ORANGE GROVE, TX, US
U. S. Marine Corps
PFC, 3D BN 5TH MAR, (RCT-2, I MEF FWD), 1ST MAR DIV, CAMP PENDLETON, CA
12/06/2010, HELMAND PROVINCE, AFGHANISTAN
Private First Class Rusk attended Orange Grove High School where he excelled in Varsity Sports. Not only did he succeed on the playing field, he was also honored by his fellow classmates and teachers. Colton was voted Mr. O.G.H. S., Senior Class favorite, Prom King, and the Lupe Ochoa Sportsmanship Memorial Award.
Colton enlisted in the delayed entry program of the USMC on 6-16-08, graduated Orange Grove High School on 6-2-09, graduated USMC San Diego CA 1-29-10, SOI Camp Pendleton CA. Colton Rusk was a certified infantry machine gunner assigned to 3/5 Darkhorse WPNS Co CATT II Camp Pendleton, CA. He was chosen to be sent to South Carolina to American K-9 Interdiction to train for Improvised Explosive Device Detector dog handler. It was here that Colton and Eli became a team. He along with Eli left for OEF Afghanistan on his 20th birthday 9-23-10.
Rusk was the kind of student who would turn on a 1,000-watt grin when he got called down by a teacher, and “aw shucks” his way out of whatever mischief he was in, teachers at Orange Grove High School said. “He was just everybody’s kid,” said Spanish teacher Anna Garza, who knew Rusk from the time he was born. “If I had a son, he is what I hope my son would be.”
“He was just a good kid all around,” said Orange Grove High School Principal Tommy Moses. “It’s not a single thing. It’s that he was a great young man. He was everything.”
Colton is known for his beautiful smile!
His motto was “Don’t be afraid to go after your hopes and dreams, but don’t be afraid to be willing to pay the price”. This was what he chose for his motto under his senior picture.
Fellow brothers in arms in Afghanistan all said that Colton saved their lives many times while he was with them and will be greatly missed. He was their hero. Pictured in the portrait is not Colton but his brother Brady Rusk with Colton’s K-9 partner Eli.