Official Biography
Enlisted Bandleader
Master Sergeant James A. Merville

Master Sergeant James Merville enlisted in the United States Marine Corps in December 2002. He reported to Recruit Training at Marine Corps Recruit Depot San Diego, California in January 2003. After successfully completing Recruit Training, and Marine Combat Training, Private First Class Merville was assigned to the Basic Musician Course at the Armed Forces School of Music at Naval Amphibious Base Little Creek, Virginia. While attending the School of Music, Private First Class Merville was meritoriously promoted to the rank of Lance Corporal.
Upon graduation from the Basic Musicians Course in December 2003, Lance Corporal Merville received orders to the Marine Forces Pacific Band in Kaneohe Bay, Hawaii as a Trombone instrumentalist. During this assignment, Lance Corporal Merville was promoted to both Corporal and Sergeant. He filled multiple billets including Combat Marksmanship Instructor, Section Leader, Squad Leader, Guide, Platoon Sergeant, Safety Officer, Supply Chief, and Acting Instrument Repair Technician. In February 2010, Sergeant Merville received orders to Marine Band San Diego aboard Marine Corps Recruit Depot San Diego, California.
While stationed at MCRD San Diego, Sergeant Merville was promoted to Staff Sergeant and selected for the billet of Instrument Repair Technician. In July 2010, Staff Sergeant Merville moved to Red Wing, Minnesota for instruction in Band Instrument Repair at Minnesota State College. Staff Sergeant Merville graduated in May 2011 and assumed duties as the Instrument Repair Technician for Marine Corps Band New Orleans stationed with Marine Forces Reserve in New Orleans, Louisiana.
In April 2014, Staff Sergeant Merville was selected for duty as a recruiter and attended the Basic Recruiter Course in San Diego and was subsequently assigned to Recruiting Station Phoenix, Arizona in September 2014 as a Canvassing Recruiter. While serving with Recruiting Station Phoenix, he was promoted to Gunnery Sergeant and served as the Pool Program Specialist overseeing all potential Marine Corps recruits in the state of Arizona.
Upon completion of his tour of recruiting duty, in September 2017, Gunnery Sergeant Merville received orders to Marine Detachment, Little Creek aboard Joint Expeditionary Base Little Creek-Fort Story, to serve as the Instrument Repair Technician for the Naval School of Music. In addition to being the Instrument Repair Technician, Gunnery Sergeant Merville filled the following billets: Safety Officer, Inventory Control Officer, Supply, Fiscal and Purchasing Chief.
In August 2021, Gunnery Sergeant Merville executed orders to “The Division’s Own” 2d Marine Division Band Camp Lejeune, North Carolina to fill the billet of Instrument Repair Technician. While serving in the 2d Marine Division Band he was promoted to Master Sergeant.
Master Sergeant Merville earned an Associate Degree in Band Instrument Repair from Minnesota State College Southeast in December 2018. His awards include the Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal, Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal, Good Conduct Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Global War on Terrorism Medal, and the Outstanding Volunteer Service Medal.