BY C.S. HOWARD
Gyriah Buchanan recently completed 13 weeks of recruit basic training with the United States Marine Corps. Family members traveled to South Carolina for the graduation ceremony. A 2013 graduate of Sarasota High School, Gyriah participated in cheer leading, track and weightlifting all four years of high school. After graduation , she attended Florida A&M University for three years, where she switched between majors in Physical Therapy and Occupational Therapy until she decided on Criminal Justice.
She soon decided that she wanted to do something different. “I enlisted in the Marines because I wanted to challenge myself and, at the same time, be a leader and role model for my peers and my family,” she said. “I was going through a lot in college and I just wanted to get away from the environment.”
Gyriah admits that basic training was not easy. “It was very challenging” she said. “There were things that I had to do that I thought I would never be able to do and things I didn’t think I could physically do. Bootcamp really pushes you to your limits and helps you discover not only what kind of person you’re going to be, but what kind of Marine you would be,” she said.
Gyriah is not certain where she will be stationed until she completes MOS (Military Occupational Specialty) school and her Marine Combat Training. Her MOS/job will be Aircraft Maintenance. She is the daughter of Sonjia Smith and Gregory “Mookie” Buchanan, and the granddaughter of Beulah Brookins, Edith Olave and Gregory Buchanan Sr .