Major Estes enlisted in the Marine Corps Reserves in January 1993. Major Estes earned his Bachelor of Business Administration in Accounting from Clayton State University in Morrow, Georgia and was commissioned a Second Lieutenant through the Platoon Leaders Class in May 1997.
Upon completion of the Basic Officer Course (BOC) and Infantry Officer Course (IOC) Major Estes reported to 3rd Battalion, 2nd Marines, 2nd Marine Division in Camp Lejeune, North Carolina from October 1998 to January 2001. While assigned to India Company he served as: a Rifle Platoon Commander for Winter Mountain Warfare Training and Exercise Battle Griffin in Norway, as Company Executive Officer for the Unit Deployment Program in Japan, and as Company Commander for a Humanitarian Service Deployment for wild-lands firefighting in Montana. Upon return from the humanitarian mission Major Estes relinquished his command of India Company and served as the Battalion’s Assistant Operations Officer.
In January 2001, Major Estes reported to The Basic School in Quantico, Virginia where he served as a BOC Instructor, a Platoon Commander for Combat Instructor Company, and a Staff Platoon Commander. In April 2002 Major Estes was assigned to duty as an instructor at IOC. In September 2004, Major Estes attended the Expeditionary Warfare School (EWS).
In May 2005, Major Estes graduated from EWS and assumed command of Fox Company, 2nd Battalion, 2nd Marines, 2nd Marine Division in Camp Lejeune, North Carolina. In July 2005, Major Estes deployed with Fox Company for Operation Iraqi Freedom II until February 2006. From January to June 2007, Major Estes deployed on a 26th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) deployment as the Headquarters and Service Company Commander for Battalion Landing Team 2/2.
In July 2007, Major Estes reported to Monterey, California where he attended: the Naval Postgraduate School earning a Masters of Arts in National Security Affairs, the Naval War College Command and General Staff Course, and the Defense Foreign Language Institute Basic Tagalog Course. In September 2009 Major Estes reported to the U.S. Embassy Manila, Philippines where he served as a Joint Operations Planner for the Joint U.S. Military Assistance Group Philippines until August 2010.
In September 2010, Major Estes reported to 1st Marine Division in Camp Pendleton, California. From September 2010 to January 2011 he served as the Division Assistant Plans Officer. From January to July 2011, he deployed as an advisor with the Counterinsurgency Advisory and Assistance Team in support of Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan. Upon his return from Afghanistan, Major Estes joined 1st Battalion, 4th Marines where he served as the Executive Officer and deployed in support of the 31st MEU. In July of 2012 he assumed his current duties with the 11th MEU.