Active-Duty Soldier, Now Georgetown Alum, Achieves Lifelong Dream To Be an Army Officer

Lester Mungro with family
Lester Mungro with his father, mother, wife and two children.

Lester Mungro’s story originally appeared in the article, Active-Duty Soldier, Now Georgetown Alum, Achieves Lifelong Dream To Be an Army Officer.

Lester Mungro (G’24) has wanted to join the U.S. Army and earn a commission as an officer for as long as he can remember.

The military lifestyle runs in his family. Mungro’s grandfather fought in the Vietnam War. His father also served in the Army, as well as his uncle. Even his wife is an Army sergeant, but no one in his family has been an officer in the military. It was Mungro’s father who pushed and inspired him to join the Army as an officer and build upon his family’s tradition.

“That would be the one lesson I say that he taught me, and it stuck, to be better than the person that came before you,” Mungro said. “If they climb from one to three, don’t start at one. Start at four and just keep going. It’s one of the best things he taught me, and I want to teach that to my kids and set them up to be better than me.”

Lester Mungro
Lester Mungro (G’24)

That lesson from his father is what motivated Mungro to join an Army ROTC program when he first enrolled at Austin Peay State University in 2015. But when his wife became pregnant with their first child, Mungro had to find a different path to make his dream of becoming an officer a reality. He left college and the ROTC and enlisted in the Army to provide for his family.

Mungro started his Army career as a mechanic fixing Humvees, Army trucks, and troop carriers. When he realized he didn’t want to be a mechanic forever, he pivoted to a role as an Army public relations specialist. Mungro also completed his bachelor’s degree in film production while creating content for the Army in 2022.

While Mungro worked his way up the ranks to staff sergeant, he never forgot his goal of earning his officer’s commission.

Six years after he joined the Army, Mungro applied and was accepted into the Army’s Green to Gold Program, which enables enlisted men and women to earn their first bachelor’s or master’s degree and join an Army ROTC program to become an Army officer upon graduation.

While looking for a graduate program, Mungro was drawn to Georgetown’s Master’s in Integrated Marketing Communications for its emphasis on practical marketing training.

For the last two years, Mungro has been working hard toward his graduate degree full-time from the School of Continuing Studies, all while balancing responsibilities in Georgetown’s ROTC program and Hoya Battalion and being a husband and father to two children.

Now at the end of his Georgetown career, Mungro can finally celebrate a milestone he’s been running toward for years. On May 17, Mungro earned his commission as a second lieutenant in the Army in the commissioning ceremony in Gaston Hall, followed by a pinning ceremony in the Healey Family Student Center.

A Lifelong Dream Fulfilled

On an early morning the Friday of his commissioning, Mungro said the magnitude of the moment didn’t quite sink in, even as he put on his Army dress uniform adorned with service ribbons and medals.

During the commissioning ceremony, Mungro processed into Gaston Hall with 29 of his fellow Army cadets to hear from keynote speaker Master Sgt. Brent Key before being recognized as a class and taking an oath of office. 

Here are a few moments from the commissioning ceremony in Gaston Hall.

Commissioning Ceremony 2024
Mungro with other cadets in the Hoya Battalion at their commissioning ceremony in Gaston Hall on May 17, 2024.

"It means a lot. I think it’s really powerful to come from Montgomery, Alabama … to get accepted into Georgetown, to attend Georgetown, to graduate, to commission from this prestigious school in the nation’s capital. I think it’s amazing."
Lester Mungro (G’24)

"The ROTC program at Georgetown has to be one of the best ROTC programs in the nation."
Lester Mungro (G’24)

Getting Pinned: A Family Affair

After the commissioning ceremony, Mungro headed to the Healey Family Student Center to be pinned as an officer.

Mungro wasn’t alone. Joining him were his father, mother, wife, two children and his mentor in the Army. 

For his father, also named Lester Mungro, seeing his son earn his commission and walk the graduation stage made him proud to know that his son accomplished more than he did in the Army. That his son was graduating from Georgetown was even more meaningful for the Army veteran, who was accepted into Georgetown three decades ago but could not attend. In a way, his son stole the life he had wanted, he joked. 

Lester Mungro’s father
Lester Mungro's father.

“I hope he can understand how proud I am of him, what he’s doing and what he’s about to do because he still ain’t finished, so he’s got to keep going,” his father said. 

After the last two years of serving full-time in the Army and being a mother to two children while Lester has been in school, Sgt. Imani Mungro has witnessed her husband earn his commission while being a role model for his children and other members of his community. It signifies not only an accomplishment for him but also for the entire Mungro family — and it’s a great feeling, she said. 

“He’s managed to be a father, support his fraternity, volunteer, be productive in the community and in ROTC and take on leadership roles and still come home and do what he’s supposed to do as the man of the house and as the father of the house,” she said. “So I say it feels great.”

Get a glimpse of a few moments from the pinning ceremony with the Mungro family.

Lester Mungro gives his first salute as an officer and is pinned by his wife, Sgt. Amani Mungro.
Lester Mungro gives his first salute as an officer and is pinned by his wife, Sgt. Amani Mungro.

"It was the support knowing that no matter what I was doing, I knew I didn’t have to worry about what was going on at home. My wife is a true partner. She was there through the entire thing."
Lester Mungro (G’24)

"Georgetown does a great job at preparing you for life, whether it’s in the Army or post-Army, because the way the classes are designed, it’s a lot of forward-thinking and thinking outside of the box."
Lester Mungro (G’24)

Maj. Darius Hinton, a personal friend and mentor, administers Lester Mungro’s officer’s oath.
Maj. Darius Hinton, a personal friend and mentor, administers Lester Mungro’s officer’s oath.

"For him to be my friend, for him to be my mentor, for him to help me along the way, it’s amazing. And for him to be here and to be able to give my oath is also amazing too."
Lester Mungro (G’24)

Lester Mungro with his son and daughter.
Lester Mungro with his son and daughter.

"It means a lot for me that they’re here. But I hope in the future that they realize that it took a lot of time and effort to get here, and I hope that they never give up on whatever they set their mind to."
Lester Mungro (G’24)

Lester Mungro with his father.

"I think if I had to choose anything to tell my dad, it would probably be, ‘I told you I would do it. I told you I would do it."
Lester Mungro (G’24)

All photos by Charles Siwinski.

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