Master Sergeant (MSgt.) Avery enlisted in the United States Marine Corps and attended Boot Camp at Marine Corps Recruit Depot San Diego, California. Upon graduation, on 11 December 1975, he reported to Manual Morse Intercept School at Corey Station in Pensacola, Florida. Following completion of the school, MSgt. Avery was assigned to the First Radio Battalion at Kaneohe, Hawaii, where he had the opportunity to participate in additional training in Okinawa, Japan, 29 Palms, CA and two tours aboard the USS Blue Ridge (LCC-19). In July of 1979, MSgt. Avery completed his active duty and returned to Fenton, Missouri where he remained in the Inactive Reserves. In 1982, he began to drill with Headquarters and Service Company (H & S Co), 3D Battalion, 24th Marines in the S-3 Operations Section. In 1983, he transferred to the Naval Security Group St. Louis.
In November 1990, MSgt. Avery returned to H & S Co, 3/24 to participate in Operation Desert Shield/Desert Storm as the Assistant Operations Chief. Following the return of the unit to St. Louis, MSgt. Avery remained with the unit as the Company 1st Sergeant until 1993, when he returned to the Naval Security Group Detachment as the Senior Enlisted Advisor. MSgt. Avery left the Marine Corps Reserve in 2000. In December 2004, MSgt. Avery reenlisted in the Marine Corps Reserves with 3/24 as the H & S Company 1st Sergeant, then the Intelligence Chief. From January to March 2006, he attended Intelligence Chief’s “Journeyman Course” at Dam Neck, VA. Upon completion of the school, MSgt. Avery returned to St. Louis in preparation for mobilization.
In April 2006, MSgt. Avery was assigned as the Intelligence Advisor to Military Training Team (Iraq) 10. The team began training in Kansas City, MO, followed by Camp Pendleton and 29 Palms, CA before departing for Iraq. The team was first stationed outside Ramadi, Iraq with an Iraqi Army Battalion. In addition to his duties as the Intelligence Advisor, MSgt. Avery also became the Senior Enlisted Advisor and Interpreter Coordinator. In December 2006, the team was transferred to Al Qaim, Iraq to an Iraqi Army Brigade. The team completed its mission in April 2007. The team was deactivated in April 2007 and MSgt. Avery again returned to St. Louis as the Intelligence Chief for 3/24. On 1 February 2008, MSgt. Avery was retired from the United States Marine Corps. Mr. Avery has been the Family Readiness Officer for 3/24 since 6 October 2008.
MSgt. Avery’s decorations include the Kuwait Liberation Medal (Kuwait), Kuwait Liberation Medal (Saudi Arabia), Armed Forces Reserve Medal, Sea Service Deployment Ribbon, Global War on Terrorism Medal, Iraq Campaign Medal, Southwest Asia Service Medal, National Defense Medal, Selected Marine Corps Reserve Medal, Good Conduct Medal, Meritorious Unit Citation Ribbon, Navy Unit Citation Ribbon, Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal, Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal and the Bronze Star.