BRYAN, Texas — On this day, we’re honoring veterans and their service to our country.
One young man right here in the Brazos Valley has not only served as a U.S. Marine but is now helping his community in more ways than one through nursing.
He’s dedicating his life to serving others. In the fall of 2011, Donald Boston would enroll in Texas A&M to later find out he wanted to enroll in the U.S. Marines.
By the spring of 2012, he was enlisted in boot camp in San Diego, California.
“My last duty station was actually a full circle moment for me,” says Donald Boston III, a nursing student. “I was a range coach for recruits that came through Bootcamp. I would have 12 to 15 recruits and I would teach them for a whole week how to shoot the rifle safely and effectively and we were graded on their performance, but I was on the same range that I shot at in bootcamp five years ago.”
Boston chose the specialty of infantry and mortarman.
He was selected for presidential security detail in bootcamp where he met former president, Barack Obama.
Coming from a family history of service, his grandfather served in the Marines in the 1940s, and later followed Boston’s uncle and brother.
“Since I’ve been in it, I feel like my grandparents' influence has meant more to me because I also have earned the title he had and that my uncle has and then when I became a Marine, I felt connected to that lineage, and it was actually a really proud history to be the grandson of one of the first black Marines,” says Boston.
Boston’s grandmother, Gladys Baker was also honored for helping make airplane machinery during World War II.
During deployment, Boston found his love for nursing working at an assisted living facility.
“Taking them to dinner, involving the in activities, just spending time with them made a huge difference to these older people, some who don’t even have families that come visit them, or they can’t visit them so that’s when I was like, 'I want to do more for them, so I need to go to school and learn how to do more for them,” says Boston.
Blinn nursing program director, Dr. Karla Ross says recognizes how his history prepared him for this.
“People like Boston are few and far between just because of his background in the military,” says Dr. Karla Ross, associate degree nursing program director. “He’s had a lot of experiences and it’s rare that you get someone that’s kind of a background.”
Boston says much of his success is owed to his wife, as they met in nursing school.
“She’s been like my biggest fan, biggest supporter,” says Boston. “I was already on this path before her, but I definitely know that I would not have made it here as successfully as I have without her support and just her being there, being herself.”
As Boston finishes up his nursing degree at Texas A&M, a new nursing role awaits him in Colorado as he prepares to become a certified registered nurse anesthetist.