Sgt Grit Marine Corps Merchandise

Welcome to our Marine Corps Newsletter archives. Here you can find USMC articles and memories sent in to us by fellow Jarheads and their families. Enjoy!

Sgt Grit Marine Corps Newsletter - August 3, 2002

I think these fit Marines: What we do in life echoes an eternity. Live so that you are not afraid of death, yet do not want to die. - Leo Tolstoy

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SGT Grit:
I was on my way to visit my daughter in North Jersey when I approached a broken down vehicle on the shoulder of the Jersey turnpike with the hood raised up. The pike is 12 lanes (6 each way) up north with cars and trucks whizzing by like crazy. As I approach the car I notice a Marine Corps bumper sticker so I immediately pulled over and backed up right in front of the broken down car. Inside was an older woman just sitting behind the wheel. As I approached her she rolled down the window. I told her I didn't know much about fixing cars but she was welcome to use my cell phone to call for help. With this she calls her husband I hear her tell him she has a flat tire. I immediately asked ask her if that was the only problem and she says "yes". My response was "Please pop the trunk and just tell your husband to stand by". Within 5 minutes the tire was changed and as I retrieved my phone the woman thanked me very much. I told her I had spotted the Marine Corps bumper sticker and stopped because a member of the Marine family was in distress. She said her husband had served as a Marine in WWII. I told her I had served from '67 to 71 with a tour in Vietnam and my son was currently a Marine SGT on Okinawa. My last words were "Be careful going home and tell your husband I said Semper Fidelis". The look on her face was priceless. Semper Fidelis, Tom Simpson USMC SGT 67-71


Sgt. Grit;
I have been reading your newsletter for several years now. I have read stories about how Marines remember their DI and the time spent in boot camp. I enlisted in the Marine Corps Reserve on September 22, 1957, my 17th birthday, with my parents’ permission. My two brothers had served in the Navy and were always joking about the Corps. I went to Parris Island on July 5th, 1958 after completing high school, Platoon 167, 1st Battalion. I remember my Senior Drill Instructor as if he was still standing in front of me today, SSgt. Gerald R. Milroy of Philadelphia, PA. He made it known that he was a Frozen Chosin Marine and was hard as nails. We had been at Parris Island for several weeks when we were formed for going onto the parade field on the 1st battalion side. This was the same time that Jackie Gleason was popular on TV and famous for his “Away We Go” skit that he did. Well, SSgt Milroy had taken the guidon bearer off to the side and talked to him for a few minutes while we waited at attention, we had our M-1’s issued by then. After doing a right face and right shoulder arms, the DI said “Forward March”. As soon as he said, that the guidon bearer did the Jackie Gleason “And Away We Go” routine and a slick side step just as Jackie Gleason did. We were in tears for about 15 minutes before we could continue marching. I met SSGT Milroy again after I came on active duty about early 1966 at MCAS, Cherry Point just before going to Vietnam for the first tour of duty there. We talked for several minutes before I had to leave. It was the best time I had when I met him again. Semper Fi
GySgt Robert K. Otto, USMC, Ret’d 1957 – 1960 USMCR 1961 – 1980 USMC


Sgt. Grit: I red most every item sent in and I don't see too many that go back too far..maybe I'll get a few to write in..I had five daughters and I know damn well what happens with that of the main reasons I was able to put up with some it was due to the Corps and the many things they teach you beside having a good trigger finger.My daughter laughed so hard at some of his comments she had tears rolling down her cheeks..aside from that I feel most "old timers" can stay in shape by following this advice.. get up at 6am..have a small a routine of excerises..just as you did in the Corps..walk a short or long distance( no field pack) ..have a lite lunch..(bowl of soup & sandwich)...small portions at dinner..not like a glutton..finish the day off with NO snacks and chase your wife around the house before bedtime..I weighed 189 pounds before I made up my mind to do this routine and now I can control my weight within 2 pounds I'm down to 170..and you don't need equipment to do this..I'm over 70, a few years, and when I finish doing 30 push ups.."bragging" but true it makes you want to get a good day started..most of the guy's in our league detachment look pretty good and we have about 15 or 20 over 70..We have one member that landed on Iwo and we all wish we could look as good as him..We don't think he eats at all..You should see him in his blues at the Birthday Ball..a perfect example of a true Marine..anyhow..take care of yourselve as the Corps did of you and thank God your still here to do many of the things you want to. Many are not.All you can do for them is to pray for them.Sometimes we forget. Semper Fi Walt Kozier 2nd div. 8th Marines FMF 1946


I've played a lot of roles in life; I've met a lot of men, I've done a lot of things I'd like To think I wouldn't do again. And though I'm young, I'm old enough To know someday I'll die. And to think about what lies beyond, Beside whom I would lie. Perhaps it doesn't matter much; Still if I had my choice, I'd want a grave 'mongst Marines when At last death quells my voice. I'm sick of the hypocrisy Of lectures of the wise. I'll take the man, with all the flaws, Who goes, though scared, and dies. The troops I knew were common men; They didn't want the war; They fought because their fathers and Their fathers had before. They cursed and killed and wept; God knows....they're easy to deride. But bury me with men like these; They faced the guns and died. It's funny when you think of it, The way we got along. We'd come from different worlds To live in one where no one belongs, I didn't even like them all; I'm sure they'd all agree. Yet I would give my life for them, I know some did for me. So bury me with Marines, please, Though much maligned they be. Yes, bury me with Marines, for I miss their company. We'll not soon see their likes again; We've had our fill of war. But bury me with men like them, Till someone else does more. SEMPER FIDELIS Author Unknown Submitted by: Sgt. Wolf aka Bob Rader


