Hi Sgt Grit
Under the heading "Something Old" in this newsletter, the fellows were mentioning what they had that was old. I still have my camouflage (reversible) dungarees from Tarawa-Saipan-Tinian (1943 & '44,) and my helmet cover! Surprisingly, I can still fasten them (the waist of trousers has shrunk a bit from hanging in a dark closet for so many years - but the jacket fits just fine.)
Wendell Perkins, 490880
A-1-6, 2ndMarDiv ('43-'44)
Pass this newsletter on to anyone you feel would like it.
To submit your thoughts use firstname.lastname@example.org
To SUBSCRIBE to the list click here:
Insert your email address in the SUBSCRIBE box
To UNSUBSCRIBE from the list click here:
Scroll down and insert your email address in the UNSUBSCRIBE box
...OR... email me at email@example.com
some of you do not get a newsletter weekly.
Do this; put this email address in your address book.
Some filters look for an approved address.
More good old blatant western culture American capitalism.
Magazine...........A reminder that I have a monthly paper magazine similar to this online newsletter. It is stories like these but mostly from Marines without computers. In the magazine format I can add pictures and other things that email does not lend it self. It is only $15 yr order today.
or send mailing address to firstname.lastname@example.org requesting a free sample copy.
Crystal Name Plate -Customized Crystal Paper Weight First Sergeant of The Marines Master Sergeant of The Marines Master Gunnery Sergeant of The Marines Sergeant Major of The Marines
GAMES OVER A FOOTLOCKER
George Maling "hit the nail" on the head when he talked about the old squad bays vs. rooms. We were a lot closer with the guys we were with. Samey, same with the old tents. In the latter, you shared the "chores" with each other, i.e. getting up to light the d*mn oil stove; get a new supply of oil; fetch water, etc. You worked together, played together and shared experiences. Back stateside, you were close to the guys in your squad bay. Remember the field days, airing out fart sacks and buffing the floor? How about those blackjack games over a footlocker and blanket? In close proximity with other Marines, you got to know them better. BTW. I preferred the top rack.
Bob Rader #1405534
NEATLY FOLDED MY NAPKIN
Upon my return home after my first trip to RVN, I was greeted by numerous family members at the Atlanta Airport. This was on an Early Sunday Morning, so after the greetings, I was told that Sunday Dinner would include my favorite meal of fried chicken, gravy, homemade biscuits, etc... What I wasn't prepared for was all the friends at our family church showed up to eat with the family to include the Minister of our church. Well needless to say, everyone watched me closely and asked me a "million " questions about everything but mainly to see if I was as crude and wild as they had heard Marines get in country. My manners were impeccable and at the end of the meal I neatly folded my napkin laid it beside my plate. I looked around and saw that everyone was watching me very intently. As I pushed myself away from the table, I looked around the room being so proud of my manners, I blurted out "I bet you people thought I was going to f#$k that up"!!! It wasn't funny then (my Mother was extremely hostile to put it mildly), but as I think back on that particular memory, I can't help but smile at how "grunt" I was. After my return from my other two trips to RVN, my family was smart enough not to invite half the church or the minister until I had a few days to get "civilized" again.
GOD BLESS AMERICA AND ALL WHO SERVE HER PROUDLY!
M. P. Herrin
MSgt. USMC (RET)
TOP OR NOT TO TOP
In response to one of the letters regarding calling a Master Sergeant "Top" and not having a nickname for a Master Gunnery Sergeant, I thought I would inform you that after I got home from Vietnam, I joined the reserves and stayed there until my recent retirement. I worked my way up from Gunny, the rank I was when I left Nam, to Top and then to Master Gunnery Sergeant. The guys in my unit knew they couldn't call me Top anymore and felt there should be a nickname for the MGYSGT rank. So they decided to start calling me Big Top right around the time when our unit got called up for Desert Storm and it has stuck since then.
Semper Fi to all,
R J Bael, MGySgt, retired
I went through Parris Island in 1966 and was taught, contrary to the Marine that spoke up last week, that ALL E-8 and E-9's were due the respect of being addressed as "Top". I understood it was first done as the senior enlisted man in any unit. However, since they could have been a 1st Sgt. or a Sgt. Major the honor was due both. Likewise a Master Sgt. or Master Gy. Sgt. Right or wrong, it's what we were taught, and I used that term for my entire 4 year enlistment and was never rebuked for it. I still use it today when dealing with those ranks, in uniform, even though they are by now several years my junior. Old habits die hard, and besides, they still appreciate it!
Not as lean, but still a Marine
THE LADY ONLY RENTED TO
Dear Sgt Grit
When we were in NAS Jacksonville we would go to St Augustine and spend the weekend on liberty in 1957. We usually got a room at the same house. The lady only rented to servicemen. She was elderly and was a widow of an admiral. She told that the day the women were being accepted into the Marines or I guess their birthday during the ceremony a picture fell off the wall. She probably said who the picture was but I have forgotten. Has anyone else ever heard this story?
Dale Hartley 1607484 1956-1962 USMCR
BECAUSE THE WET COT
Entered the Corps July '42. Had two experiences that stand out in Boot Camp.
The tent held 8 recruits as I recall....Unfortunately for me and the other guys in my tent we had a lowlife who regretted his decision to join up. He desperately wanted out and tried everything possible to no avail until he hit on the idea of wetting his bed. So every morning we complained to the D.I. who was not sympathetic at all. After weeks of hearing us complain because the wet cot and blankets were very offensive...the D.I. came up with what he thought was the solution. He ordered us to do 2 hour stints throughout the night....waking this sh!tbird at least once every 2 hours and forcibly escorting him to the head. Well we all did our 2 hours but he still managed to wet his bed and finally achieved his objective.....he got his discharge....Don't know what kind....probably a C.O.G. What a relief. The second thing that occurred was one of the men in our platoon came down with spinal meningitis and the entire platoon was quarantined for a period of time. We continued our training but separate from all others on the base. The platoon was #730 San Diego. In January '43 I went over on the Lurline, this great luxury liner and I was quartered on the top deck in what had been the gentlemen's card room. Very fancy with all the gilt mirrors etc. We ate in the main dining room off linen with silver and crystal, the waiters were all civilians. the only problem with all this is that with 5,000 Marines on board....As soon as we finished one meal we ran and got in the long line for the next meal.
One last experience aboard ship....Being green I got in the shower and shampooed my hair with the soap provided....What I did not know was the showers used salt water so I came out with my hair in spikes and the only way out was to go to the barber shop on board and pay them to give me a shampoo using regular water. I think they charged me 50 cents which was a lot of money in those days.
