John L. Estrada
Date of tour
June 27, 2003 through
Sergeant Major John L. Estrada enlisted on 5 September
1973 and attended recruit training at Marine Corps Recruit
Depot, Parris Island, SC. After completing F-4 aircraft
maintenance schools at Naval Air Station (NAS), Memphis,
TN and Marine Corps Air Station (MCAS), Cherry Point,
NC, Private First Class Estrada was assigned to Marine
Fighter Attack Squadron 451 at MCAS Beaufort, SC in
December 1974, Lance Corporal Estrada was transferred
to Marine Fighter Attack Squadron 232, 1st Marine Aircraft
Wing, Iwakuni, Japan. He was meritoriously promoted to
Corporal in March, 1975.
In February, 1976, Sergeant Estrada served with Marine
Fighter Attack Training Squadron 101, MCAS Yuma, AZ. In
September, 1977, he transferred to Marine Fighter Attack
Squadron 314, MCAS El Toro, CA. Reassigned to Marine Fighter
Attach Squadron 323 in December, 1978, he deployed with
the squadron in November 1979 for 7 months aboard the
aircraft carrier USS Coral Sea to the Western Pacific
and Arabian Gulf. In June, 1980, Staff Sergeant Estrada
transferred to Marine Reserve Fighter Attack Squadron
321, Marine Aircraft Group 41, Detachment "A"
at Andrews AFB, Maryland.
In August, 1982, Staff Sergeant Estrada
was ordered to Drill Instructor Duty at Marine Corps Recruit
Depot, San Diego, CA where he served with Kilo Company,
3d Recruit Training Battalion. He was meritoriously promoted
to Gunnery Sergeant in January, 1984. In October, 1984,
Gunnery Sergeant Estrada returned to MCAS Beaufort, SC
for duty with Marine Fighter Attack Squadron 251 as the
Noncommissioned Officer in Charge of the Airframes Division.
In November, 1985, he was reassigned to Marine Fighter
Attack Squadron 451 and deployed to the Western Pacific
from January to July 1986 under the Unit Deployment Program.
From January to March 1987, Gunnery Sergeant Estrada attended
aircraft maintenance schools at Naval Air Stations Cecil
Field and Jacksonville, FL retraining as an FA-18 Hydraulic/Structural
In October, 1987, Gunnery Sergeant Estrada
returned to Drill Instructor duty, this time at MCRD
Parris Island, SC. He served as Series Chief Drill Instructor
with India Company, 3d Recruit Training Battalion and
subsequently as Standing Operations Procedures Instructor
and Drill Master at Drill Instructor School until his
promotion to First Sergeant in October, 1990.
From December 1990 to March 1995, First
Sergeant Estrada served as First Sergeant for Intelligence
Company, 3d Surveillance Reconnaissance and Intelligence
Group, Camp Hansen, Okinawa, Japan; Marine Security
Force Company, Norfolk, VA; Electronics Maintenance
Company, 1st Maintenance Battalion, 1st Force Service
Support Group, Camp Pendleton, CA; and Alpha Company,
1st Light Armored Reconnaissance Battalion, 1st Marine
Division, Camp Pendleton, CA.
From March 1995 to May 1998, Sergeant
Major Estrada served as Sergeant Major for 2d Battalion,
1st Marines, BLT 2/1, 1st Marine Division, Camp Pendleton,
CA; and deployed with the 11th Marine Expeditionary
Unit (SOC) and 15th Marine Expeditionary Unit (SOC)
to the Western Pacific and the Arabian Gulf.
In May, 1998, Sergeant Major Estrada
assumed the duties as Sergeant Major for Recruiting
Station Sacramento, CA in the 12th Marine Corps District,
Western Recruiting Region. From April 2000 to October
2001, Sergeant Major Estrada was assigned as Sergeant
Major, Recruit Training Regiment, MCRD Parris Island,
From December 2001 to May 2003, Sergeant
Major Estrada served as the Sergeant Major, 3d Marine
Aircraft Wing. During this assignment, he was forward
deployed and participated in Operation Southern Watch
and Operation Iraqi Freedom.
Major Estrada assumed his current post as the 15th Sergeant
Major of the Marine Corps on 26 June 2003.