10 Best Military Influencers on Social Media to Follow in 2024

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Are you curious why someone from the military might become an influencer? Military influencers, who stand guard on the front lines to protect us, use their platform to bridge a unique connection with the people they defend. By sharing their journeys and the challenges they’ve faced, they humanize the experiences of war, bringing their heroic tales to life in a relatable manner.

But who are these military influencers? In this article, we will talk about the most important personalities in the US Army.

Top 10 Military Social Media Influencers

Military influencers are symbols of honesty, strength, and bravery. Over the years, they have shown us the importance of caring for others. Here’s the list of the most Nobel-prize-winning humans on earth.

1. David Goggins

Ready to meet the first military influencer on social media? David Goggins, an American retired United States Navy SEAL, known for his motivational speaking, was born in New York on February 17, 1975. He is a military influencer, ultramarathon runner, ultra-distance cyclist, triathlete, public speaker, and author of two memory books.

Wondering how he became an influencer? Goggins applied to enter the US Air Force and was accepted into training. He was diagnosed with sickle cell trait during his training and temporarily removed from training. You might think that was the reason why he had to leave the Army. But the fact is, he left because he was retired, not because he had disabilities. He has received the ‘Enlisted Honor Man’ award for 20 years of his service in the US Army.

This sports Instagram influencer has won many prizes due to his services in the US Army, including the VFW Americanism Award in 2018. Goggins also published a New York Times Best Seller book titled Can’t Hurt Me: Master Your Mind and Defy the Odds. 

He has an active Instagram account with 11.4 million followers, where you can listen to most of his speeches.

2. Robert J. O’Neill

Let’s check out another military influencer. Meet Robert J. O’Neill, a former United States Navy SEAL, born on 10 April 1976. This military social media influencer is not only a TV news contributor but also a very skilled author. He has served the US Army the best way possible and claims to have killed Osama Bin Laden.

O’Neill registered in the United States Navy after a relationship breakup and became a Navy SEAL, serving with SEAL Teams Two, Four, and Six. He received numerous awards for his service, including two Silver Stars and four Bronze Star Medals. This military influencer was involved in high-profile missions, such as Marcus Luttrell’s rescue in Afghanistan and Richard Phillips’s rescue from the Maersk Alabama hijacking. He left the military in 2012 due to a lack of adrenaline during combat situations.

After leaving the US Navy, he started his career as a motivational speaker. Later, in 2015, he became a contributor to the cable news channel Fox News, but he left the company in August 2021. That October, he appeared on competitor Newsmax TV.

This American influencer has also published two books: ‘The Oprator,’ released in 2018, and ‘The Way Forward,’ released three years later.

3. C.T. Fletcher

Let’s start with the third military influencer on our list. C.T. Ali Fletcher, born June 8, 1959, is an American vlogger, YouTube influencer, media personality, actor, personal trainer, and former powerlifter and bodybuilder. He has become the World Bench Press Champion three times. 

Fletcher was born in Arkansas in 1959 and moved to California with his family as a child. He grew up with an abusive father and began working at a gas station at age 12. After joining the U.S. Army in 1977, he became interested in martial arts and eventually earned a second-degree black belt in Karate. He also started weightlifting and bodybuilding, eventually becoming more focused on powerlifting.

Fletcher became a YouTuber in 2013. His channel now has more than 1.5 million subscribers and over 1 billion views. He also has an Instagram account with 2.6 million followers. In 2016, this military influencer opened his gym, Iron Addicts Gym.

4. Jocko Willink

Looking for a motivational podcast? Meet Jocko Willink. John Gretton ‘Jocko’ Willink Jr. is an American author, military influencer, podcaster, and retired United States Navy officer who served in the Navy SEALs. 

Jocko Willink had a lifelong dream of joining the military and enrolled in the United States Navy at 19. He went through strict training to become a Navy SEAL, serving with SEAL Team One and SEAL Team Two. Willink was involved in missions such as seizing the Russian Tanker Volga-Neft-147 during Operation Iraqi Freedom. He eventually became a platoon commander and retired from the Navy after 20 years of service in 2010.

This military influencer started a podcast on YouTube in 2015. He started his YouTube channel eight years ago and now has 1.86 million subscribers with over 1 billion views. Willink has an active account on Instagram with 3.1 million followers.

5. Mat Best

Let’s get to know Mathew Alfred Best, the best American internet personality, entrepreneur, and former United States Army Ranger. He is a military influencer who joined the US Army shortly after graduating from high school.

He served five tours with the 2nd Ranger Battalion and then worked for the CIA. Now, he’s a funny YouTuber who made his movie and wrote a book about his military service, ‘Thank You for My Service.’ 

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He runs a funny YouTube channel targeting other military fellows, veterans, and gun enthusiasts. He started making videos in El Paso with a friend from the Air Force. His YouTube channel has 1.54 million subscribers with billions of views. This military influencer is also active on Instagram and has one million followers.