As I continue sliding along the life-death continuum there is a preference to stay healthy. With exercise there is no desire to be a "hunk" nor is it done out of all the present day advice to do so. There is no way that, ever after all these years, I wish to look like a fat bellied civilian slob as it is simply that "We are proud to claim the title of United States Marine." No matter what is worn, what nature has bestowed upon us in the passing of many years since leaving the grinder, I will "walk the walk and talk the talk" of a United States Marine. "All right ladies, bends and motha's-give me twenty" :-) FrankT.


able, baker, charlie, dog, easy, fox, george, howe, item, joker, king......ahhh,, ahhh, .......
.............x-ray, yellow, zebra. Bob Rader


I opened my e-mail to "Marines aren't happy unless they are bitchin" and got a chuckle out of it because I had talked to my son earlier tonight and he was just a bitchin'. He is a Corporal stationed in Camp LeJuene, N.C. where he serves in the 2nd Force Recon Co., I went on to read the other e-mails sent and it was nice to see a letter from another Marine Mom.( My license plates read USMCMOM ) and I have the bumper stickers, T-shirts, etc. to show off the fact that I am a Marine Mom and proud of it and extremely proud of my son. My stint in the Marines didn't start with my son, but the significance of how important and how honorable being a Marine is was brought to a new level when he graduated from MCRD. I was born to an "Old Marine", my father served 21 years in the Corps, he got up every morning and went to his job, to me it was no different than anyone else's father who got up and went to work every day, yea sometimes he would go to work and come back 12-18 months later (he served two tours in Vietnam, a tour in Japan), and we moved every three years, but hey what did I know, it was all I had ever experienced. My father had 5 brothers, 4 of them served in the Marine Corps. My father was a Drill Instructor at MCRD while his brother was in basics, out of the 5 boys, 4 of them served in Vietnam at the same time. My only k his life, his wife Dana was also a Marine. My youngest sister married a Marine who is also a Desert Storm Veteran. My father was the State Commander for Iowa VFW and now has another title and oversees two different states to ensure that all Vets get what is rightfully theirs, and trust me when he is fighting for the right of the Vets his old Drill Instructor persona has no trouble showing up. I know it sounds like I am bragging about the history of Marines in my family, well I am, but it took my son to walk across the parade grounds for me to see the significance of what my family has risked and given to this country to keep us safe and free, I am proud and grateful to all those whom have served this great country....KEEP UP THE GOOD WORK
Forever in my Prayers.......Marine Mom


Dear Sergeant Grit: I am extremely proud of my association and service with the Marines, but I have to take issue with one little-known negative result of our arduous training. This is not a serious matter, but I feel it should serve as a caveat for all those who entertain ideas of golfing with Marines.
First of all, the items in a typical Marine's golf bag are not things which would be sanctioned by the PGA. Oh sure, they carry the usual assortment of clubs, but also throw in some additional equipment, all of which is standard issue for a typical Marine rifle squad and weapons platoon.
Even the golf bags Marines carry is atypical of that carried by the average golfer. Marines refer to their bag as a "Duffle/field marching pack w/amphibious vehicle, portable, olive drab, one each."
Not content to use conventional clubs off the tee, Marines prefer to use what they call "Bellow Woods", huge clubs which when they slice or hook and land in the woods cause wildlife hiding there to bellow in fear.
Marines never yell "FORE!". Instead, they yell "Fire in the hole!", which unnerves civilian players. If there are any other Marines on the course, however, one can hear an encouraging "OO-Rah!" off in the distance, and some demolitions veteran yell "Boy, I got a bang out of that one!"
Never tell a Marine golfer he is faced with a bunker, especially if he is in a foursome. Marines do not golf in foursomes, but in fire teams, and if you inform them a bunker is ahead of them, they get on line, fire and maneuver to the bunker's precipice, throw in a WP grenade, douse the obstacle with a flame thrower, and toss in a satchel charge, using the old blind 'em, burn 'em and blast 'em technique. Although effective in leveling fairways to provide a more golfer-friendly surface, it does cause traumatic effects on subterranean species such as prairie dogs, ferrets, ground squirrels and night crawlers sympathetic to al-Queda terrorists. This technique also greatly inflates green fees.
It's also wise etiquette when golfing with Marines not to point out water hazards. Producing pre-fabbed amtracks out of their bags, the Marines will slap them together and roar off into the water, lock and load their shootin' irons at the line of departure and lay down a suppressing fire of golf balls onto the green.
Sand traps seem to attract Marine golfers, although they prefer using e-tools to extricate the golf ball from the sand, rather than conventional clubs, and their enthusiasm is boundless. When a Marine golfer lands in a sand trap, he grabs his entrenching shovel, yells "Hit the beach!", and soon has sand and golf balls flying in all directions.
The more menacing the golf hazard, the more the Marine golfer enjoys it. Even when confronted with greens surrounded by coral reefs and piranha-infested lagoons filled with man-eating crocodiles, Marines treat the experience as a lark, making light-hearted quips such as "Man, that lagoon was no problem a-toll", or "You say this was a tough hole? That's a crock!". Oftentimes, Marines are seen walking away from such a place wearing a new pair of alligator golf shoes, made from real alligators.
Marine golfers never use tees on a golf course. As a matter of fact, golf tees are about the only thing Marines shy away from when it comes to golf. When asked why, most Marines will explain "Well, this fella says I should use golf tees because they will support my balls when I drive, but I took one look at them pointy things and figured there's no way I'm going to put something like that inside my skivvies, especially when I'm bouncing around trying to steer a Humvee."
When one is finally on the green, never ask a Marine if he wants you to pull the pin before he putts. Usually he will give you a look reserved for those in line for a Section-8 and growl, "Hell, no. You want the g*dd*m ground to explode?"<
To those unfamiliar with Marine tradition, probably the most distracting and mis-understood aspect of golfing with Marines is the big fuss they make after they finish a hole. They insist on replacing the flag as a group, never taking the chance they might miss out on a great photo-op.
The greatest Marine golfer known to the public is, of course, Lee Trevino. Because of PGA rules, Mr. Trevino had to adapt to the style of play of regular golfers. True to his Marine Corps heritage, however, he always sported his weathered and worn boot-camp issue boondockers while on tour, instead of regular golf shoes. Other professionals derided his grungy-looking footwear, but not for long. While his competitors bogeyed, Trevino boogied with birdies. After winning scores of major tournaments, he revealed the secret of his successful career to astonished sportswriters.
"I golf so well, because I am like my old Marine Corps shoes. While making my way around the golf course, I know I'll always have a hole in one."
So, be advised all golfers who wish to golf with Marines: what you have just read may explain the erratic behavior we might display on the golf course, and prepare you for any surprises.
And remember, just like this story, we Marines may never had a perfect lie, but we always have a good one.
Semper Fi, Bob Colclasure Captain, USMC l968-l972


