Marines


Biography

 

Sergeant Major Richard J. Popp
Sergeant Major
Marine Air Control Squadron 24

Sergeant Major Popp enlisted in the Marine Corps in January 1997 from Indianapolis, Indiana and attended Recruit Training in San Diego, California.

Upon completion of infantry training and obtaining the MOS of 0311, Private First Class Popp was assigned to Company K, 3rd Battalion, 24th Marines in Terre Haute, Indiana. Private First Class Popp served as an automatic riflemen and was promoted to Lance Corporal. He served in various squad billets and as a company radio operator. He was subsequently promoted to Corporal.

In November 2002, Corporal Popp transferred to Company C, 1st Battalion, 24th Marines located in Lansing Michigan, where he served as a squad leader. In February 2003 Corporal Popp was mobilized and deployed in support of Operation IRAQI FREEDOM. During this time, Company C primarily provided security for Forward Arming and Refueling Points throughout Iraq. Corporal Popp was released from active duty in December 2003 and was promoted to Sergeant in January 2004. In July 2004, Sergeant Popp was assigned as a Platoon Commander, and remained in that billet until April 2006.

In May 2006, Sergeant Popp was mobilized for a second deployment in support of Operation IRAQI FREEDOM. In October 2006, Sergeant Popp was shot and wounded while conducting combat patrols in Fallujah, Iraq. Sergeant Popp was medically evacuated and eventually sent to Camp Pendleton Naval Hospital for medical treatment and rehabilitation. During rehabilitation, Sergeant Popp served as Platoon Sergeant for other wounded and RBE Marines from 1st Battalion, 24th Marines. Sergeant Popp was released to full duty and demobilized in April 2007.

In 2007, Sergeant Popp was promoted to the rank of Staff Sergeant, and served as a Platoon Commander. In May 2010, Staff Sergeant Popp relocated and transferred to Company K, 3rd Battalion, 24th Marines where he served as the Weapons Platoon Commander. In February 2011, Staff Sergeant Popp successfully completed HRST Masters course in Camp Pendleton, California and was promoted to the rank of Gunnery Sergeant in March. In June 2011, Gunnery Sergeant Popp served as the primary HRST Master for Marine Week, St Louis. Gunnery Sergeant Popp transitioned to the role of Company Gunnery Sergeant in March 2014.

In April 2015, Gunnery Sergeant Popp was promoted to the rank of First Sergeant and was assigned to Company B, 1st Battalion, 25th Marines in Londonderry, New Hampshire. In April of 2017, First Sergeant Popp was reassigned to Company B, 1st Battalion, 24th Marines.

In July 2020, First Sergeant Popp was frocked to the rank of Sergeant Major and assigned as the Squadron Sergeant Major for Marine Air Control Squadron 24 in Virginia Beach, Virginia.

Sergeant Major Popp's personal awards include the Purple Heart, Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal, Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal with one gold star in lieu of second award, and the Combat Action Ribbon. Sergeant Major Popp holds a Master of Science degree in Business Administration from Indiana University and a Bachelor of Science degree in Graphic Arts Management from Indiana State University.