Finally....A call came out that there was a need for volunteers to replace the KIA and WIA Marines Raiders from the Guadalcanal operation. I and a very few others stepped forward and thus joined Edson's Raiders. Later we were formed into the new 4th Marines. The senior D.I. was named Dalrympal.
Al Careaga, former Gy/Sgt.
I HAD A MONTH TO GO
I had a month to go before my release and didn't think I would have to stand the inspection. I was wrong. My plt Sgt informed me 4 hrs prior that I would stand the personnel and wall locker insp. I was so distressed I went back to my room, stripped off my utilities and began to prepare. My wall locker was ready but I found that I only had the minimum requirements for boxer shorts, leaving me none to put on for the inspection. My briefs and other excess clothing I had already moved out to my car and time was running short. I figured no big deal, I just won't wear any, nobody will ever know. The inspection began, things was lookin good. A Col.,Major, Sgt Major from HQ along with my PLt Sgt seemed pretty impressed. The Col.started thumbing through my locker turned to me a asked ... does all your uniforms fit you properly Sgt? I replied yes sir! He then pulled a pair of dress green pants out of my locker, handed them to me and said "try these on"
S. McCoy USMC '73 - '77
Got married in 1970 in my dress blues, and still have and use the black service shoes. Haven't polished them for 10-15 yrs.; just run the toes up&down the back of pants leg to shine them up. Course, they don't look QUITE as good as BACK THEN; but if I go where I know a Marine will be I'll probably have to put some more 'spit' on them.
Jeff Wenum 69-75
I THINK NOT!
Hey Sarge (with all due respect):
As one who DID "walk the sands of Iwo Jima", I must differ with Sgt. OA Martinez (current?) in a recent issue of your newsletter and agree with Sgt. Geo. Maling (Korea) in the same issue. "Sarge", "Gunny" and "Top", disrespectful? I think not! They were titles earned by men who warranted the complete respect of those under them, rather than mere tolerance and obedience owed to their rank!
In another letter, the rank of Marine Gunner was mentioned
- this was a senior enlisted man who warranted further promotion but was not yet considered to be qualified to be a commissioned officer. His rank insignia was a bronze bursting bomb regardless of his duties - infantry, artillery, communications, etc. and he was called "Gunner". After all, aren't commissioned officers called Lieutenant - - -, or Captain - - -, or Major - - -, etc.? What else would you call him? Later, there were Chief Marine Gunners who wore the same rank insignia but were one pay grade higher. This was before the days of Warrant Officers 1 thru 4 or is it 5 now? As an aside, if commissioned, a Marine Gunner usually became a 1st Lieutenant, and a Chief Marine Gunner, a Captain. Just a little nostalgia for the few old timers remaining out there.
- Dave Engler USMC 1942 - 1946
THIS WEAPON IS FILTHY
Dear Sgt Grit
Back in 1953 thru 1955 I was stationed at South Camp Fuji at Fujioka Japan in Weapons Company, 1st Bn, 3rd Marines, 3rd Mar. Div. We had a bunch of characters that would do anything for a laugh. They should have made a movie about these guys One morning the 3 section leaders decided to fall out for rifle inspection with only one rifle. The Lt. started down the first rank inspected the rifle without comment after he had gone a ways down the rank the section leader handed the rifle to the section leader behind him. Along comes the Lt. and inspects the second rank. He said " There is dirt in the bore, make sure you clean the weapon better next time". The section leader behind him got the weapon next. Along comes the Lt. and inspects the weapon for the 3rd time this time he was furious " He said " Marine this weapon is filthy, I'm amazed that you would fall out for inspection with a weapon this dirty, get it cleaned up and report back to me at 16:30".
So at 16:30 he takes his own weapon and gets it inspected and of course it passed. That evening at the Black Cat bar the troops bought the beer for the section leaders.
S/Sgt Norm Barnes (1953-1957)
Months ago you passed on to your troops my meeting of the "Old Salt" from WW 2. Then the letter about the brain cancer that attacked the old noggin. Thanks again. Not long after all these tests this young doctor shows up with my plan for treatment of the tumor. Same old s---!!! surgery, drugs, radiation and a whole lot of good luck. This is when "The Spirit of our Corps" took over. I knew it was going to be one h*ll of a fight but to quit wasn't going to get it. The first thoughts were "IMPROVISE, ADAPT AND OVERCOME". He said " what"? I tried to explain but he just didn't get it. He left the room with a stupid look on his young face. The nurse said, "Can I use that with my other patients"? I told her to "pass the word". She wrote it down and said thanks. Well I just happen to have one of your bumper stickers at home with our beloved "Eagle, Globe, and Anchor" on it and those exact words. The next visit I handed it to her and told her to put it up for all to see. It's been there for all to read as they enter the treatment room. Once again "Sgt.Grit." has landed.
God Bless America and Her Warriors!
Just to follow up on the January 22, 2004 item regarding Kilo 4/13. I arrived in Nam at the beginning of April 1969 and was assigned to Kilo 4/11 as a field wireman (2511). At that time the battery was on Hill 52 (with a headquarters contingent on Hill 65) for Oklahoma Hills. In September 1969, we changed places with Mike 4/11 and went back to N.A.C. (Northern Artillery Cantonment). At this time, Kilo 4/13 was at LZ Ross. In late January 1970, I went on R&R. When I got back, I found myself transferred to Kilo 4/13. While I was gone, Kilo 4/11 and Kilo 4/13 swapped positions. I stayed with Kilo 4/13 until the beginning of March when a bunch of us short-timers were transferred to HQ/1/13 to prepare for the 26th RLT's return to the world. Two plane loads of us comprised the "advance group" and left on March 19, 1970, flying straight through (with a 2 hour layover in Okinawa) to El Toro.
Proud Father of L/Cpl Eric Thoroe USMC (2002-????)
BLEED INTO THE BUCKET
I was a Drill Instructor from 1961-63 at PI. I took thru 5 platoons as a junior DI and three as a senior DI. I have heard stories you wouldn't believe. From my Daddy needs me back on the farm because it is harvest time, to I will kill myself. One day a recruit knocked on my hatch and requested to speak to the Drill Instructor. I told him to center and when I looked up he had a M1 bayonet and was sawing on his left wrist. He said nothing; but, kept sawing. I told him that he was such a stupid civilian and that he couldn't do anything right. I force him to the position of attention and put my mouth close to his ear. I told him I will teach him how to die. I made him go back into the squad bay and get his bucket, two blankets and 6 Marine Corps Guide books and return in 30 seconds. I made several of the other recruits give him their guide book. I explained to him that I wanted him to put the guide books in the bottom of the bucket and wrap the blankets around the bayonet so that the blade stuck up above the top of the bucket. Now I explained that all he had to do was get on his knees and put his hands behind him and fall forward rapidly so the bayonet will enter his chest about where his heart was. This will take care of two things. he will die from the bayonet wound and he will bleed into the bucket so his fellow recruits will not have to clean up after he bleeds to death. He looked at me like I was some crazy, out of control maniac. The recruit took the bucket, blankets and guide books back into the squad bay. I was holding my breath; but, maintaining my composure. He put the bucket behind his bunk, put the blankets on his bunk and handed guide books back to their owners. He got his rifle down from his bunk and started to clean it with the rest of the platoon. Needless to say I kept a close eye on him the rest of the way through boot camp. Believe it or not, he graduated and was promoted to PFC.