Sgt. Grit, I thought I'd let you know about my dreams regarding recruit training and, at least to a certain degree, their fulfillment. As you already know from previous messages and discussions, my dream of ever becoming a MARINE will never be realized. (For those who don't know, MEPS wouldn't let me in due to injuries sustained in an automobile accident.) However, in May I saw three of my former students off to MCRD. Another followed a few weeks later. The three who left together are scheduled to graduate from recruit training on Aug 23. Although our first day of school this year is Aug 22, I've already notified our high school office that I will need a substitute for the first two days of school, because I will be in San Diego for their graduation. The administration has agreed to this arrangement and my trip is already scheduled. I must say that I can't wait to see this event. Imagine, three of my "kids" from the past school year graduating from MCRD on the same day! This will make 5 MARINES from our high school in the past 5 months, and somewhere in the neighborhood of 17 MARINES since our first graduating class in 1983. I'm very proud of the USMC heritage our school has developed and hope that it will continue. David Bounds History Teacher Little Axe HS, Norman, OK


Hey There Sgt. Grit! I don't think that there's another service that argues so long and loud about what they wish to be called. Most folk long for their discharge, and are happy to be on their way, but not us Marines. We agree that an "ex-Marine" is that sh*tbird who lost their title because they committed some serious breach of honor, but as for the rest of us, it would be difficult to tell, through the written word, which of us are active duty, and which served in past days of glory. Ah well, that's the nature of a Marine, perhaps not as lean, perhaps not as mean, but still a blessed Marine! But wait, there's more... Like Yankee Doodle in the minds of the British, we have taken all of the names given to us by our would-be detractors, and turned them into monikers of honor: jarhead, jughead, Gyrene, li'l green amphibious monsters, big green amphibious monsters, bootnecks, leathernecks, etc. Semper Fi to all! Sgt. B.


