Semper Fro: Just how much hair can you show up to Marine Corps boot camp with?

Mandatory Fun

As much as stepping on the yellow footprints is a hallowed Marine Corps tradition, there's another rite of passage that folks outside the military — like soon-to-be Marine recruits — aren't always aware of. I'm of course talking about the hair-clipper carnage that comes right after you arrive at recruit training.


The barbers at boot camp don't so much cut your hair as they do shear you like sheep, rushing countless recruits through those chairs in a matter of minutes, leaving behind only quietly muttered curse words, a couple of scraped scalps, and the remnants of once magnificent hairdos.

That was the case for Kyle Silva, who recently arrived at Parris Island, South Carolina, and may have realized that, no, his recruiter wasn't lying when he said he couldn't have an afro in the Marine Corps. Or more than likely, he just figured they'd cut it off anyway, so why not just enjoy the 'do those last few days before shipping out? He certainly wouldn't be the first (see: Mullet Recruit).

The photos of Silva, who arrived at Parris Island on July 16 and will be assigned to Mike Company 3rd Recruit Training Battalion, were shot by Lance Cpl. Christopher McMurry and Lance Cpl. Ryan Hageali.

If you were wondering just how much hair you can show up with at Recruit Training: The answer is as much as you want. They're not going to let you keep it, though.

Before:

(U.S. Marine Corps/Lance Cpl. Ryan Hagaeli)

It begins:

(U.S. Marine Corps/Lance Cpl. Ryan Hagaeli)

Is there a guy under there?

(U.S. Marine Corps/Lance Cpl. Christopher McMurry)

The face we've all made when we start to wonder if this was a mistake:

(U.S. Marine Corps/Lance Cpl. Ryan Hagaeli)

You just know a Marine grabbed him and made him pose for this:

(U.S. Marine Corps/Lance Cpl. Ryan Hagaeli)


(Department of Defense)

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