Major USMC (ret)
WHAT DOES YOUR WIFE SAY
The P.I . memories are great...In 1954 as a member of Plt 306, 5th Bn., one comes to mind involving a Pvt Jones who kept wetting his bed ..the D.I. after trying the usual cures., i.e. having the Pvt wear his wet sheet in formation..finally said to him at morning formation..."Jones, I checked your record and it shows that you are married. What does your wife say when you wet the bed? Without hesitation, Jones replied, "Sir, she wets the bed too!!!!!"
DUCK WALK US THROUGH THE ENTIRE CAMP
The letter from S/SGT Barnes stimulated a few memories from Tent Camp Matthew's in early 1954: In formation, just prior to marching to the range, DI Cpl. Cook advised he was having "nerve pills" distributed which would calm our nerves and enable us to fire at our best (this probably was our first introduction to the miracle drug APC). Further, that if we won the shooting competition that day, upon returning to camp, the smoking lamp would be lit and he would pass out cigars for the occasion. Our Platoon #137 won the day over Platoons #135 and #136. Marching back into camp we had never dug in our heels in a more emphatic and coordinated cadence up to that point. The pride was a rare experience I shall never forget. In formation, in front of the tents, we anticipated the celebratory cigars. Instead, Cpl. Cook ordered "down on your haunches" and proceeded to duck walk us through the entire camp. The platoons we had just defeated at the rifle range looked on in utter disbelief.
A few days later we were ordered to fall out "for a special treat." Cpl. Cook was standing beside a large cardboard carton. He ordered "Private Smith, front and center." Then announced to the rest of us, "Private Smith seems to be a special individual." "Open this box!" The box was full of cookies from Smith's mother and meant for the entire platoon. "Since yours is the only name on this box you better get started eating them." We stood at parade rest while Smith ate cookies until he was choking and finally vomited. At this point we were dismissed...except for Smith...who was ordered to "keep eating." At the very first opportunity we were sending letters to our families: "PLEASE DON'T SEND US COOKIES OR ANYTHING ELSE!"
Just one more comment on Camp Matthew's; there was no hot water in the showers nor anywhere else in that camp. Twentynine Palms was a picnic compared to the Camp Matthew's experience. Incidentally, we went on to win Honor Platoon and departed to our various assigned duty stations with more pride and confidence than we had ever known. Thank you Corporal W. E. Cook!
Craig Murchland, Cpl. 1954-1957
I ENDED UP DECLINING 8th & I
Sgt. Grit I just finished reading the latest newsletter and as always I've really enjoyed it, especially the boot camp stories. So here's one of my own to share with my brother and sister Marines. I was at MCRD PI from Sept 24th until Dec 21, 1972, 3rd Battalion, Platoon 3005, I Company.My Senior DI was SSgt. J.A. Marberry and my 2 Assistant Drill Instructors were Sgt. L.B. Jones and Sgt. B.E. Laursen. They were our DI's the entire 3 months of boot and they are 3 men that I will forever hold the utmost respect and admiration for. The rumor during boot was that we were their first platoon since they got back from Vietnam and then completed Drill Instructor School. During boot camp our platoon had fallen a few points short in winning the company awards for the rifle range and Final PFT and all we had left to go for was the Final Drill Competition. They were bound and determined that we were going to win this award or die trying. Well finally came the day that the company fell out in front of 3rd Battalion headquarters on the grinder for the Final Drill Competition. By this time, late in 3rd Phase and only a few days from graduation we were squared away, confident, full of p!ss and vinegar and just knew we were not going to let our DI's down, we were going to win this for them. Each platoon of the company was in formation along the edge of the grinder and when our time came we were marched in front of the headquarters building where we were halted. The first part of the competition was doing basic movements such as port arms, present arms, left face, right face, about face. I so wanted to do as well as possible because these 3 men who a few months earlier I had thought to be my worse nightmare had come to mean the world the to me. I was pretty squared away as far as drill was concerned. I had been one of 8 from my company that had been selected to go to 8th & I after boot camp to join the Silent Drill Team, an offer that I ended up declining due to Sgt. Laursen asking me did I really want to go there or to Nam and kill gooks? Vietnam was still going on at the time and I wanted to go. Plus Sgt. Laursen was a Recon Marine and I had thoughts of following in his footsteps as a combat Recon Marine. So needless to say I never made it to 8th & I. Sgt. Laursen was also the DI that was drilling us that day during the Final Drill comp. He gave the command for Left Face and I don't know what happened, my brain housing group froze up or something because I did a Right Face. But being I had had it drilled into me for quick thinking I just kept going around, a complete 360 degree, so that by the time I finished I was facing in the same direction as the rest of the platoon. I knew I was dead meat though, I had screwed up BIG TIME. We finished the rest of our movement and marching and marched off the grinder to wait while the other platoons did theirs. As soon as we were halted Sgt. Laursen was in my face, not being able to yell quite as loud as normal because of all the judges of the Drill Comp in the vicinity. "Spencer", he said "what the f**k is your problem? Did someone pay you to f**k up my Drill Comp ?" All I knew to say was " Sir , no sir, private was just trying too hard sir". He says " Trying to do what? F**k up my Drill Comp?" "Sir no sir". Since we had to wait for the other platoons to finish he just said "I'll deal with you later". I knew I was dead. I could see my mom and dad getting a letter saying there had been a tragic accident in the swamps or something like that. But Lo and Behold I must have been living right or something because our platoon won Final Drill Comp that day. I don't know if the judges never saw my screw-up because of my quick thinking or just that the other platoons screwed up worse. But Sgt. Laursen was so happy he forgot all about me, I never heard another word about it. Whew!!!! I read in Leatherneck about a year later that Sgt. Laursen was now a GySgt and was the NCOIC of Drill Instructor School. Made me proud to be able to say he was one of my boot camp Drill Instructors.
So SSgt. Marberry, Sgt. Jones and Sgt. Laursen, if your out there somewhere and reading this, know that the lessons you taught me, the self-respect and self-discipline, the pride in the Corps, has never left me and never will.