Dear Sgt., In response to Audry, who's husband is stationed in Camp Pendleton as an 0311. I resent the fact that you refer to us "POGs" as Marines who want to be grunts but don't think we can hack it. That is complete BS!!! First of all, every Marine IS a basically trained rifleman. I myself am a "POG". No, I'm not a "hardCorps grunt", sorry. I am an Arabic linguist that intercepts signals and translates everything so the grunts can go in and tear sh*t up. Not to mention in about 6 months I am gonna start training for Radio Recon school. No, my pt might not be the best. No, my rifle score isn't an expert, hell it isn't even sharpshooter. I'll tell you one thing though, when the sh*t hits the fan, I'd like to see you pack up your Alice pack, get on ship, float out to Afghanistan, and sit in a hole 5 months with nothing but your M-16, a few MRE's and your buddy and wait for the next Taliban soldier to come out of his hole so you can kill him just so your family can be safe at home. You are in the military. Why can't you shoot expert, why cant you keep up with the best during a run. We all have our part in the mission. Everyone is qualified for their part. Yeah, us Marines might poke fun of each other because one of us is better at one thing than another, but it makes no difference. And what's this complaining about t-shirts. Material things don't matter. It's the heart, and Esprit de Corps. People are always bitchin' about this and that. I might still be in training (for 2 years I might add) but I have learned a lot from fleet returnees and I have to say, it doesn't matter what your MOS is, we are all still Marines and we all play our part in the war against the world's evil. Even the other services. I think you just need to understand the purpose of everyone in the United States military and not look at someone less just because they can't shoot expert on the range or might need some help running. My D.I. at boot camp told us that a Marine is someone who does the best at everything he does. This is all that matters. That's what Marines are. hard charging motherf**kers that care nothing more than pushing past the limit to protect the world against evil. I think you have to judge yourself before you start judging others. LCpl Brobst MCD Defense Language Institute Monterey, Ca
Sgt. Grit,
Why is it that every newsletter I get from you is great, with one exception? There is always that one person that just does not quite get it. This time there is a wife of a Marine talking about my fellow Marines. Audrey in no way has earned the right to speak poorly of a Marine, marrying a Marine is great as Marine wives do in fact have one of the toughest jobs in the world, but that does not make her a Marine. She has not walked across the grinder to earn the title. Further, if in fact she would have made the sacrifice and served her country as a Marine, she would have been one of the pongees that she spoke so poorly of. Speaking as someone that has served with an infantry battalion and an air wing squadron (comm Marines see it all) I can tell you from first hand experience that there are plenty of $h!tbirds that are grunts, just as there are in the pouge ranks. There are fit mechanic and over weight grunts. I have seen more than one infantryman shoot marksman, in fact I had the honor of being on the firing line next to a sniper that qualified by one whole point. I was not an infantryman, but never shot anything other than expert. You see, the MOS does not make the Marine, the man makes the Marine (or woman for some of you) It does not matter what job someone has, they are all serving, and doing so makes them a hero to me. I value each and every cook just as much as I value an 0311. And Audrey, next time you talk to your husband about things you could never understand, ask him what he thinks of helo mechanics. Then think, if they were not very good at what they do, if they did not take great pride in the fact they make aircraft older than them fly, he would not be talking to you. If not for their devotion the helo he flew on last could have very easily crashed. Ask him what he thinks of supply guys. Then ask him what he would think if they were not there to give him ammo in a war zone. You see, infantrymen are great. I love each and every one of them. But it takes a combined effort to make them effective. The Marine Corps fights as a Marine Air Ground Task Force for a reason. Please show some respect to those men and women that work just as hard as any infantryman. Semper Fi. Cpl James Bell .........
Sgt Grit, Although I usually read some articles and have my opinion I have never felt as strongly opposed to something said on the newsletter as I did by the article submitted in the last newsletter by a lady named Audrey, I believe the article was titled "Now I Disagree". I'd just like to say to Audrey, Thank you Audrey, thank you for supporting your Marine husband and for being proud of him. BUT, and there is always a but...I am highly irritated by your other comments on Marines..whether they are POGS or grunts or whatever. First off, I am an 0151, yes, I am a POG as you call me Audrey...and you know what? I am dam proud of it, I'm proud that I always treat every Marine that comes in with an admin problem whether it be their pay, promotion, or other admin problems, as if their problem is the most important and assure them it will get fixed. I am proud that I am a high pft'er, that my uniform is always squared away and I keep my younger Marines on the ball. Second point, I have a lot of respect for Marines that have much more dangerous MOS's such as our grunts and radio operators to name a few. They have all my respect because in one thing I agree with you Audrey is that yes, not everyone can be a grunt, some wish they were, but some just can't or wouldn't like that way of life. Although I have many friends that are grunts and almost married one, I've heard plenty of stories where grunts have gone bad...don't get me wrong, I'm not ragging on grunts...but I would like to make a logical point Audrey. We are Marines, but we are all human as well (as much as us Marines don't like to accept that!). You say that you hardly see grunts falling out of runs? Well I say this, I don't care if your a grunt, a POG, or work in the wing...I don't look at that Marine falling out and feel disgust. I give that Marine the benefit of the doubt...did you bother to think that maybe that Marine recuperating from an injury or just had a baby or is just a poor runner but they are still out there trying to get back into shape? Yes I get some lazy ones that slip through the cracks here and there, but to just call out POGS is wrong. And Audrey, have you heard that practice makes perfect?? Well a grunt gets practice with weapons everyday Audrey...that is what they eat, breathe, and sleep...unlike all the other Marines who POGS or any other mos...I don't know about everyone else...but we only get to use the M16 two weeks out of the year to yea, we might be rusty when it comes down to being at the range. But I do see countless number of Marines working on their positions during grass week right through chow, I have seen the motivation in fellow Marines when it comes to going to the range because we don't get to do that kind of stuff on a regular basis...we hardly get quotas to do anything that has to with weapons...the one SOCEX I got to participate in I had to act as a civilian! I didn't even wear my uniform! So, yea we get excited about being on the range...many of us work our butts off trying to get comfortable with the positions so we can get better scores and better ourselves as Marines in the one week we get to fire our weapon. I have NEVER heard any Marine, complaining POG or not, about how our rifle scores shouldn't be counted in for our promotion points...if anything we try harder cause we know that the better we shoot the better the chance of getting promoted. And for those who have, shame on them. You can consider me a boot as I have only been in for about 3 years...but my view on the Marine Corps is that we are a team no matter what...that's how we accomplish our mission everyday. We all work together on and off the battlefields. And yes we might have our little rivalries amongst us, but all in all I think it's all in good fun and we still support each other. I have one question for you Audrey, did you bother to stop one of those Marines running by the Naval hospital and ask if in fact they were POGS?? No?? But yet you are sure of that...hhhmmm..interesting...well Audrey, you might be surprised cause they could have been your fellow Seamen since a lot of them p.t. in that area. Whatever the case maybe Audrey, your comments were not welcomed by this Marine and many other non-POGS who I shared your comments with, yes Audrey, even grunts. Even if I wasn't a POG I'd still be as irritated. I'll take criticism from another fellow Marine any day...I'll take a butt-chewing from another Marine...but not from you Audrey...but then again I wouldn't expect you to understand me and my fellow brothers and sisters Audrey, you never have had the privilege to earn the right to wear our uniforms, you haven't gone through our special bond at boot camp, you just don't know Audrey...because you chose something were in the Navy. I apologize to everyone for making this so long...but when I have to say something I get it all out, no beating around the freakin bush. Semper Fi, Corporal America X. Zarate
p.s. Audrey I know you were just stating your opinion from what you have seen, but if you want I'll show you what this POG is made of...either we can take a run or if you'd like we can go at it at the rifle range....your choice. = )


