Master Gunnery Sergeant
Michael R. Montoya
Michael Montoya enlisted in the United States Marine Corps in the summer of 1988 and reported to Marine Corps Recruit Depot at Parris Island, South Carolina for basic training. Upon graduation, Private First Class Montoya reported to the Naval School of Music in Little Creek, Virginia.
Following the completion of the Basic Course in May of 1989, Lance Corporal Montoya reported for duty with the Fourth Marine Aircraft Wing Band in New Orleans, Louisiana. Lance Corporal Montoya performed as trombone instrumentalist with the band's concert and ceremonial bands, the jazz band, as well as trombone and euphonium instrumentalist with the brass quintet. In addition to his musical duties, Lance Corporal Montoya served as the transportation non-commissioned officer (NCO), the billeting NCO, and the assistant loadmaster.
In the summer of 1993 Corporal Montoya received orders to report to III Marine Expeditionary Force (III MEF) Band in Okinawa, Japan. Here he served as
trombone instrumentalist with various ensembles of the III MEF Band, as well as trombone section leader and band supply non-commissioned officer in charge (NCOIC).
Sergeant Montoya was transferred to the Marine Corps Logistics Base Band in Albany, Georgia in August of 1994. With this band he served as trombone instrumentalist for the concert and ceremonial Bands, jazz band, and the "Party"/Dixieland Band. Sergeant Montoya also served as the Assistant Drum Major, low brass section commander, the leader of the brass quintet, platoon sergeant, and band supply chief.
With a selection to Staff Sergeant in the summer of 1997, Sergeant Montoya was assigned to the Allied Forces Southern Europe (CINCSOUTH) Band in Naples, Italy. While being stationed with the CINCSOUTH Band Staff Sergeant Montoya served as the Drum Major and trombone instrumentalist for several ensembles. He also served as Chief of Band Operations, administrative chief, and leading non-commissioned officer in charge of the jazz band "Alliance".
In December of 2000, Staff Sergeant Montoya received orders to return to the Naval School of Music for training in the Ceremonial Conductor / Drum Major Course (CCDM). Upon graduation from the CCDM Course in May of 2001, Staff Sergeant Montoya remained aboard the School of Music to serve as the Advance Course Drum Major Instructor, Basic Course Drill Band Instructor, and Marine Element Platoon Sergeant. In October 2001, SSgt Montoya was promoted to the rank of Gunnery Sergeant.
February 2003 brought Gunnery Sergeant Montoya to the Second Marine Aircraft Wing Band in Cherry Point, North Carolina where he served as the Drum Major. From February to September of 2005 GySgt Montoya was deployed to Al Anbar Province, Iraq with Marine Wing Headquarters Squadron 2. While in Iraq, GySgt Montoya served as the Tactical Air Command Center (TACC) Security Platoon Commander in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom.
In July 2006, GySgt Montoya reported to the 2d Marine Division Band to serve as the Drum Major. GySgt Montoya was promoted to Master Sergeant in February 2007 prior to deploying to Operation Iraqi Freedom 06-08 with the 2d Low Altitude Air Defense Battalion (REIN) from February to September 2007.
Master Gunnery Sergeant Montoya was promoted to his present rank in May of 2009 and transferred back to III Marine Expeditionary Force to serve as the Bandmaster. In June of 2015, he assumed his current position as Bandmaster for the Marine Forces Pacific Band, Hawaii.
Master Gunnery Sergeant Montoya's awards include the Joint Service Commendation Medal, Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal (third award), Joint Service Achievement Medal, Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal, Joint Meritorious Unit Award, Navy Meritorious Unit Commendation (third award), Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal (seventh award), National Defense Service Medal (second award), Kosovo Campaign Medal, Iraqi Campaign Medal, Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Armed Forces Service Medal, Sea Service Deployment Ribbon (third award), Navy and Marine Corps Overseas Service Ribbon (third award), and the NATO Medal (second award).