Robert (Bob) Tyler dropped out of college in 1967 and joined the Marines with dreams of flying. His plans were initially derailed, but he eventually earned both a Lieutenant's commission and his wings. By late 1970 he was flying a CH-46 Sea Knight helicopter over South Vietnam, with his unit based at Marble Mountain near Da Nang. Over the next 27 years Tyler made the Marines his life, moving the family frequently as he progressed from challenge to challenge. Tours included command of a KC-130 Hercules squadron, and an assignment at Marine Corps Headquarters during the First Iraq War. Tyler retired from the Marines as a full Colonel (with a Ph.D. in Psychology), in 1997.