This is the 24th in a series about graduates from Mountain Valley High School who are serving our country in the military.
A member of Mountain Valley High School’s first graduating class of 1990, Master Sergeant Louis Marin served in the Air Force for 20 years. He retired from active duty on June 1, 2011.
His years began with training at Sheppard Air Force Base in Wichita Falls, Texas. But he spent most of his time at Minot Air Force Base in Minot, ND.
MSgt Marin said, “I was trained as a B-52H aircraft general mechanic, which is known as a Crew Chief, and retired as an Aircraft Section Trainer and Flight Chief.”
The B-52 is considered a heavy bomber with a crew of five.
According to the Minot AFB website, “In a conventional conflict, the B-52 can perform strategic attack, air interdiction, offensive counter-air and maritime operations. During Desert Storm, B-52s delivered 40 percent of all the weapons dropped by coalition forces.
It is highly effective when used for ocean surveillance, and can assist the U.S. Navy in anti-ship and mine-laying operations. Two B-52s, in two hours, can monitor 140,000 square miles (364,000 square kilometers) of ocean surface.”
Like many service members, Marin joining the Air Force was going into the family business.
He explained, “I enlisted in the military to follow my father’s footsteps. He was an enlisted Air Force member in the late 1950s to early 1960s. I also wanted to travel and see the world outside of Maine, which I accomplished.”
MSgt Marin did see some of the world beyond Maine. He was deployed to Guam and Moron Air Base in Spain. He was involved in testing and modernization missions at stateside bases in southern California, Georgia and Nevada.
However traveling hasn’t stopped.
“Since retiring, I have traveled and photographed many interesting and beautiful places and people in Hawaii, Alaska, through the upper Midwest and New England,” MSgt. Marin said. “I have also worked in customer service and carpentry and construction, as well as volunteer at a local senior center.”
MSgt. Marin has set down roots for now in Massachusetts but spends time on the road to visit his 15-year-old daughter, Emily Sarah. She lives in Tehachapi, CA.
MSgt. Marin remembers those who still serve and offers this advice, “I learned many valuable things while serving my country, but I feel the best thing people can give those in uniform is assurance and love. When a young man or lady is overseas, a quick note or small gift can brighten the day. For me, getting mail was the greatest thing in the world…a post card, letter, or the small gift of a heartfelt thank you carries well through a dark day or night.”
His parents are Alfred, and Patsy Marin who live in Harrington. He has five sisters and three brothers scattered throughout New England and the U.S. Growing up in a big family made the military transition easier.
“Privacy issues being what they were in basic training in 1991, it was like having 43 brothers,” MSgt Marin explained. “But since I grew up in the woods, it was a good trade having running water and lights to share said room!”
His siblings include Kamala Marin, Lois Ellingson (who is also a Master Sergeant stationed at USAF-Offut AFB, Neb.) Bobbi Marin, David Marin, Jeanne Miller, Alfred Marin III, Carolyn Berryment, and George Walter.