calisthenics. In addition to the physical conditioning program, Payne spent numerous hours in classroom and field assignments which included learning first aid, uniform regulations, combat water survival, marksmanship, hand-to-hand combat and assorted weapons training. They performed close order drill and operated as a small infantry unit during field training.

Payne and other recruits also received instruction on the Marine Corps' core values--honor, courage and commitment, and what the core values mean in guiding personal and professional conduct.

Payne and fellow recruits ended the training phase with The Crucible, a 54-hour, team evolution culminating in an emotional ceremony in which recruits are presented the Marine Corps emblem, and addressed as "Marines" for the first time in their careers.

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I grew up in the military. Mom was an Air Force nurse for a few years, dad was a navigator on B-52s, among other things. One grandfather served in World War II, uncle is retired Navy, other grandfather and great-uncle served in Korea and a cousin is currently serving in the Marine Corps. Currently, I'm the military reporter for the Great Falls Tribune in Montana. Previously, 


As a military kids, we moved all over. As an adult, I've traveled all over and moved for work. But now, I'm putting down roots in Montana with my boyfriend. We just bought a house and are slowly but surely making it our home. We have more land that we know what to do with at the moment. Now we're getting a garden started, tearing down walls and having loads of fun at what we call the Homestead.

In a part life, I did PR for the guy who built the Vietnam Veterans Memorial on the National Mall, social media for the National Museum of Health and Medicine, before that, edited two military technology magazines for a publishing group in the DC area and before that, I was the military reporter (among other things) at the Montgomery Advertiser, covering Maxwell Air Force Base, the Alabama National Guard, veterans and anything else military related in the area. And in between all of that, I leave town, preferably the country, whenever possible. It all started when I spent a semester in New Zealand.

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