Sgt Grit: Thanks for the fine job you do in keeping Marines informed and thinking. The issue of saluting is a lot like giving a gift. It is easy to give hard to receive, but sometimes just the opposite. As an officer I would salute a junior on the assumption he had already saluted me. The act always was confounding to the other person and I hope it made them think that they were saluting the system not the man. In civilian life I always try to greet a person I meet along the way with a big GOOD MORNING. Doesn't cost a thing and you know quickly if you have met friend or foe. There are no X or former Marines. I am Marine and always will be. Marines made good men better and the few bad ones we can forget about. Semper Fidelis, Joe Tirrell, Korean era ........
This is in reference to the "Old Gunny" telling the young 2ndlt how long he had been in the Corps, and "I don't owe you s***" In my days, had I been that young 2ndLt, I would have informed that "Old Corps Smart*ss Sgt" that he at least owed me a salute, or 30 days brig time on Article 15 NJP. I would have run him up in a minute !! Harold Slawson TSgt (1949-1958) ..........
Sgt Grit,
With the advent of all of the stories relating to saluting, I thought the readers might enjoy this one. While going through MCCES schools at MCB 29 Palms in '71 we had to march to class. Every morning we would form up at the barracks and the class NCO (actually a LCPL) would take muster and then on to class. Coincidentally, every morning two LTs would walk down the street in front of the barracks, the formation would be called to attention, and the appropriate salutes rendered. This went on for two days before we "snuffies" started to use our ingenuity. On the third day we stretched in a single file (about 20 of us) approximately 30 paces apart and as these two LTs walked down the street each of us individually rendered a proper salute. By the time they got to the end of the line they were just about ready to fall down from laughing. Funny but everyday after that they walked on the other side of the road and never came near our formation. GySgt K (70-88)


Hey Sarg: First, let me say, THANKS! Your newsletter has helped bring all of us together. Welcome Home Marines! A couple of months ago I wrote of my efforts over the years to locate a Marine I served with in Vietnam. We made contact. Let me share some of the events which led up to this reunion. Initially I called the Veterans Administration (VA) and submitted the appropriate forms and two letters; one explaining why I wished to reach Emil F. Domines, and the other to Emil, which the VA would forward to him. The letters were sent to the Los Angeles, CA Regional VA Office for processing. As of this writing Emil has yet to receive the letter. Some things about the VA haven't changed. However, we can always (Semper) rely on our brother Marines. I shared my frustrations with some fellow Marines via email. One of my brother Marines jumped on the Internet and came up with three names listed as Domines in the L.A. area. I called the first one. A women's voice on the answering machine gave the standard name, rank and serial number instructions. I told the machine who I was and why I called. I was getting jumpy. You know, when contact is imminent and you just need to get it done. The impatience was overwhelming. I called the next number on the list. A woman answers. I give the standard introduction that I've given dozens of times during this search. She hesitates and starts to cry. This woman is Emil's sister. We swapped half a dozen phone numbers, email addresses, wives and kids names, blood types, serial numbers. You name it. I wasn't about to break contact NOW. Later that night or should I say morning 12:30 a.m. to be exact the phones rings. If you're like me only bad news comes from such late calls. Well! This was not to be the case. The young woman calling from California 9:30 p.m. identified herself as Emil's daughter. We spoke for 45 minutes. I cannot tell you what it meant. Of course, you know. We caught up on family lives and histories not known. The story gets longer, but suffice it to say Emil and I eventually spoke a day later. I reached him in Ohio. Don't ask, why Ohio? We talked for 97 minutes. How do I know? I finally got the phone bill. The best investment ...! We've already exchanged an email and plan to meet.
This brings me to some final remarks. In this issue of your Newsletter Sarge, Stan Long (E Co 2/7, 69-70) mentioned walking out 12-13 klicks after 7th Marines stood down from Vietnam. Echo 2/7 is planning its Second Reunion in 2003. Here is some information. If you would be kind enough to publish it in your Newsletter.
Reunion E Co. 2/7 Memphis, TN 19-22 June 2003 (Thursday -Sunday) Holiday Inn Select Reservations: 901-682-7881 Contact: William Dyer, USMC (Ret) 904-786-4116 or email: Be sure to ask about the BBQ and swim party and Reunion T-Shirts.
There I go grabbing too much air time. Anyway my fellow Marines, don't give up. Find the guys you served with. By the way Emil knows the location of some more guys from our unit. It's gonna be one hell of a party. Don't quit, don't ever, ever quit trying. It only took me thirty-five years to find Emil ... not so bad. "SEMPER FI", my brothers. "Iron Mike" Watson, Sgt. of Marines, RVN 67-68.
Note: Sgt Grit's "Buddy Search" ..........
Too further exemplify what the Marine Corps family really means to us Jarheads, I served in VietNam in 66. We were in a pretty heavy fire fight and a friend was shot in the leg. We immediately put him on a chopper and that was the last time I saw him. Two months ago I tracked him down, I called him, told him who I was and the first thing he said to me was "are you mad at me" too which I responded "my god what for?" "because I left you guys" He had carried false guilt for 35 years. That's a Marine! Perry W.


