He and other members of his squad also participated in a Turning Blue ceremony the day before - a special tradition for infantry.
In addition to the usual nine weeks of basic training, McTighe went through an additional five weeks of specialized infantry training.
He is serving in the 10th Mountain Division, 1st Brigade, at Fort Drum, N.Y., as a combat soldier.
McTighe, 20, attended schools in Nevada City and graduated in 2009 from Nevada Union High School.
He is the son of Ted R. and Annette McTighe of Nevada City, who attended the graduation events.