The Coveted Black and Gold: A Daily Journey through the U.S. Army Ranger School Experience


JD Lock, LTC, U.S. Army (Ret.)

John Lock is a 1982 graduate and former Assistant Professor of the United States Military Academy at West Point who retired from active duty as a Lieutenant Colonel in May 2002.  He enlisted in the Army as a private in 1974 and served as a Non-Commissioned Officer until 1978.  His commissioned assignments included the 1st Armored Division, West Germany, the 82d Airborne Division, Fort Bragg, N.C., Deputy Commander New York District U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and Deputy/Acting Chief Engineer Stabilization Forces (SFOR), Sarajevo, Bosnia-Herzegovina.

His military and civilian education includes the Engineer Officer Basic Course, the Infantry Officer Advanced Course, the Combined Arms Services Staff School, the Command and General Staff College, and a Master of Science from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI). His decorations include the Ranger Tab, Master Parachutists Wings, and the Legion of Merit.

He is the author of To Fight With Intrepidity: The Complete History of the U.S. Army Rangers, 1622 to Present (1st ed.), published by Simon & Schuster/Pocket Books, 1998 and republished by Fenestra Books (2nd ed), 2001, and the soon to be published A Legacy of Valor: The Heroic Exploits of the United States Army Rangers.

In addition to ongoing writing projects including novels and screenplays, Lock also works in support of architectural development and modeling and simulation for Current Force and the Army’s transformation to the Future Force.
His website is
He can be contacted at

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For more than 200 years, U.S. Army Rangers have earned their unrivaled reputation as the world’s premier warriors with bravery, blood, and sacrifice. Being a Ranger is a function of attitude and a state of mind, as well as a matter of skills and training, and it is the mission of the U.S. Army Ranger School to meld and to fortify these attributes. Ranger School is a journey that must be taken one day at a time…and each day of that journey is captured in this book. It is the cumulative effect of each of those days, the arduous work, the deprivation, the misery, that leads to what is ultimately called the Ranger School experience.


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