In 1947, McQueen joined the United States Marine Corps. He was quickly promoted to Private First Class. He was assigned to an armored unit. He reverted to his prior rebelliousness ways. As a result McQueen was demoted to private seven times. He went UA (unauthorized absence) by failing to return after a weekend pass had expired. He stayed away with a girlfriend for two weeks, until the shore patrol caught him. He resisted arrest as a result spent 41 days in the brig.