My Son is Recruit Michael Johnson who is currently enjoying Boot Camp at Parris Island. He has just started his 3rd phase of training when I got this poem sent to me. Thought all of you who have been there would enjoy this. The poem is entitled: Happy Days.
Happy Days are days at the Beach. Happy Days are days when you eat way too much. Happy Days are times you got plenty of sleep. Happy Days are being with friends. Most of all Happy Days are the times you spend with family. Happy Days are not to be taken for granted. Happy Days are taken for granted. While in Boot Camp at Parris Island, those happy days were "truly" happy days.
Thank you for your newsletters. I am truly enjoying them. Dot Johnson, Recruit Johnsons Mom.
As a Woman Marine I wanted to assure Capt. Donnerstaq that the poem "Spirit of a Man" was not offensive to Women Marines. It was an outstanding poem that I greatly enjoyed reading. I understand what it says and I know what it means because I went to Parris Island just like he did. I'm proud of my Brothers in the Corps and proud to be a sister to such great men. What a legacy! What a family! There's nothing else like the USMC. To quote a line from the mouse pad sitting next to me, The Change is Forever. Patriotism and honor run deep in the hearts and minds of women too!
In the Marine Corps you are Marine, before you are a man or woman, and that's just the way I like it. On my own time, there's no doubt that I'm a woman-feminine, female, the whole package. When on duty, however, there's no doubt I'm a Marine. Working shoulder to shoulder with other Marines, not considered, treated, nor acting like a distraction or a liability, a problem or a curse...I'm A Marine, Baby! And there's no better feeling on this earth than to be one of the Fewer, the Prouder, Women Marines! Love the newsletter, love the merchandise, love the gutsy, hard-chargers who write in. Hello to my drill instructors from 1987 wherever they are today: SSgt Hilinski, Sgt Jameson, Sgt Bellis...Semper Fi! (Sgt Jameson, you terrified me and ticked me off, but I'll never forget you nor how you stayed on my case until I EARNED the title that I came to P.I. to claim, U.S. Marine!) M. Wilkerson (now Williams) Melanie Williams


Just a thought concerning military protocol, I attended my sisters graduation from Navy boot in San Diego in '71. I was fresh back from the 'Nam and decided to impress my sister. My wife and I show up at NTC in full formal dress. I (SSgt.)in my blues with all medals and sword, and my wife in full formal gown. We walked the breezeway at NTC on the way to the parade deck and Navy recruits were literally diving off the walkway to get out of our way. Even a few Chiefs were seen to start to bend the elbow when they saw me. I used to cut a fairly impressive figure then, 6'5", 275lbs. with cover and shoes, close to 7'. It seemed that all the yelling that the Navy boys had heard from across the fence everyday, must have left an impression on them since just about everybody on the base was trying to salute me. I don't think I have ever walked taller than I did that day along with my Marine wife. My sister was so impressed that all her friends were afraid to come over and talk to us. Semper Fi, not as lean but ALWAYS a Marine. '67-'77


I beg your pardon Lcpl Klein. Corporals are the backbone of the U.S. Marine Corps - always have been and always will be. That stripe on a corporals leg isn't just a piece of cloth - it was earned by the blood of many a Marine enlisted men. Don't ever think that the Corps, or the world for that matter could do without USMC Privates, PFC's, L/Corporals, and Corporals. Chesty would have your head for thinking his corporals didn't account for much - his corporals were his lifeline; they are the ones who kept things together and moving ahead - still are! Hold your head up and dismiss that idea - you couldn't be more wrong! I never met a Lcpl that I didn't respect - and I never will! I'll bet you'll never meet an officer that disrespects the rank of Corporal (or L/cpl) either! If you ever do I will personally unscrew his head and screw it back on in the proper position!
Semper Fi Corporal SSGT D.W. Uselton 2529614 Still Lean and Still Mean to carry on! "There are no EX-MARINES"


