Teacher has surprise reunion with Marine Corps student - WSIL-TV 3 Southern Illinois

Teacher has surprise reunion with Marine Corps student

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SAN DIEGO, CA -- With family members in the military, Faith Reeves had an idea of what to expect when she arrived at Marine Corps boot camp in San Diego, with a group of teachers from Arkansas, Missouri and Illinois.

But she never expected to meet up with a former student.

Not too long ago, Jay Bowman sat in Ms. Reeves English class at the Jonesboro, Arkansas High School.

"Jay was very music minded very artistic minded, but I'm not a music teacher and his mind seemed to be on music all the time, so we had to re-focus a few times and he did.  He didn't love it, but me made do," Reeves said.

It's something Bowman freely admits, "When I was in English class I never thought I would be here, no, absolutely not, absolutely not. I was probably gonna tour with a band somewhere."

Well, he does tour with a band now, just not the kind he thought. Jay discovered the Marine Corps by accident.

"I was actually on YouTube and saw a video of the MeOp program, the musician enlistment option program and I saw and I was like, I'm gonna do that."

He did. Now this Marine marches to a "different" drummer...himself.

He lost the tattoos on his fingers, along with other trappings of youth and says the Corps improved him all around. "I just want to be a better musician, just a better person in general and just see where I go," Bowman said.

His former English teacher agrees.

"You don't know how proud I am of him because he succeeded.  He's found a place where he is happy. He's found a place where he is flourishing. To me that's the greatest," Reeves said.

Because that's all she ever wanted for him, or any of her students.

"He has his future, he has his opportunities, I'm just thrilled," Reeves said.

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