D*MN GOOD IDEA
Dear Sgt Grit
Back in 1956 I was in the Sgt quarters when the GySgt came in and announced would anyone be interested in going TAD (temporary assigned duty) to the brig at Main side ( Camp Pendleton). He said if your interested go see the First Sgt. Then he looks at me and says" How about you"? " I said no way". Well two days later he comes back and says " Pack your gear your going to the brig". The next day I report to the brig and placed in charge of guard section. Before I got there I imagined all kinds of hardened criminals but soon discovered the prisoners weren't much different than me and the majority of the offenses were minor. In fact several prisoners became my friends (unofficially of course). To sight an example one night a scrub brush came flying out of the dark and hit my roving patrol the next day 5 different prisoners came to me and told me who did it. I called the guy into the office and told him " If were you I would watch my step, or you just might get a blanket party". I said this because the guys in the tent didn't like him and they wanted me to say the word. He got the message.
One day I was on duty and the prisoners were going to chow I asked this big guy to bring me back a sandwich, I told him to tell the guards it was for me. He smiled and said "No problem". About 30 minutes later he comes back and hands me a sandwich. I never did figure out how he got it passed the guards. On Sunday the prisoners had the afternoon off to read or what ever. There was this ex-biker from Los Angles who use to come into the duty hut and tell me exciting stories about his adventures. This guy should have wrote a book. There was this feisty little guy named Willy and this big giant of a guy who kept bugging Willy. Willy told him " Knock it off are your going to get hurt". Sure enough when I came on duty the next day the giant was wearing a huge bandage on his head Willy true to his word had hit him in the head with a big rock. There was a MSgt Cole there that was the assistant brig warden. This was the only enlisted man I ever called Sir because when he came around and asked you a question You had better have the right answer. One day I was on duty and noticed we had flower boxes around the guard shack and the base nursery was right next door so I sent some guys over to get some flowers. I thought they looked pretty nice. Then here comes MSgt Cole he sees the flowers and comes into the office he said "Are you responsible for this"? I said " Yes sir ". He smiled and said " D*mn good idea". I learned later that most of the guys were sent back to their units and finished their enlistments.
S/Sgt Norm Barnes (1953-1957)
ONTOS OR NOT TO ONTOS
The Colonel in his letter below is mistaken. The Marine Antitank Battalion as an individual Marine unit may have been phased out when it was permanently attached to the Marine Tank Battalions as an organic part of the Tank Bn back in the middle 1960's but the M-50 Ontos vehicle stayed in the Marine Corps arsenal for a few years past 1967. I was In-country from Jan 1968 to Feb 1969 and there were Ontos (...or jokingly I call of the plural: "Onti"...) operating with Charlie Co, 3rd Tank Bn all over Leatherneck Square. I have some good buddies who served inside those "pigs" (as Ontos crewmen called their vehicles) during the siege of Khe Sanh as well in Hue City during Tet of 1968. Sorry Colonel, I guess that even officers can make mistakes.
Sgt 3rd Tanks, RVN 1968 - 1969
OATH, OATH AND MORE OATH
Hello Sgt. Grit,
Great newsletter! Have read all the boot camp stories in the past two issues and thought that I would share mine. Before I left Houston for MCRD, I was given the oath three times. The first was after I originally enlisted for three years. Then during the holding period (to get the rest of the recruits collected) the Recruiting Sgt. told me that I could be guaranteed electronics training if I signed up for a four year tour (bless him!). After completing the paper work for four years, I was given the second oath.
This was in February of 1958 during the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo. That year the guest star was none other than Hugh O'Brian, of television, who played Wyatt Earp. As everyone knows, the Marine Corps is not bashful about publicity. Since he was the youngest DI that the Corps ever had (that is what I was told) the Marines were shipping about 30 recruits from Houston, San Antonio, and El Paso to form the Wyatt Earp Platoon 322 at MCRD. When all the recruits reported in, we were taken to the San Jacinto Battle Grounds where the Battleship Texas is moored, lined up on deck in some order (remember we had not gone to boot camp yet) and Hugh O'Brian gave us the oath again, which was the third time for me. That ceremony was on the TV news that night.
The most vivid memory that I have, upon arrival at the San Diego airport, is the sight of a gorilla in a Marine Corps uniform! That was the meanest, toughest and most squared away gunny that I have ever seen.
My overall memories of boot camp can be described in three words. WHAT A BLAST!!
Bill Cates Cpl E-4 1699531
Radio Technician 2771
Hq Btry 11th Mar. Regt
1958 - 1962
Last month many of you listed your old items from your days in the Corps. My father, PFC Rosson, who lives near Sacramento CA. has you beat. He was in Platoon 788, MCRDSD in 1944. He has kept his Boot Camp Platoon photo(About half of his Platoon were Navaho's). His ID card and dog tags. His three letters of reference from school teachers, mustering out payment chit, orders transferring him to inactive duty and his terminal leave and discharge orders. He has the 169th Birthday menu from the chow hall at MCRD dated 11-10-44. All of the letters that he wrote to my Grandmother from Okinawa and China. The DoN card telling his mother that he is being transferred overseas and how she can write him. He has his "Certificate of private ownership of souvenirs", and he still has the souvenirs that include two Japanese flags. This is all in a photo album with photos of his Platoon and buddies from B Co. in Okinawa and China. He was assigned to Baker Company, 1st Battalion, 29th Marines, 6th Marine Division. His is still very proud to be a Marine and can usually be seen sporting his 6th Marine Division ball. (Sgt. Grits) His kids followed in his footsteps. Both of his son's are or were Marines and his daughter was a Navy Corpsman. His Grandson also served four years as a Marine.
Is there anyone else out there from B,1,29?
GySgt Rosson (AD)
ONE THING YOU DON'T KNOW
Can any of you old salts remember this? I was stationed at Camp LeJeune and we were having our IG inspection and a captain was inspecting my trash and asking me questions about different Marines, he asked me several questions about Chesty Puller which I had answered correctly then he told me, " there's one thing you don't know about Chesty Puller" I said: "What's that sir?" He had a Eagle, Globe & Anchor tattooed across his chest! ,said the captain. I never forgot that! But, I've always wondered if it were true, so if any of you old salts can tell me: Did Chesty Puller have the EGA tattooed across his chest?
