After high school graduation in 1963, Ralston voluntarily enlisted into the United States Marine Corps, where he served from 1963-1967. He was immediately deployed to Camp Lejeune in Jacksonville, NC for infantry training. At completion of training, Sgt. Ralston was sent to Pensacola, FL where he attended school for Communications and Electronic Warfare. From January 1966 to January 1967, he was stationed in Huế (Phu Bai), Vietnam, during which time he worked his way up the ranks to Sergeant. Sgt. Ralston received the Vietnam Campaign Medal, Expert Rifleman, Pistol Sharpshooter, Good Conduct Medal, and Top-Secret Security Clearance. Sgt. Ralston is father to two daughters: Debbie, born in 1965 in a Marine Corps Hospital, and Kim, born in 1967 on the Marine Corps birthday.

Sgt. Ralston was nominated by his daughter, Kimberly Ralston.

“I am very proud of him for serving our country at such a difficult time in a world full of conflict and controversy. My dad was dedicated and hardworking all my life. I believe his time in the service helped to mold him into the man and father that he is today.”

Ralston chose Platoon 22 to receive the donation made by NFM Salute on his behalf.