Local woman proud of her husband serving in Marine Corps

Being a military spouse is hard.

After getting married July 1, 2019, Sarah and Gus Hogan moved to California so he could continue his service with the U.S. Marine Corps.

The next week, Gus was gone for training, so Sarah was at home by herself, didn’t know anyone and was more than 2,000 miles away from her hometown of Brownstown.

“At first, I was just super excited because I was like, ‘Oh, I get to live in southern California, the beach, good expectations,’” Sarah said. “We got out there, moved and settled. … I think it kind of hit me, like, ‘OK, this isn’t like a vacation or all fun and games.’”

She got a puppy in hopes she wouldn’t feel so alone, but she still found it difficult to adjust to a new way of life.

“It was hard because I didn’t really reach out with the other military spouses at first, and I just kind of thought, ‘Oh, I’ll be fine. Whatever,’” Sarah said. “I kept to myself. That was not good.”

In December that year, she moved back to Brownstown because Gus was doing some training ahead of his first deployment.

When she later returned to California, Sarah made it a point to be more involved with the military community. She joined Facebook groups, where she introduced herself and found friends with similar interests, and she also became really close friends with her neighbors, who became more like family.

That made a huge difference, Sarah said.

“That was like a big sigh of relief,” she said. “Now, it’s nice because I have all of these people who I can at least call or text, and it is nice to know you’re not alone. There are so many people in the same boat as you. I feel like that really helps you push through a lot of the struggles and stress because it’s like, ‘OK, these people are doing it, too. These people before me have done it, so I can get through it, too.”

In August 2021, the Hogans’ son, Woodrow, was born. Now, Gus is on his second deployment.

“I have the most supportive wife when it comes to this lifestyle, and I am very appreciative of how she handles all the stresses that come with being a military wife and mother,” Gus said. “It is very hard to leave her and my son, Woodrow, but knowing how great of a mother and wife she is makes it easier knowing that she will handle anything that comes her way back home.”

Gus and Sarah both graduated from Brownstown Central High School in 2018, and he went to boot camp that August.

“I have a long family history of being in the military,” Gus said. “Growing up, my uncle (dad’s brother) and my grandpa (mom’s dad) lived very close, so I was constantly around them. Grandpa served in Vietnam. My uncle served in the Marine Corps and talked often of his time in. I think that is what initially planted the seed of joining the Marine Corps at a very young age.”

Also, his cousin, Hunter “H.D.” Hogan, joined the Marine Corps right out of high school in 2009, and Gus said he was a big influence to him and he always looked up to him. Unfortunately, on June 23, 2012, H.D. was killed in Afghanistan.

“Ever since then, all I wanted to do was join the Marine Corps and fulfill my patriotic duty and serve,” Gus said.

Boot camp for Gus was at Marine Corps Recruit Depot San Diego for 13 weeks. From there, he went to Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton for basic infantry training for about eight weeks and then checked into his unit, 2nd Battalion 5th Marine Regiment.

All along, he has been in the infantry. In the summer of 2020, he was deployed to Iraq and was at the American embassy in Baghdad for six months.

Sarah said communication with her husband wasn’t too bad because there was only an eight-hour time difference.

Where he’s at now, though, it’s a bigger time difference.

“When I’m waking up, he’s going to bed, and then when I’m going to bed, he’s waking up,” Sarah said.

Fortunately, the military keeps her updated on what’s going on, so that helps.

Currently a rifleman squad leader with the rank of corporal, Gus said he will pick up sergeant soon.

“By far, the best part of being in the Marine Corps is the people you meet and work with on a daily basis,” he said. “The friendships and camaraderie are like no other. The best part about being a grunt is the training opportunities that we get to do, which are things that very few people get to experience.”

Gus said it means a great deal to him to serve his country.

“All of me is very patriotic,” he said. “The idea of America and the freedom aspect that we represent as a country, I take great pride in that, and by me serving, I’m just doing a very small part of trying to preserve the image America has had since the start of this great country.”

On the Fourth of July and every day, Gus said freedom and independence are everything to him.

“I think back to all the sacrifices that have been made by men and women from all walks of life in order to preserve what our country represents,” he said. “I take the utmost pride in being an American and everything it stands for.”

While Sarah said Gus can be very humble, she admires what he has done and continues to do in the military.

“His accomplishments in the military world are very great, and I’m very proud of him for everything that he has done,” she said. “He’s in charge of like 12 or 13 people now, and so that’s one big thing. I am super proud of him, and I always have been, and I always like to brag on him.”

Early on while living in California, Sarah ran an online boutique. Since having her first child, though, she has focused on being a stay-at-home mom, and she also stays busy with activities conducted for military wives and kids.

“They have get-togethers and programs and things,” Sarah said. “Some of our best friends, they have a son the same age as ours, so we hang out a lot.”

Sarah said serving in the military has been a lifetime goal for Gus, so she doesn’t mind the military life.

At this point, Gus said he doesn’t know how long he will serve.

“As of right now, I’m still undecided on whether I will get out or stay in and haven’t really looked into a field on the civilian sector,” he said.

Meet the Hogans 

Names: Gus and Sarah Hogan

Ages: Both are 22

Hometown: Gus is from Clearspring, and Sarah is from Brownstown

Education: Both graduated from Brownstown Central High School in 2018

Residence: Camp Pendleton in California

Occupation: Gus is in the U.S. Marine Corps, and Sarah is a stay-at-home mom

Family: Son, Woodrow; Gus’ parents are Scott and Melissa Hogan and siblings are Justin Lane, Jon Lane and Maggie Hogan; Sarah’s parents are James and Rachel Claycamp and sibling is Allison Rollins