Val Raugas is a tour guide at the New Jersey Vietnam Veterans Memorial Foundation. He has been a volunteer at the Memorial since 2009. He is a former Marine Corps officer with a combined thirteen years of active and reserve service.
Val enlisted in the Marine Corps Officer Selection Program (Platoon Leaders Course) as a college student at Trenton State College. Upon graduation from College in 1962, Val was commissioned as a Second Lieutenant in the Marine Corps Reserve.
As part of his military obligation, Val served on active duty for a three year period (1962-1965) . He did two tours in Southeast Asia, serving on Okinawa with Headquarters Battalion, Third Marine Division as communications officer and later as communications center platoon commander. He did not serve in Vietnam but is a Vietnam Era veteran. His former unit, Third Marine Division was the first major combat unit to officially enter South Vietnam in March of 1965. This was 6 months after Val had rotated back to the United States.
Upon his return to the States, Val served as communications officer with Marine Wing Headquarters Group and Marine Air Group 14, Second Marine Aircraft Wing in New Bern, North Carolina.
Upon completion of his three years of active duty, Val transferred to Marine Corps Reserves. While serving as infantry platoon commander in a Reserve infantry company, he was promoted to Captain. He later served as batallion operations officer and company commander with 6th Motor Transport Battalion.
In his professional life, Val was a teacher of mathematics for six years and school psychologist for 35. His undergraduate degree was a Bachelor of Arts with a Mathematics major from Trenton State College. His graduate degrees were a Master of Arts in Behavioral Sciences and a Professional Diploma in School Psychology from Newark State College.