Harry N. 1988 - 1992
AS LONG AS IT IS SMALL
Dear Sgt Grit:
Reading all those stories on boot camp revived some memories. I was in Plt, 96 MCRD San Diego, Oct/Dec 1948, just turned 17, native Californian. One of the rules related to how to tie a field scarf, "Small knot, no Hollywood knots" referring to the Windsor knot that I still tie. I went to the Sr DI and showed him how I tied a very small Windsor knot, also known at the time as a Hollywood knot, and he agreed as long as it was "SMALL" it would be OK. One of my platoon buds, Armijo, said, "Man, you can't tie that kind of knot." I assured him that the Sr DI had passed on it as long as it was small. Which means you've got to do it right, tug it down but keep the bottom of the field scarf at or above the belt line. Several days later at noon chow I heard my name yelled from the back of the mess hall and immediately rose to attention. Our JR DI, Cpl Hanson, came walking across the tables, literally, dragging poor Armijo by the field scarf. "Walker, did you tie this man's field scarf below his asshole?" "Sir, no sir, it was above his belt last I saw it." "You and Armijo meet me outside the squad bay at taps, and bring your bucket and borrow a bucket."At taps we showed up as ordered. At that time the grinder was bordered by some 50+ palm trees. We were informed that it would be necessary to see that each of us put two buckets of water on each tree, and if we finished by reveille we could spit shine the entire platoon's boondockers. He then assigned another two "sh!tbirds" to keep count of our chores. Needless to say, we were still at it at reveille. After morning chow it was on to classes and God help you if you dozed off or failed the class. Many an early morning, about 2 am, the lights would snap on and we'd all be dragged out of the rack and told about some foul-up one of our platoon members did. Then came the buckets of water and buckets of sand, spread all over the deck. That had to be cleaned and ready for inspection by reveille. The poor guy whom the DI identified as the culprit was threatened with worse than death. Just before graduation we were issued a set of Blues. They were all hung in a common space just outside the squad bay. One guy ended up losing his set of gold collar emblems and was caught stealing a set from another man's Blues. The Jr DI had him stand butt naked and lean against the wall, then applied an entire can of shoe polish to his naked butt, then the entire platoon proceeded to shine their boondocks on his backside. I later learned he was not graduated with us and was sent back to a beginning platoon.
After boot camp I went to KBay, thence to Pearl. Our C.O. was then Col. Puller. When Korea broke out Puller went to Pendleton to form the 1st Marines and a bunch of us volunteered and we were flown from Pearl to Tachikawa and then to Masan and joined the 1st Prov. Mar Brigade in mid August 1950, made Inchon, 3rd wave, Seoul, Wonsan, Chosin, and there I got beat up by a Chinese concussion grenade, busted my arm and my gut, froze my feet and took a round thru the legs. Evac'd out Dec 6 to the USS Consolation, then to Yokusuka Naval Hosp. then Tripler in Oahu. then Oak Knoll and finally to Santa Margarita Naval Hospital aboard Pendleton. Back to duty in May of '51 at Long Beach Navy Yard, discharged from there in Oct. 1952. Then to the Glendale P.D., finally met an Arkansas gal, married moved South and now in the Nashville, TN area. To the extent able, go to MCL meetings and still proud of the Corps. Today's Corps is outstanding. Better trained & equipped, but we ate well and I will say that our officer corps in Korea was the finest in the history of the Marine Corps and I doubt could ever be exceeded. I could write a small book on the leadership qualities of the officers we served under in 1950 and I am confident that I am here to talk about it because of them.
And I think we enlisted can be proud of our record there. The Corps changed my life forever
Ray L. Walker
FOLSOM PRISON BLUES
Recently after a vet meeting, we started telling sea stories. Most of us were Nam vets and were familiar with the activities of the sea stories been told. Somehow or other we were remembering the passing of the great singer, Johnny Cash and some of his songs. I remember on one occasion in early 1968 around Feb. or March, our platoon was assigned to resupply convoy duty protection from DaNang to Hue/Phu Bai. On one of those resupply trips, our convoy was stalled somewhere outside Phu Bai. All of a sudden someone from the vil pop a hand grenade at our truck. I do not recall who the Marine was that kicked it off to the other side and onto the ground where it detonated. No injuries from the grenade but plenty Marines p!ssed off. There were three men amongst the crowd in the vil that started running. Other villagers were pointing at them indicating that they had thrown the grenade. Our M-14's 7.62 mm bullets found there way into these VC's bodies. ( I was with A 1/27 and we still had the M 14s, we had not been issued the M 16s yet.) On the way back to Danang we started singing to Johnny Cash's "Folsom Prison Blues"--"If you see a convoy coming up around the curve, you better not mess with us because, We killed three gooks in Phu Bai, just to watch them Die. Yeah, we killed three gooks in Phu Bai, just to watch them die".
One of the ex-soldiers there told me never happened G.I., that it could not be possible because that song by Johnny Cash had not come out yet in '68. This other Marine and I remarked that maybe we should get some type royalties if Cash copied from A 1/27; and use it for a reunion. But, alas, "Folsom Prison Blues" had already been one of Johnny Cash's great hits. All we did was change the wording to boost our morale.
Any other Marine from 1st platoon Alpha 1st Battalion 27th Marines out there remember this episode? Or for that matter any Marine that was in Nam, remember ever hearing that tune with those words? And yeah, we killed three gooks in Phu Bai, just to watch them die." That Marine that kicked off the grenade should have been awarded a medal. After all, he saved all of those of us in that truck, plus the supplies we were carrying. And no telling, with our truck stuck there, it could have caused a chain reaction where others in the convoy behind us could have been ambushed also.
IN RESPONSE TO SGT. MATT KIRK'S INQUIRY OF WHAT RECRUITS WOULD DO TO GET OUT OF BOOT CAMP, I SUBMIT THE FOLLOWING. ITS MID SEPTEMBER 1967 AND I HAVE JUST PLANTED MY FEET ON THE FOOTPRINTS IN PARRIS ISLAND. THE DI TEAM PICKS US UP AND WE MARCH OVER TO THIRD BATTALION (DISNEYLAND AT THE TIME BECAUSE WE HAD BRICK THREE STORY BARRACKS) WITH OUR INITIAL ISSUE OF UNIFORMS, SEABAG, ETC. ONCE IN THE BARRACKS, WHILE STILL IN CIVVIES, THE DI ASKS WHO HAS HAD ANY COLLEGE AND I RELUCTANTLY RAISE MY HAND SINCE I HAD JUST COME OUT OF A TWO YEAR COMMUNITY COLLEGE. AFTER DESIGNATING ME PLATOON 3046'S "SCRIBE." ONE OF THE ASSISTANT DI's DRAGS ME INTO THE OFFICE AND EXPLAINS MY DUTIES, BUT FIRST I HAD TO REVIEW A FORMAL REPORT THAT THE DI HAS TO SUBMIT THAT DAY. I AM TO CHECK SPELLING, GRAMMAR, STRUCTURE AND IN GENERAL MAKE SURE IT IS PERFECT. I READ THE REPORT WHICH DETAILS THE ATTEMPTED SUICIDE OF A RECRUIT WHO ATTEMPTED TO KILL HIMSELF BY JUMPING OUT OF A THIRD STORY WINDOW. THE REPORT WENT ON TO EXPLAIN THAT THE REASON THE RECRUIT ONLY SUSTAINED THE NUMEROUS BROKEN BONES BUT FAILED SUCCEED IN HIS DEATH ATTEMPT WAS THAT HE LANDED IN SOME BUSHES WHICH HELPED BREAK HIS FALL. NEEDLESS TO SAY I SAT THERE STUNNED, WONDERING "WHAT THE HE** HAVE I GOTTEN MYSELF INTO." I THINK THAT FALLS INTO THE MORE EXTREME CATEGORY OF WANTING TO GET OUT OF BOOT CAMP.
