Growing up, he was a star-athlete at Chapel Hill High School. But all of his life, the Marine Corps was calling his name.
"I just wanted to be one of the few and the proud," said Marine Sergeant Michael Driver.
"When he went in, 9-11 had just happened," said father Jeffrey Driver. "He knew what he was going in for."
And fresh out of high school Michael Driver began training as a radio operator. He served one tour in Afghanistan then two more in Iraq, eventually earning the rank of sergeant. Driver told us a lot of progress has been made that we can be proud of.
"Insurgency went down a lot there, we pushed them out of the city, and we did a lot over there the second time we went down there," said Driver.
There's a lot of political talk right now about how to handle the Iraq War. But Driver said a troop pullout would be a mistake.
"The Iraqi Army's doing pretty good but they just haven't got the concept of how to do their job right yet. We're still training them and the Iraqi police."
Driver survived several IED explosions and ambush attacks, things still too difficult to talk about.
"We prayed for him a lot," said his father.
And those prayers would soon be answered.
"It was a good surprise, we weren't expecting him home for another two weeks," said his father. "He snuck in on us."
"It's a little weird," said Michael. "I miss being with all the friends I've been deployed with and not seeing them anymore, but other than that it feels good to home, finally."
"He's upheld the Marine Corps tradition cause he'd done real good," said Michael's father. "And we couldn't be any prouder than we are now. He's served our country and we're real proud."
And now this decorated war hero is home to stay.
Driver said he's enjoying some much needed R & R right now. After that, he said he'd like to go into contracting work for the government.