Kathleen Creel Interview, November 25, 2019


Kathleen Creel


Ashley Slack



Download Audio Interview (31.9 MB)

Download Transcript of Kathleen Creel interview (253 KB)


Kathleen Creel describes serving in the U.S. Marine Corps from 1980 to 1993. She talks about coming from a military family, which influenced her decision to join the Marines. Creel discusses the importance of basic training as well as the necessity of commanding officers and drill sergeants to be hard on their troops, and how those things are not understood by civilians. She recalls her non-commissioned officer [NCO] training at Quantico, Virginia, where she learned management and leadership skills. She talks about the value of Marine Corps training, noting that unlike college, it requires immediate application. She also recalls sending the troops she oversaw overseas during the Gulf War, and the concern she felt wondering if she had prepared them thoroughly for that experience. She clarifies that that anxiety wasn’t based on emotion, but rather concern over whether she did her duty. Throughout the interview, Creel reiterates how proud she is to be a Marine, while acknowledging her struggle to reintegrate into civilian life. She concludes by noting that she and many other Marines feel alone once they leave active duty because being a Marine means being in the Marine Corps.


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Document Type

Oral History


U.S. Military; U.S. Marine Corps; Marine bases; Quantico, Virginia; Non-commissioned officer [NCO]; Total quality management; Leadership; Military leadership; Military cooks; Desert Storm; Gulf War (1990-1991); Food service management; Camp Lejuene, North Carolina; Esprit des corps; Reintegration; Civilian life

Original Date


Time Period

Twentieth century

Geographic Coverage

Hawaii; Virginia; North Carolina



Original Collection

The Veteran’s Experience Oral History Project, OH 472

Holding Institution

University of Montana. Mansfield Library. Archives and Special Collections

Digital Publisher

University of Montana--Missoula. Mansfield Library

Rights Statement

In Copyright

Rights Holder

Copyright to this collection is held by the interview participants and by the Maureen and Mike Mansfield Library, University of Montana-Missoula. Permission may be required for use. For further information please contact Archives and Special Collections at the University of Montana, Mansfield Library.

Oral History Number

OH 472-011

Media Type

Sound; Text

Original Format

1 MP3 (00:34:11): digital + 1 transcript (9 pp.: 28 cm.)

Digital Format

audio/mp3; application/pdf

Run Time

00:34:11 minutes

Local Filename

OH_472_011.mp3; OH_472_011.pdf

Kathleen Creel Interview, November 25, 2019