America's Military

Pfc. Marquis Norman

Unit: 508th Transportation Company, 266th Quartermaster Battalion

Military occupational specialty: 88M – motor transport operator

Age: 20

Hometown: Norfolk

Time in service: 18 months

Personality strengths: “I’m very outgoing, motivated, somewhat optimistic and determined.”

Personality weaknesses: “I tend to be friendly, but sometimes I feel like I shouldn’t be too friendly or open with everyone.”

Pastimes: “Sleeping or talking to my friends.”

Worst fear: “Dying.”

Your dream car: “A brand new Lexus GS 350.”

 One person you admire: “My mother. My dad wasn’t in the picture much; he got locked up so my mother took on all the responsibilities of raising three boys. She struggled but made it through.”

The celebrity or historical figure you would like to meet: “(The actress) Taraji P. Henson – she’s a good actress, and I can identify with her determination and story of struggle.”

If you won the lottery … “I’d make sure my mom is taken care of and give back in some way.”

Your ideal life: “I’d be married with a little girl and live in a nice house in the countryside.”

Talk about your upbringing: “I was always a quiet kid growing up; two brothers and a little sister. I’m a twin (the youngest by three seconds). I kind of fit the description of the older sibling because of my ambition.”

If you could do anything, anywhere right now, what and where would that be? “I would actually go back in time – before my mother was pregnant with me and my brother. She was supposed to travel to Germany with my uncle and live there, but it never happened because she had us. It was a dream of hers. She wasn’t ready to have us. My dad convinced her to not give us up for adoption. I would give her that chance to live out her dream.”

One life-changing moment: “Basic training. Before I joined the military, I was never really that close with my family. In basic, I didn’t eat at all for the first week because I was depressed a little bit, being away from home, etc. It kind of taught me that no matter where you go, keep your family and loved ones close.”

Why you joined the Army: “It was never my goal to come into the Army. I joined with a close friend I graduated with; we’ve been to hell and back. At the end of the day, we made it through high school and laid out our plans to join another branch of the military. She didn’t pass the physical. I had already completed the entrance requirements and made the choice to join the Army. I always saw myself in uniform and always wanted to travel.”

Some of the places you’d like to travel: “Germany, Australia, Egypt and Puerto Rico.”

Which of the Army Values – loyalty, duty, respect, selfless service, honor, integrity and personal courage – do you identify with the most: “Loyalty.”

Why you chose your MOS: “I wanted to be a medic, but I didn’t have that option. I was in such a rush to join. I chose what was available at that time.”

What you like about being a motor transport operator: “Driving provides a measure of freedom, and it gives me a lot of independence.”

What it means to wear the uniform: “It isn’t about the paycheck; it’s pride, mostly. Not everyone can wear the uniform – only 1 percent of the population.”

Best thing about the Army: “Meeting people.”

Worst thing about the Army: “The fact you can meet people and have to part ways with them.”

Where you see yourself in five years: “I want to at least have a degree in psychology.”