Mena, former star of the website IBangPornstars.com, made headlines in 2007 when he left the adult industry for a position at the Surprise Tennis Complex in Surprise, Ariz. He was fired from that position because of his involvement with the adult industry and returned to the online industry as a performer for IBangPornstars.com.
He again left the industry earlier this year for the Army, undergoing basic training at Fort Sill in Oklahoma.
"I had a couple notable accomplishments during basic," Mena told AVN Online. "First, I was selected as a platoon leader. Only eight soldiers out of 240 are selected for leadership positions. And I was only one of two that actually kept our leadership position for the entirety of basic training. Everyone else got fired.
"Second, I shot 32 out of 40 targets on the Army Rifle Marksmanship test and was awarded a ‘Sharpshooter' badge," he continued. "I also received an ‘Expert' badge as a Grenadier scoring a perfect 7 out of 7 on the hand grenade combat course."
Mena admits that Army life is a far cry from the life he led in the industry. Rather than hang out with porn stars and film the action for the website, these days he lives in barracks with other men, wakes up at 4:30 a.m. for physical training and marches 8 to 15 kilometers each day carrying 50-60 pounds of equipment on his back.
There's been a period of adjustment, Mena said, and he understands that not everyone in or out of the industry agrees with his decision to leave adult.
"There will always be naysayers and critics that say you can't do things or whatever, but as has always been the case with me, most people aren't aware of my high level of motivation in any endeavor I set out on or goals I strive for," he said. "I've always believed there's nothing you can't do if you set your mind to it. Joining the Army at age 39? It's a huge challenge, but that's part of the reason I'm doing it. It's also a step toward redemption for me, to show what I am truly made of and that even people in the adult industry can be people of integrity and honor. What better place to display those values than in the Army?"
Once Mena completes his advanced training he will be assigned to a unit. He said it's unknown now if he will be stationed stateside or overseas.
Once he completes his service, though, he plans to return to college to pursue a degree in sociology.
"After that I would like to write a book and be a motivational speaker," he said. "I'd like to share the lessons I have learned and lived from my career as a tennis pro, business entrepreneur and now as a soldier with people who are interested and willing to listen. I am confident I know a thing or two about how to reach your goals, fulfill your dreams and live a fulfilling life."