Major General, US Marine Corps
William Henry Rupertus was born November 14, 1889, in Washington, D.C. Rupertus began his military career immediately after high school, originally intending to serve as a cutter captain in the United States Revenue Cutter Service (the earlier version of the modern Coast Guard). However, his excellent marksmanship led to his being recruited by the Marine Corps, and he accepted a commission in November of 1913. Rupertus served on the Marine Corps rifle team, earning the Distinguished Marksman badge and winning a number of shooting matches.
The Rifleman's Creed by Major General W. H. Rupertus, USMC
THIS IS MY RIFLE. There are many like it but this one is mine. My rifle is my best friend. It is my life. I must master it as I master my life. My rifle, without me is useless. Without my rifle, I am useless. I must fire my rifle true. I must shoot straighter than any enemy who is trying to kill me. I must shoot him before he shoots me. I will.... My rifle and myself know that what counts in this war is not the rounds we fire, the noise of our burst, nor the smoke we make. We know that it is the hits that count. We will hit... My rifle is human, even as I, because it is my life. Thus, I will learn it as a brother. I will learn its weakness, its strength, its parts, its accessories, its sights and its barrel. I will keep my rifle clean and ready, even as I am clean and ready. We will become part of each other. We will... Before God I swear this creed. My rifle and myself are the defenders of my country. We are the masters of our enemy. We are the saviors of my life. So be it, until victory is America's and there is no enemy, but Peace