C. J. "SKIP" SEYER
2/9 3RD MAR DIV - VIETNAM 69-69
ONLY TOOK A MINUTE
I read the story of recruits that try to get kicked out of the Corps. So I just wanted to add my 2 cents. We were at the rifle range and this one guy who was always getting in trouble got a letter from his sister. Inside this letter was 1 "Joint". Our little recruit walked into the shower, striped down (naked) and fired it up right there. It only took a minute or 2 before the DI was running around going crazy, calling the MP's and quietly getting him out never to be seen or heard from again.
H&S Battalion, MP Co., 1984
THE GUNNER SCOWLED
This is a story about Warrant Officers and their titles. There were, at one time, only four MOS's that rated the title "Gunner" and wore a bursting bomb on one collar, but the title became, over time, synonymous with anyone who wore the bars of a warrant officer. W-1's were "warranted" by the Secretary of the service in which they served. In the case of the Marines, that was the SECNAV. CW-2, CW-3 and CW-4 were commissioned by the President and for the longest time, were call Commissioned Warrant Officers,,, not Chief Warrant Officers. I was stationed at the Marine Aviation Detachment in Memphis in the early 60's and Memphis was a town that still had great respect for the military. The citizens would have these gala affairs and always extend an invitation to the Marines. Many of us, while we appreciated the honor, found these gatherings kind of boring, as we generally didn't know anyone but the Marines and we saw them all the time anyway. Well, the Colonel always had to go, along with the exec., then the half of the majors, a third of the Captains, several lieutenants and last, but not least, some of the Warrant Officers. As a young warrant officer (W-1), I was selected to attend the "Crown & Scepter Ball" along with a very senior and, at the time, somewhat grumpy CWO-4. We all had the greatest respect for this gentleman since he wore so many personal decorations and campaign medals that they seemed to cover the left side of his dress blouse. He even had a 2nd Nicaraguan Campaign medal, one that most of us had never seen before. He would regale us with great stories about the Marines in Nicaragua and his time in places we'd read about but never seen. He also did not suffer Fools gladly! Well, we were standing there, in a small knot of junior officers, when a lady came up to us, walked over to the "Gunner" and remarked on the number of medals he had on his uniform and asked if they were all his.. The Gunner scowled and said, yes, they were all his. She then looked at the epaulet on his dress blues, saw the "Lipstick Lt.", bar and, in the middle, a gold bursting bomb. With a puzzled look on her face and in a soft southern drawl, she said exactly the wrong thing. She said, " You'll have to forgive me, I'm Navy oriented and I just don't recognize your rank. Could you tell me what you are?" The Gunner responded, "I'm a Commissioned Warrant Officer in the United States Marine Corps!" She followed up by saying, "I don't understand what that is. Could you explain it to me?" The Gunner, now heating up a little, looked her right in the eye and said, "Lady! A Commissioned Warrant Officer is a 2nd Lieutenant without a college education doing the work of a Captain and drawing the pay of a Sergeant!!" As he smiled at all of us, she walked away, still "Navy Oriented", I'm sure! I've never forgotten his apt description and have used it more than once myself.
Jim Lake, Maj. USMC (ret), 1954-1979
Former Sgt(E-5), former CWO-4
Now a metal Marine
BUNKERS, BUNKERS AND MORE BUNKERS
Having served with the 1/26 Marines at Khe Sanh I believe that during TET 68 there where Ontos at our base. In addition in Aug.68 we were guarding a bridge on Rt. 1 below Phu Bai, on one of my last nights with my unit the NVA attacked, we were very fortunate to have an Ontos dug in with us and it was a big help in repelling the attack. Prior to January 21,1968 there was a mess hall at Khe Sanh and while inside the perimeter we did have a certain feeling of being secure. Just before the above mentioned date things did change when we found out that we were to become the target of an enemy plan to hit us then overrun the base. I do not remember ever leaving the confines of the Base and not being totally prepared to meet the enemy at any time , before,during, or after the Seige. Bunkers- there were bunkers all over the Base prior to Jan.21. they were continuous around the perimeter, after the initial hit the morning of 1/21/68 we built more bunkers, deepened the trench lines added additional fighting parapits, added secondary trench lines, I can remember going outside the perimeter and adding more barbed wire, concertina, tangle foot, and double apron while the enemy mortared and rocketed us. The days of diddybopping around the base was gone!! To Lt. Col. Kroen I'm sure that THE KHE SANH VETS would be happy to have you as a member of our fraternity. I had many friends with 1/9 some made it back to the world while others did not. If you are interested Rev. Ray Stubbe (the founder of the Khe Sanh Vets) and John Prados wrote a book entitled "Valley of Decision" it is an excellent look back at Khe Sanh the battle that effected all our lives till we breathe our last breath.
Cpl. G.S. Hecknauer
I DROPPED EVERYTHING
When I enlisted in our Corps my father gave me the P-38 (John Wayne) he carried on his key ring. I carried it on my key ring along with an extra dog tag starting Oct 65. This including my time in Nam from 1Dec. 67 to 25 Jul 69 as a crew chief with VMO-6. Pretty much covered all of I Corps area. Con Thien, Rockpile, Razorback, Khe Sanh, Ashau Valley. He!!, I don't remember all the places we went. I do remember trying to open a can of C's one day and suddenly taking fire. I dropped everything and did my job. Some where along the way it was kicked out of the bird. Figured I'd lost it for good, and what am I going to tell dad? About a month later I received a small brown bubble envelope at mail call. Guess what was inside. I've always thought it hit some poor grunt on the head and scared the life out of him. I still have the dog tag on my key ring today.