My husband Ed was a Marine in Vietnam in 1969-70. He's had a rough couple of years with his health, rheumatoid arthritis, and prostate cancer. With every day he struggles to keep his life as normal as he can. The cancer seemed to take it's toll on him the worst even though he has no cancer at this moment, he was told he was a high risk patient. surgery, radiation and drug therapy is holding it off for the moment. Please keep him in everyone's thoughts and pray for him to keep free of the cancer. He's a tough guy but this has shakened him, as bad as Vietnam. thanks Pat


Sgt Grit, While attending a family reunion my Grandson, who is 11 yrs old, was talking with an uncle about some of his ambitions in life. He mentioned what he'd like to be and schooling, etc. He said he thought he might go to the Military Service first as a start. The Uncle, who had served in the Navy, said he should think about joining the Navy where he could learn a skill or trade and still plan on school when he got out. My Grandson told him "nah, my Grandfather would kill me if I didn't join the Marines" (his Father, my Son, was a Marine-now deceased). The legend lives on.
P.S. We recently lost a WWII American Native Marine, Kenneth "Booger" Edmo of the Shoshone-Bannock Indian Tribe. Shortly after his return from the war he sustained an injury that forced him to walk about 1/3 stooped over for the remainder of his life. In all the yrs I've known him he never uttered a word of complaint or self-pity. Must have been the MARINE in him. Semper Fi - Cpl Stan Brangham 53-55
Dear Sgt. Grit, I just recently married a Marine, which is very ironic seeing as how I was raised by one. Growing up I thought my dad was really mean and way to strict on me and my brothers. Today I am raising my child and I couldn't be more grateful for the values and pride that my dad instilled in me as I was growing up. My dad raised me to always hold my head high, respect others, be honest, but most of all be grateful that I was an American and allowed to live in a country where you are free to be an individual. I am raising my eleven year old daughter with the same values and pride. I feel as though I have the best Marine that there ever was or will ever be. He is not my daughters biological dad, but to see them together you would not know this. He is raising her too, in the same manner that my father raised me. I wish that everyone could be as lucky as me and my have two great Marines to love and care for them. I believe that America would be an even better place to call home if we could all be raised and loved by a Marine. My husband and my dad, as well as all who have served and will serve in The Corps., you are my heroes and I am grateful that God created such great men and women to protect and serve this great land that I so proudly call, home. Semper Fi God Bless America and our Marine Corps., Brandie Grant, proud wife of Cpl. Michael D. Grant and daughter of Sgt. Robert M. Cluff
Dear P.F.C. Thompson, I know you are wondering who the hell I am. No we have never met, We will probably never meet. The only thing we have in common is we’re both Marines. About 50 years ago for me, and we served in the same outfit. H&S Co 1st Tank Bn,1st Marine Division, I&O section.
If you were around for the Changing of Command ceremony in June, you would have seen me. I was the old Marine wearing the old HBT’s uniform. Anyways the reason I’m writing is because of your letter in Sgt. Grits newsletter. I have to agree with you about the old Corps and the new Corps. The old Corps did what they were trained to do. And we did it with what equipment we had.
Today the new Corps, which you and your buddies belong to, are much smarter, better trained, better equipped, and in better shape than we were. Today, the technical world has passed us old timers by. I’m glad that we have a Marine Corps that have people like you in it. It takes guts to come back after nine years and go through boot camp a second time. Semper Fi Marine.
If you are still around for the next Changing of Command ceremony next year, look me up. I’ll be the old guy in the old uniform. If you want to write or email, here is my email address. Take care, catch you later Sgt George Connors 53-57, 1st Tank Bn. 1st Mar Div Korea


thought you might like this one, I wrote it myself and this proves grunts can read and write!!! Not as lean, Still as mean, Always a Marine SEMPER FI
I sit here in the darkness, Staring through my sights Waiting for my target to move into the light I hear the hammer fall and the bullet takes its flight Another target hits the ground, on a cold and lonely night
I try not to think about it, and act like I don't care I try to let the vision go, of the young man standing there. Did he have a family, and if so should I care He fired rounds that killed Marines, thats why I was there.
I was there to do my job, and fire my rounds true To make sure he can't hurt another And protect the ones like you
So with my rifle in my hand, I stalk across the land I am a Marine Corps Sniper, I don't think you'll understand. Why I do the things I do, What makes me take the shot Why I spent my whole life doing, the things that most would not.
For my country and my Corps, I'd gladly give my life >From ocean shores to desert sands, I'll take up any fight. So you can live in freedom, and enjoy your life of peace. I stand here and protect you all, Nothing I ask for me.
Semper Fi. mike f. A Co. 1/3


Dear Sgt Grit: A project for the USMC Historical Division is seeking written and oral histories of service and civilian personnel who participated as operators in the MARS (Military Affiliated Radio System) program. Although the main focus is Navy/Marine Corps MARS during the Vietnam Era, contributions from all services and all eras are welcome and encouraged.
In addition, if you used the MARS systems to communicate with your families or others, using either phone patches (Over!) or MARSGRAMS, please contact us.
We are also seeking artifacts for the exhibit (at MCRD San Diego, MARSGRAMS, pictures of stations and personnel, orders (DNC-8) etc. Please submit your MARS service dates, stories, etc., to: via email: Via snail mail: Borgman Group Ltd. 3342 South Sandhill Road Suite 9-326 Las Vegas, NV 89121