6. Rob Riggle

Who would have thought one of the best comedians in Hollywood had served in the US Army? Robert A. Riggle Jr. (born April 21, 1970) is an American actor, military influencer, stand-up comedian, and retired United States Marine Officer. Born in Louisville, Kentucky, Riggle joined the Marines in 1990 and worked his way up to the rank of lieutenant colonel.

This military influencer is mostly known for his universal comedic talent, notably as a correspondent on Comedy Central’s The Daily Show and a cast member on NBC’s Saturday Night Live. He’s also recognized for his role in ‘Modern Family’ and comedic performances in films like ‘Talladega Nights’ and ‘The Hangover.’

Riggle joined the Marines in 1990 to become a pilot but switched to his comedic career. He served in the Marine Corps Reserve and discussed his military experiences on The Daily Show. He visited Iraq in 2007 to report for the show and entertain troops with the USO. He now has an Instagram account with nearly 300K followers.

7. Kai Ryssdal

Allow us to introduce you to one of the most honorable military influencers, Kai Ryssdal (born October 8, 1963), an American radio journalist, host of Marketplace, and a business program that airs on weekdays on U.S. public radio stations. He also co-hosts the spinoff podcast Make Me Smart with Kimberly Adams.

Ryssdal has Norwegian roots and is from Briarcliff Manor, New York. As a child, he lived in England and Denmark before moving back to the U.S. He graduated from Emory University in 1985 with a degree in History and later earned a Master’s from Georgetown University in 1993.

This military social media influencer served eight years in the United States Navy, initially as a pilot flying the Northrop Grumman E-2 Hawkeye from the USS Theodore Roosevelt aircraft carrier. Later, he transitioned to a staff officer role at the Pentagon. After receiving his Master’s degree, he joined the U.S. Foreign Service, working in Ottawa, Canada, and Beijing, China.

Before his position on Marketplace, Ryssdal was a reporter and occasional host for The California Report on KQED-FM. He received awards from the Radio-Television News Directors Association and the National Public Radio News Directors Association for his radio work.

8. Martin E. Dempsey

Martin E. Dempsey
Martin E. Dempsey

This retired army general has served in the US Army for over 40 years, probably the longest time anybody could have served. Martin ‘Marty’ Edward Dempsey was born in New Jersey on March 14, 1952. He served as the 18th chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff from October 1, 2011, to September 30, 2015. 

Before that, he was the 37th chief of Staff of the Army. This military influencer also had various other high-ranking positions in the military, including Commanding General of the U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command and Acting Commander of U.S. Central Command. After his military career, he became a professor at Duke University and chairman of USA Basketball.

This military influencer isn’t active on any social media account but LinkedIn. Dempsey got married to his high school sweetheart, Deanie. They have three children: Chris, Megan, and Caitlin. All three served in the United States Army and are now married with children of their own. Chris continues to serve as a cavalry colonel to this day.

9. Tim Kennedy

Timothy Fred Kennedy, born September 1, 1979, is an American soldier, military influencer, and retired mixed martial artist. He fought professionally from 2001 to 2016, competing in organizations like the UFC, Strikeforce, and WEC. Kennedy is unique for serving in the United States Army while also pursuing his career as a professional fighter. Additionally, he’s a TV host, producer, and entrepreneur.

Tim Kennedy joined the Army in 2004, serving with the 7th Special Forces Group and deploying to Iraq and Afghanistan. In 2009, he moved to the Texas Army National Guard and served with the 19th Special Forces Group. He earned honors like the Bronze Star Medal and announced his return to the U.S. Army Special Forces in 2017.

Kennedy is one of the military social media influencers who co-owns a military clothing company named Ranger Up and co-founded another company named Save Our Allies, which helps people in battle areas. His account on YouTube has 168K subscribers and more than 50K views. This military influencer also has an account on Instagram with 1.5 million followers.   

10. Marcus Luttrell

The time has come to finally meet the last military influencer on our list. Born November 7, 1975, Marcus Luttrell is a retired U.S. Navy SEAL. He received the Navy Cross and Purple Heart for his bravery during Operation Red Wings in 2005, where he was the only survivor. Luttrell served for eight years in the Navy, reaching the rank of SO1. 

Luttrell co-hosts After Action, a TV show on TheBlaze where ex-special ops veterans discuss U.S. issues. Glenn Beck produces it. He has an active Instagram account with more than 700K followers, where you can follow the updated news.

Conclusion

Military influencers are connecting with their audiences worldwide by using social media. They share their experiences and challenges to connect with the same people they protect on battlefields. By following military influencers, you’ll learn to see everything from another perspective. 

FAQs

1. What YouTubers Served in The Military?

The most popular YouTubers who served in the military are Greg Plitt, CT Fletcher, Dave Castro, Josh Bridges, Rudy Reyes, and more.

2. Can The Military Have Instagram?

The U.S. military allows service members to use social media platforms like Instagram.

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