But my dad - he carried that opener on Guadalcanal, Saipan and Tinian. He was an Army engineer and arrived on the canal in Dec. '42. The only time he ever mentioned his job during WWII was a comment while we were watching a war movie (probably Guadalcanal Diary) about closing the caves the Japanese were hold up in and how bad he felt about having to kill the local natives who were being used as human shields. That can opener is still with me all these years later. Today it does duty locked in my safe until I decide what to do with it. Dbushlow
GET OVER IT
Sgt Grit, I wanted to add my two cents to the Mustang Major's comments about reservists. Unfortunately we have a lot of uneducated people out there who love to stir up sh%t about the reserves. To those who have no clue, look at all those Marines that served on Iwo Jima, when you look at their graves you will see USMCR--- note the R. For Reserves. Either way, the active duty force will always need the reserves.. get over it.
SSGT- Desert Storm
B Company, 8th Tanks, 4th Marine Division!!
TELL OUR MOTHERS
AFTER READING CPL. GLENN "SAM" BASS's ACCOUNT OF HIS ARRIVAL IN SAN DIEGO TO BEGIN HIS FORMAL EDUCATION, I REFLECTED BACK TO MY 1/56 ARRIVAL AT THE SAN DIEGO AIRPORT. I WONDER IF THE SAME MARINE WHO HAD THAT OLD INTERNATIONAL HARVESTER TRUCK WAS THEN DRIVING A EARLY 50s MARINE GREEN CHEVY 4-DOOR. BEING AS MY LAST NAME STARTED WITH "A", I CARRIED THE ORDERS FOR OUR FOUR PERSON GROUP FROM MINNESOTA. UPON ARRIVAL I CALLED MCRD AND, AS ORDERED, ADVISED THAT WE WERE AT THE AIRPORT AND READY FOR PICK-UP. INSTRUCTIONS WERE TO WAIT OUTSIDE AND STAY TOGETHER. THE PLACE WAS EXTREMELY BUSY AND WHEN THE CHEVY PULLED TO THE CURB THE VERY EAGER MR. DUMBSH_T, WHO LAST NAME STARTED WITH "A" OPENED THE REAR DOOR AND STARTED CLIMBING IN. WELL LET ME TELL YOU, BROTHER MARINES, MY A__ WAS HAULED OUT OF THERE SO QUICKLY I THOUGHT I'D BEEN BLASTED OUT. I WAS ORDERED TO STAND AT ATTENTION IN FRONT OF THE WHOLE WORLD OF TRAVELERS, AND MY 3 NEW COMRADES WERE ORDERED TO STAND IN SINGLE FILE BEHIND ME, EACH WITH THERE NOSE IN THE HAIR OF THE PERSON IN FRONT AND THERE **** PRESSING ON THE BUTT OF THE PERSON IN FRONT! I CAN TELL YOU, MY WORLD'S WORSE IMITATION OF A DUCK-TAIL GOT A NOSE IN THE BACK OF IT AND I GOT TWO BULGING EYES AND ONE HUGE MOUTH RIGHT IN MY FACE AND I WAS TOLD FOR ABOUT 2-3 MINUTES THE ERROR OF MY WAYS IN LANGUAGE I COULD NEVER MISTAKE. AS CPL. BASS THOUGHT, I THOUGHT THE SAME, "HOLY S__T, WHAT IN THE H_LL HAVE I DONE WITH MY LIFE!" THOUGH FRIGHTENED HALF OUT OF MY MIND, IT WAS JUST THE BEGINNING OF A LOVE AFFAIR THAT STILL HASN'T ENDED.
AND, IN PARTING, I REMEMBER GETTING TO MCRD JUST IN TIME FOR NOON CHOW. IT WAS CUT UP HOT DOGS IN BEANS ON WHITE RICE WITH KOOL-AID TO WASH IT DOWN, A BIG, HUGE METAL CUP OF THE STUFF, A LIQUID THAT I COULDN'T STAND. WITH A STILL CHURNING STOMACH, FROM MY EARLIER ENCOUNTER, I ATE THE MEAL AND TRIED TO DUMP THE KOOL-AID WHEN EXITING THE CHOW HALL. SECOND LESSON OF THE DAY, YOU CONSUME IT ALL. I CAN STILL REMEMBER HAVING TO GULP THAT WHOLE THING DOWN BEFORE I COULD LEAVE. I ALSO REMEMBER GETTING INTO THE RACK THAT FIRST NIGHT ABOUT ONE A.M. ONLY TO BE AWAKENED AT TWO SO WE COULD WRITE HOME AND TELL OUR MOTHERS HOW MUCH WE LOVED THE MARINES. SUCH COMPASSION.
SEMPER FI TO ALL AND A JOB WELL DONE AND BE SAFE TO ALL OUR FORCES.
JIM ABLE, SGT, 1956-62
Okay, Ron, was nice to see your letter last week. Yes, I vaguely remember the incident with your leech bite. Didn't I at least tell you to keep the area clean till you were sure of no infection. If I didn't, sorry about that. Anyway you did the only thing you could about the leech -- touch the thing with a lit cigarette or a hot match and they come right off. I didn't ever see any of them cause a problem. Their penetration of the skin was very slight. But nothing like the rat bites we had at Khe Sanh which is what I wanted to mention next. Pulled up the Khe Sanh Vets. Assn. website and saw where the next reunion is in Dallas in July. I just might be able to go. I live in Beaumont. Did you say some of the guys from B/1/13 go to the reunions? Would love to see you guys again. Also pulled up the Rats of Khe Sanh website. Very interesting and funny reading. I think the rat situation must have got worse after we left but there were some BIG ones while we were there too. I remember we made some cages and we would trap some of those big suckers. We had a 55 gal. drum of water and we would immerse the cage in the drum till the rat would drown. Guess I better be careful what I'm saying -- John Kerry might consider that an atrocity of war. I still have my B/1/13 patch too. I have it framed and mounted on a wall with my other awards and military certificates. Found some pictures the other day where we were cooking steaks on Marine Corps Birthday, 1966. Think you said you joined us in March, 67 but I'll bet you remember most everybody's name. I've forgotten a lot of those guys names. You seem to have a great memory.
Thanks and Semper Fi,
An elderly retired Marine moved into a retirement community where good looking eligible men are at a premium. After he had been there for a week he went to confession and said, "Bless me Father, for I have sinned. Last week I was with seven different women."
The priest said, "Take seven lemons, squeeze them into a glass and drink the juice without pausing."
"Will that cleanse me of my sins, Father?"
"No," replied the priest. "But it'll wipe that grin off your face."
In response to Pastor Mark N. Johnston comments about Famous Marines in your last newsletter, I would like to invite everyone to a 'Webpage' dedicated to both famous and infamous Marines at: http://www.stevenshiles.com/Famous_Marines.html Also, I get questions from time to time, this one was about Walt Disney .. the question ... was he a Marine and did he get an honorable discharge? Does anyone know? Sorry if I left out anyone, please send me an email with a brief description and I will add them.