My favorite tattoo is my brand new Eagle, Globe & Anchor on my right shoulder. I received this fine art work on Memorial Day of this year. It was something I had always wanted and after almost 20 years and one X - wife, I finally got it. Semper Fi, Sammy Willis , Cpl 1979 - 1983 .......... You asked what is the best tattoo -- It's U S M C on your forearm of course!!! Semper Fi J Blair Raftree, Cpl 2232250


many of you know that grit and I have been best friends for over thirty years and I am here to tell you he practices what he preaches. When he returned back from Vietnam, I was still in the corps. While in Vietnam I had become good friends with his family . His sister and I had always talked and corresponded by mail. One day while visiting oklahoma I asked grits sister out on a date to which she said yes. I went back to grits house to get cleaned up and he started. She likes this, she likes that, do this, do that. Finally, we walked out to the car and he asked if I had the money, the directions and all.....then he put his arm around me and wished me well and then whispered in my ear......."touch her and I'll kill you". i still remember the handshake at the end of the evening!!!!! So you see, the ten things about your daughters dating applies to sisters also .........
Note: This application will be incomplete and rejected unless accompanied by a complete financial, job history, lineage and current medical report from your doctor. Please be prepared to submit additional information like a psychological profile and polygraph as required.
Name ::::::____ Date of Birth ::: Height :____ Weight ::_ I.Q. ::: G.P.A. :__ Social Security Number :::__ Driver's License Number ::___ Boy Scout Rank :::: Home Address ::::___ City :___ State :_ Zip :____ Do you have one male and one female parent? :: If NO, explain: ::::____ How fast can you run 40 yards? :____ How fast can you run two miles?:___ Do you own any of the following? A van :: A truck with oversized tires :: A waterbed ::Do you have an earring: :__ A nose ring? :__ A navel ring? :__ A tattoo? :_ (Note: If you answered YES to ANY of these questions, discontinue application and leave the premises). * In 50 words or less, what does LATE mean to you? * In 50 words or less, what does DON'T TOUCH MY DAUGHTER mean to you? * In 50 words or less, what does ABSTINENCE mean to you? Church you attend? ::::___ How often do you attend? ::: When would be the best time to interview your Father, Mother, and Minister? ::::__ * * * * * * * * * * * Answer by filling in the blanks. Please answer freely. All answers will be confidential. (That means, I won't tell anyone). * If I were shot, the last place I would want to be wounded is the ::::::___ * If I were beaten, the last bone I would want to be broken is my ::::::___ * A woman's place is in the :::::: * The one thing I hope this application doesn't ask me is :::::::____ * In the unfortunate event of my death, I would like:____ to be contacted. * My greatest fear is :::::::::__ * When I first meet a girl, the one thing I notice is her ::: (Note: If the answer to this question starts with a "B," discontinue application and leave the premises; keeping head low and running in a serpentine fashion). * What do you want to be IF you grow up? :::::__ *Have you ever been fingerprinted? ::_ Had a DNA sample taken and recorded? ::_ * Your dentist is :::: Emergency Phone Number :::

:::::::: Signature (This means your name)
(Note: After submitting your application, please allow 4-6 years for processing).


4th of July I was at a family get together and a neighbor kid came in to see my nephew that had graduated from high school..He said he was heading for S.Carolina the end of July,and naturally my ears perked up.I said, "Where are you going in S.Carolina?" And here came the answer, "Parris Island, ever heard of it?"..Well,I rolled up my left sleeve and said "Sure have"...I gave him one piece of advice,"Keep your eyes & ears open and your mouth shut." That's what my dad said to me when I went in in 1969. Jeff Wenum,Cpl. ..........
Sgt Grit, Excuse me, but when did it become customary to abandon any of life's accomplishments? Do you one day become a Former High School or College Graduate? When Doctors (of any PhD!) retire, you damn well better to remember to call them Doctor, because they'll sure remind you in a hurry. So, Knock off the "Former" crap unless you have less than a General Discharge. You are a Marine. You are stuck with it. Get over it. Marine! Scott McClellan MSgt USMC Ret. ..........
The USMC Vietnam Tankers Assn is for ANYONE who was assigned to or supported any of the three Marine tank battalions in Vietnam. We have tankers, $hitfisters, comm guys ("ditty-dots"), motor-T dudes, supply pogues, ammo tec's, our most excellent "Doc's" and even all those Ontos dudes in AT's. Doubletree Hotel Airport, Seattle, Washington, Rooms: $89, Single/Double August 21 - 23, 2003, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Early Arrival: 20 August (Wed.) Depart: 24 August (Sun.) For more Information E-mail:, or call Dick Carey at (508) 760-5441 ..........
I had to share this funny comment from a Cpl. with the 11th MEU currently deployed on a ship... I thought Ed was going to die laughing at this!! What a great sense of humor this kid has!
"...right now we are out at sea in the middle of nowhere, and for all I know the Navy has gotten us lost!"
He made me laugh out loud! draiocht .........

During my research for a paper at the University of Arizona (where Navajo is taught in the 'Modern Languages' department), I chanced across which contains a fairly comprehensive Code Talker's dictionary. It also has a version of The Hymn that I'm certain not many Marines are familiar with. Duke, Sgt. of Marines 1966-70

God Bless America!!
Semper fi!!
Sgt Grit

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