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Brandon O’Brien sets the record straight on returning to the military

Early today we passed along a report from about Brandon O’Brien, a Marine turned college wide receiver who had decided to re-enlist rather than pursue a place in the NFL. The report portrayed O’Brien as having been motivated by the Boston Marathon bombing.

But O’Brien says that’s not right.

Those reports are absolutely false,” O’Brien told “First off, me deciding to go back into the military has nothing to do with the Boston bombings and, furthermore, I have not yet reenlisted in the Marines.”

Instead, O’Brien says he decided two weeks ago, after returning home from an intensive training program with some other former college players who are hoping to get drafted by the NFL next week, that pro football wasn’t in the cards for him. O’Brien decided then that returning to the military is the right path for him.

“I did some soul searching and realized that I was put here to help people and not play professional football. The military is a passion of mine and it is something I hold close to my heart and love to be a part of,” O’Brien said.

The “absolutely false” reports O’Brien refers to had been portraying him as a patriotic hero for responding to the attack in Boston by wanting to serve his country. If O’Brien wanted public acclaim, the easy thing would have been to stay quiet. It’s to O’Brien’s credit that he wanted to set the record straight.

Photo via Beyond Sports Network.

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25 Responses to “Brandon O’Brien sets the record straight on returning to the military”
  1. larryboodry says: Apr 17, 2013 6:33 PM

    Dude’s a class act all the way.

  2. 5150cd says: Apr 17, 2013 6:41 PM

    As someone from Havre, MT and graduated from MSU-N, let me just say that I’m damn proud he played for us and it was an honor to watch him play. The guy was a beast!

  3. flickaboogie says: Apr 17, 2013 7:01 PM

    Good Luck to you Marine, Semper Fi .

  4. chawk12thman says: Apr 17, 2013 7:05 PM

    I guess it isn’t the movie script it was first reported as, but I would still want to pass along my appreciation for his service. In fact, cudos to all the service personnel who allow us to have the life we lead. Thank you.

  5. dbones750 says: Apr 17, 2013 7:13 PM

    He was the hero we needed, not he hero we deserved

  6. nomoreseasontix says: Apr 17, 2013 7:22 PM

    It didn’t sound right anyway.
    Re- enlisting isn’t something you do in a few minutes time, like getting a cup of coffee.
    It’s a process that takes time.

  7. canjura says: Apr 17, 2013 7:35 PM

    Am I the only one who just gained MORE respect for setting the record straight? He could have been looked at in the same light as Pat Tillman, but chose he’d be an honest human being.

  8. seatownfaithful says: Apr 17, 2013 7:46 PM

    That is the definition of a good, honest, real dude.

  9. thereisalwaysnextyear says: Apr 17, 2013 7:46 PM

    It’s not heroic, but it is rare. Telling the truth when it doesn’t benefit you is a very rare trait in today’s World. My definition of truth is just that. Telling it the way it is regardless of how it makes you or anyone else look. Truth. It’s so easy and it’s better than a Red Bull.

  10. tarmacjerry says: Apr 17, 2013 7:48 PM

    Kudos to him for not participating in the media-hype machine. A guy can’t even realize he’s not NFL material and make a basic career decision without it getting the patriotic-spin to it.

  11. EJ says: Apr 17, 2013 8:00 PM

    He will probably make more money in the Military than as a Receiver in the NFL. He is most likely backup/practice squad material anyway. He’s making the right decision.

  12. spiderperv says: Apr 17, 2013 8:02 PM

    Total respect for the guy. The original story is just more betrayal of the populace by the Fourth Estate.

  13. fanfrommontreal says: Apr 17, 2013 8:05 PM

    Makes more sense like that.
    Good luck to you, sir.

  14. mswravens says: Apr 17, 2013 8:17 PM

    Amen – and thank you for your service & any future service! Stay safe!

  15. fhuizar says: Apr 17, 2013 8:22 PM

    My brother’s teammate

  16. dropkickbanana says: Apr 17, 2013 9:01 PM

    Semper Fi Marine. You do us all proud Brandon.

  17. trevor123698 says: Apr 17, 2013 9:09 PM

    if he wants to help people why is he part of an illegal standing army which is one of the largest barriers to our freedom there ever could be? I would suggest for him to review the founding documents of this once great constitutional republic. A standing army is illegal. They are not fighting for anything but business interests. Don’t believe me though, check it for yourself. “WAR IS A RACKET” -written by former USMC major general Smedley D Butler. Wake up people. The military doesn’t fight for anything remotely resembling peace. Terror is always commited by the intelligence community (i.e CIA, MOSSAD, etc)

  18. genericcommenter says: Apr 17, 2013 9:19 PM

    The real story is a lot more commendable than the false one, anyway.

  19. briang123 says: Apr 17, 2013 10:13 PM

    This guy is why I feel like America will survive anything and everything. We have him, and they don’t.

  20. millerhour says: Apr 17, 2013 10:16 PM


    As a military member i can guarantee you his annual salary in the military will be far less than what he would make as a practice squad player.

  21. sarge says: Apr 18, 2013 12:12 AM

    Coulda been a special teams demon. Teams need those guys.

  22. lance19 says: Apr 18, 2013 12:34 AM

    Good on him for not perpetuating a misunderstanding that others might’ve
    welcomed. 🙂

  23. torturedraiderfan says: Apr 18, 2013 6:22 AM

    For a Marine, I believe setting the record straight is called Honor.

  24. racistchecker says: Apr 18, 2013 6:47 AM

    I’m glad Mr. O’Brien corrected the media outlets trying to make this into a “hero” story.

    It makes you wonder why every major news outlet propagated the same story! All of them pitched the same line that came out to be a big lie!

    It makes you wonder if there is a truly “free” media or is it controlled by special interests who profit from war?

  25. Rick Spielman is a Magician says: Apr 18, 2013 9:35 AM

    Hard to believe the media would get anything wrong on the Boston Marathon story.

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