Will Bushelle was born on January 31, 1976, in Saint Louis, Missouri. He was an Eagle Scout and earned the Scout Honor Medal for saving a life when he was a teenager. He enlisted in the U.S. Navy on August 24, 1994, and completed basic training at NTC Great Lakes, Illinois, in October 1994. Bushelle next attended Electricians Mate A School from November 1994 to April 1995, followed by Basic Underwater Demolition/SEAL training at NAB Coronado, California, from June to December 1995. Petty Officer Bushelle completed Basic Airborne training at Fort Benning, Georgia, in January 1996, and then served with SEAL Team FOUR at NAB Little Creek, Virginia, from February 1996 until he left active duty and joined the Navy Reserve on August 23, 1999. While in the reserves he served with Naval Reserve SEAL Team EIGHT at NRC Gary, Indiana, and at NRC Great Lakes, Illinois, from March 1999 to December 2004, and during this time he completed his Bachelor of Science degree in Industrial Technology at Southern Illinois University at Carbondale. His next reserve assignment was with Naval Special Warfare Operational Support Team ONE (later redesignated SEAL Team 17) at NAB Coronado from January 2005 until his death in an automobile accident in Las Vegas, Nevada, on February 16, 2014. During this time, SO1 Bushelle was activated and deployed to Iraq in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom with SEAL Team FIVE in 2006 and 2007. In his civilian career after leaving active duty, Will worked for Boeing as a manufacturing engineer on the AC-130U Spectre gunship program, and he was working as an industrial engineer with GES Corporation in Las Vegas at the time of his death. He was a plankowner of SEAL Team 17, and was buried at Barrancas National Cemetery on NAS Pensacola, Florida.
His Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal w/Valor Citation reads:
For heroic achievement as turret gunner for Naval Special Warfare Task Unit-Habbaniyah, in direct support of Operation Iraqi Freedom from 19 October 2006 to 19 January 2007. Under constant threat from improvised explosive devices and other enemy attack, Petty Officer Bushelle displayed superb expertise and courage while conducting eleven combined NSW and Iraqi Army combat missions in the Al Anbar Province of Western Iraq. His tactical vigilance on multiple combat patrols ensured the safety of his unit. Petty Officer Bushelle's exceptional professionalism, unrelenting perseverance, and loyal devotion to duty reflected credit upon himself and were in keeping with the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service.