Devil Pups is a program for kids fourteen to seventeen years of age. Its first and last goal is to form American citizens of the near future.
The program is sponsored by Devil Pups, Inc., based in southern California. The Pups were founded in 1954 in Los Angeles by former and retired Marine officers concerned about the citizenship, education and training of the young in our country. The program derives its name in a whimsical take on the German word Teufelhunden, the nom de guerre that, legend has it, was bestowed upon the Marines by their German adversaries at the Battle of Belleau Wood in June 1918.
The ethos of the program clearly traces its roots to the Marine Corps. The culminant activity of the program, conducted every year, is the ten-day summer camp at Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton. Youth who complete the rigors of summer camp go on to graduate from the program and earn the title “Devil Pup. “The Nor-Cal Devil Pups are headquartered in Santa Rosa. The Liaison Representative for this “Sonoma Platoon” is Mr. Clint St. Martin, 34, a former Marine and alumnus of Devil Pups. St. Martin has crafted a comprehensive and eclectic five-month program for his charges.
The program includes instruction and training in civics and U. S. history; intensive physical fitness, and life -saving skills; its component of vocation awareness includes information on careers in the Armed Forces and in public safety; there is participation in service projects and interaction with Veterans’ groups, and much more. All of this leads up to summer camp at Camp Pendleton. St. Martin’s would-be Devil Pups are known to be physically fit and thoroughly trained for summer camp.).
The following is a letter from a 2017 graduate of the Devil Pups Youth Organization:
Hello, I’m Matt Wieland and I went through the Devil Pups program back in 2017. I’ve always thought about joining the military and tried to take every opportunity to become prepared for after high school. Even though the Devil Pups program isn’t trying to get you to enlist, it instills the discipline and core values that are used in both the military and civilian world. I really enjoyed my time in the program. It taught me to trust my own abilities and pushed me to do things that I never thought I could accomplish. There is no way that you can get through the camp alone. Most of the tasks and challenges force you to work together with others, often people that you’ve never met before that come from all walks of life from kids to near becoming homeless to kids who live in mansions. Since everyone is looked at and treated the same at camp it shows that, no matter your background or current life, you can still work together and view each other as equals. I got to work with some really great kids who helped me, as I helped them get over the current obstacle and to keep on going since you’ll give up on yourself long before others will give up on you. Going through and completing the Devil Pups program is a memory and experience I’ll never forget and I am grateful that I was able to do it.