“I was a product of my environment, and I knew I didn’t want that,” Marine Staff Sgt. Jose Mendez said to members of the San Joaquin Regional Conservation Corps (SJRCC) on March 18.
Mendez offered words of encouragement and advice to the 30 Corpsmembers who listened to his story. Not too long ago, Mendez was in a major vehicle accident that landed him in the hospital for several months, and he found it difficult to move forward.
Some of the Corpsmembers can relate. Recently a Corpsmember was in a very similar accident.
“It’s the drive you find inside you to make a better you,” Mendez said.
Mendez has been with the Marine Corps for 14 years and currently works as a utilities engineer. He is also a recruiter for the Marines in Redding, Calif.
The Marines staff sergeant told the Corpsmembers that they need to remain positive and stay focused on moving forward and making a better life for themselves.
“Positivity breeds positivity,” he said.
The SJRCC serves local youth and young adults, ages 18 to 25, in San Joaquin County. On average SJRCC serves 51 participants annually. The goal of SJRCC is to provide valuable career and vocational training and the opportunity for Corpsmembers to transform and improve their lives. In doing so, it gives young men and women the courage and the skills to continue their life on a positive path.