John Rice graduated from East Chapel Hill High School and went to college but he dropped out to join the Marines Corps. Rice insisted on infantry, and was assigned to a special operations unit that deployed to Iraq in 2008. Three months into his tour, he was injured.
He told the story to his wife Cassie at the StoryCorps booth in Durham, North Carolina.
John Rice and his wife Cassie at the StoryCorps booth at the American Tobacco Historic District this past April. All of the StoryCorps interviews are archived at the Library of Congress.