J. Shiles (website administrator)
STAY FOCUSED ON OUR PRIMARY MISSION
I am now herding high school juniors through U.S. History, with a framed portrait of Chesty up on my classroom wall to keep me straight. A former career Air Force friend asked me recently what it is about Marines that makes them so special. This is what I told him:
We are primarily in the business of killing people and blowing stuff up, and we tend to stay focused on our primary mission. We just had our annual "Career Fair", at our high school, and the Marines sent two physically-fit, "high and tight" haircutted, staff sergeant recruiters. They brought a portable pull-up bar along, set it up next to their table, and wouldn't talk to any kid who couldn't do at least 8 dead-hang pull-ups!
One was in Dress Blues, with ribbons and badges. His shooting badges were both "Expert" with the extra award bars...Rifle, 6th award, Pistol, 5th award... and he wasn't even a grunt! Cannon-cocker. The other was in the new Marine green combat utility uniform, the patented, computer-designed, "flectar" pattern, his sleeves rolled up over his impressive biceps, squinty-eyed from the desert sun, and looked like he could chew nails. He was just back from Iraq, where he was an 0311 platoon sergeant. Some kid whose brother was in the Army asked him what the difference between the Army and the Marines in Iraq was, and he replied, succinctly, "Better training. I brought all the Marines in MY squad back home." 'Nuf said. It ain't bragging if you can back it up.
Don Kaag, LTC, Armor, AUS(Ret.) and...
SGT and CPT of Marines
As a member of the Corps from 1/54 to 1/57 assigned to 4.2 Mortar Co, 2nd marines, 2nd Marine Division, FMF at Camp Lejeune N.C. General Chesty Puller was the CG, during my stay at Lejeune, and that is when he instituted the 96 Hr pass, and ability to go on liberty in civies started. It was also joked that he wanted to get rid of the soda and pogy bait machines and replace them with beer Machines. I remember purchasing a couple of Green wool dress shirts to be worn with Greens and a khaki tie or with utilities, These shirts of course were not to be worn off base. To me, these shirts worn with a Battle Jacket and P!ss Cutter was the "Sharpest" looking uniform ever, except for Dress Blues! But I guess like all good things they are just a fond memory. After Just passing my 50 anniversary of joining the Corps I thought my memories were worth passing on to the New Breed.
J Spratt, Sgt..1464584
REUNION FOX 2/5 VIETNAM
I ALWAYS ENJOY YOUR NEWSLETTER AND ALL THE SWAPPING OF MARINE EXPERIENCES FROM THE "DELTA TO THE DMZ".....I LAUGH AND CRY ALL AT THE SAME TIME. THE BROTHERHOOD LIVES ON AND WE CAN ALL BE PROUD AS H*LL....JUST A NOTE THAT THIS JULY THERE WILL BE THE ANNUAL REUNION OF FOX COMPANY, 2ND BN, 5TH MARINES (VIET-NAM ERA 65 - 71)IN RENO, NEVADA FROM JULY 29 TO AUG. 2ND AND ALTHOUGH MOST OF THE MARINES ARE FROM FOX COMPANY, WE INVITE ANY MARINE FROM ANY ERA TO JOIN US IF POSSIBLE....MY FIRST TIME WAS TWO YEARS AGO AND WHEN I SAT DOWN ONE NIGHT FROM 8 PM TO 4 AM THE NEXT MORNING, I GOT A FULL VIEW OF MY COMPANIES EXPLOITS, OPERATIONS AND IMMENSE HISTORY OF ONE OF THE MOST DECORATED REGIMENTS IN THE MARINE CORPS....
A LOT OF THE WIVES AND FAMILIES COME AS WELL AND IT IS A JOY TO SEE THEM HOB-KNOBBING WITH MY COMRADES IN ARMS WHO BRING OUR EXPERIENCES TO LIFE IN THEIR EYES.....AND AS WE PREPARE TO DEPART, WE ALL STAND IN A CIRCLE HOLDING HANDS AND CALL OUT THE NAMES OF OUR BROTHERS WHO DID NOT RETURN AND WILL LIVE IN OUR HEARS ALWAYS...I INVITE YOU TO EXPERIENCE THE REASON WHY THE UNITED STATE MARINES ARE A BROTHERHOOD LIKE NO OTHER......SEMPER FI MY BROTHERS........YOU WILL LIVE IN MY HEART AND SOUL FOREVER...
CLIFFORD IVIE - SQUAD LDR.& CPL OF MARINES, FOX 2/5, 69-70
For whatever it is worth to everyone. Proudly displayed on the back window of my vehicle is the "Coaster Size " Marine Corps decal. Today, while running late for an appointment, I was pulled over doing 59 in a 40 mph zone. The unmarked Sheriff's Deputy nailed me "Big Time." As I departed my vehicle he urgently informed me to get back into my Grand Cherokee. When he finally approached me, he asked "Are you a Marine" ? I replied that I am an "Inactive Marine. He asked for my license and then said.....Slow down a little......."I never give tickets to Marines." I asked him if he was in the Corps.....He stated that he was NOT, however most of his friends were in the Corps, and that he has a tremendous amount of respect for Marines.....Hal-le-lu-ah, Baaaaaaaaaybeeeeeeee !!!!!! I dodged THAT 81 mm rocket fire. All due to the fact that he spotted my decal and let me SLIDE.
Cpl Ray "Frenchie" Frechette 1963-1967 RVN 9-65 -6-66
I DO RECALL A GROUP OF IRAQIS
To Stretch and All,
Concerning the issue of the Combat Action Ribbon during Operation Desert Shield/Storm, the information I was given by the powers that be (anyone who was in direct support North of the Mine Field Belts) were candidates for the C.A.R. When you consider that we had only so many avenues through the Mine Fields, and the possible threat of a massive counter attack (which thankfully never happened) we may have to pick our way through other points in the obstacle (non cleared) also there was a lot of ordnance (of the nature of unexploded) in our field of operation. There were also the weapons stores in the t69(some of you would call them t62's but these were of Chinese origin) that were still cooking off. Our convoy (combat train Task Force Shepard) had come under direct fire from some straggler t69's in a tree line around the Emirs Ranch (no known hits) but it was hostile fire just the same, our security vehicles plus a section of Cobras took out the bad guys.
I do recall a group of Iraqis (not epw's because they had not made the safety of our lines) were taken out by some of there own Arty (Looked like something out of a Monty Python skit) an estimated 155mm R.A.P took out the group, the poor slobs that were hit were launched