“A true American hero and patriot,” Marcus Luttrell is widely known for his actions as a Navy SEAL on the Afghanistan and Pakistan border.
His harrowing story as the lone survivor of what became the single largest loss of life in a day in the history of the Navy SEALs was chronicled in his New York Times best-selling book Lone Survivor, which is currently being made into a movie.
The Willis native attended SHSU between 1994-1998, majoring in business administration.
“Marcus left SHSU before graduating because of the desire to honor his country,” one nomination letter said. “He joined the Navy and went on to excel in the Naval Special Warfare Community, that is well known for being the toughest training in the military.”
“Marcus put his life on the line everyday for his country. Without individuals like Marcus this country would not be what it is nor would we have the freedoms we enjoy daily and take for granted,” his nomination form said. “Marcus once stated at ‘Let’s Talk’ that he never expected to come back from a mission. He made peace with God and was willing to die for his country.”
Since returning to from his mission with Operation Redwing in 2005, for which he was awarded the Navy Cross by President George W. Bush, Luttrell has dedicated himself to veterans’ causes, donating all profits from his book to help the families of his fallen comrades and military charities and establishing the Lone Survivor Foundation that will provide funds to various charities across the country, including the Wounded Warrior Foundation. He also has served as SHSU’s 14th President’s Speaker Series lecturer, discussing the mission upon which his book is based.
In addition to the Navy Cross, the Delta Tau Delta alumnus has been recognized with the Bronze Star, Purple Heart and two Life-Saving Medals.
“Marcus has been through more than any of us can
imagine,” his form said. “He literally could have made millions of dollars to
benefit himself but chose to immortalize his team members who are his heroes.”