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Sgt. Grit:
As I recall it (1942 - 1946 version) the saying was "If it moves, salute it; if it doesn't move, pick it up; if you can't pick it up, paint it!" Came from the USMC/US Navy connection.
- Dave Engler (410936).


Spring Break 2003 & 2004 Shirts

Our Spring Break Iraq 2003 and 2004 shirts won't be back for long so get one while they are in stock! Show how you spent your Spring Break in the hot sun fighting for freedom. Available ONLY through May 21st.

Auto Items Special

Auto Items on Special This Week

Show your pride for the Corps by displaying these Auto items proudly on your vehicle... 20% off for a short time only.

GriTogether 06 was a Huge Success!

GriTogether was a Huge Success! The 3rd Annual GriTogether was an incredible time. We had the YL-37 drop in, an excellent DJ, free food, and an enormous crowd. See pictures here.


Hi Sarge!
Just returned from the fourth annual reunion of the "Birdcage Marines" who were posted to an obscure corner of Fort Campbell, KY (home of the 101st Airborne) between 1952 and 1965. This facility was the largest of thirteen similar sites around the country designed for a-weapons storage and modification activities. Officially it was called "Marine Barracks - Clarksville Base, TN", but those of us who served there referred to it as" the Birdcage". Many times we transported weapons form the Birdcage to Campbell AFB, a SAC base located across Ft. Campbell. There, the units were loaded on to C-5A Starlifters and taken elsewhere. Everything else gave way to our convoys and all cross traffic was stopped well short of our route. It was serious business and we took our jobs seriously, too.

It is inactive now, but as we toured the ten-foot thick concrete bunkers dug deep into the KY hillsides, we were reminded of the potential for atomic warfare from our then arch- enemy, the USSR. Post Cold War researchers tell us that Soviet documents opened since 1989, reveal that the Birdcage was on the USSR's "top ten" ICBM targets if it came to all-out atomic war. A book is being written about the Birdcage era and soon more folks will know about the Marines who helped keep the peace some fifty years ago.

We served in a time when the Korean War had just ended and a Marine was regarded as "just another serviceman". But we knew than as we now know, what we did was vital to the national security. We were just kids, but we carried weapons with chambered rounds and we were not afraid to use them in the right circumstances.

Sometimes some of us wish we could have served in a "shooting war" to see if our training was valid. But birth years and wars are random events so we did not have that opportunity. Still, we are proud to be Marine veterans and in a strange way, we envy those youngsters in Iraq and other zones who are America's finest. We pray for them daily and wish them the best. We're not as mean, not as lean (my socks still fit!), but we're still Marines.

Semper Fi!
John Tonkin
Birdcager 1956 - 58
A Co. 1st Plt.

CB/Marine Group

Sgt. Grit,

My father passed away in 1988 due to cancer, but he was Another Proud Navy man who served with the Marines! My Fathers Battalion, the 121st N.C.B. was truly a different kind of an outfit, an uncommon CB/Marine Group. Here is his story, written by him. We trained and equipped as part of a regular Marine Corps landing force with the 20th Marines, Fourth Marine Division during WW2. We had regular Naval boot training and then trained at Lejeune with Marine DI's, were given Marine uniforms and told to send our Navy ones home. Our Battalion kind of lost its identity when we became part of the 20th Marine Regiment. Wearing Marine uniforms and equivalent stripes, we blended in quite well. I guess we were looked upon as Marines at that time. It was interesting, however, to see our group lined up for pre- liberty inspections. You never saw so many stripes in a Marine group. When you converted Navy rank with Marine stripes, it was something to behold. We had many three, four, five and six stripe Sergeants. We had many skilled guys who came in with elevated ranks. Even lowly Seaman first class had Corporal stripes. Our ranks looked more like an NCO assembly. I fired a Springfield 03, for record, but was given a "BAR" for the Saipan, Tinian invasions. The mix of amphibious training along with the tramping around in the North Carolina and California woods and desert, prepared us for our task of on beach support (shore-party) at Roi-Namur, Saipan and Tinian. I was a member of a squad of Seabees and Marines who furnished a perimeter guard around the shore-party. I was one of the younger guys in the battalion. I was 18 when I enlisted. I remember well my thoughts about the older guys in our group. The difference between an 18 year old and some of the skilled 25 to 35 year olds was great. There were so many skilled workers in our battalion. I remember seeing great things fixed, built and innovated by them. I have a tremendous amount of pride regarding my service with the USMC, 4th Marine Division!

Joe Ratomski 36 Years N.Y.P.D. Bronx N.Y.
Semper - Fi

Of Course

Grit, just finished reading the latest newsletter, and it reminded me of what happened to me shortly after graduating from the University of Parris Island. I went TAD to Guard Company for 30 days. My duty there was to walk the WM Battalion area as an MP. I carried just a nightstick. The two primary responsibilities of that post were to make sure that no one parked in front of the barracks for more than the 10 minute posted time limit and to make sure that no male personnel were on the road behind the WM recruit barracks. It just so happened that the showers for those barracks were facing out to that road and most of the time, the windows were open to allow the steam from the showers to escape. Of course it became clear as to why male personnel were not suppose to be behind the barracks but I appreciated the fact that no one never figured out that the MP's walking that post were all male. Next to that, the most fun that I had was chasing parkers away, especially if they had a Drill Instructor sticker on their car. I loved the 2000 to 2400 shift. Can you imagine, a freshly minted Marine being able to order DI's around. It was almost as much fun as guarding that road behind the barracks. Of course as a good Marine who follows orders to the nth degree, I spent a lot of time making sure that there were no male personnel sneaking around behind those barracks.

John Papietro
Former Cpl. of Marines


we used to heat them with c-4, if you were in your hooch or a hole dug in the ground covered with a poncho or shelter halve you didn't have to worry about the fumes from the sterno burning your eyes out. they all tasted good when you were hungry enough to eat the butt out of a dead horse. my favorite were beans and franks, also pound cake and peaches, we also made a good mocha out of the coffee and chocolate. in country 65-66 (Arizona country) lovely place to be from--far from!!

jarheadluke usmc 62-68

i used sterno to heat with and if i had no heat i ate it cold. My favorite was dehydrated beef hot or cold it was good. plus it had a brownie.
John Freeman

I really don't have any good stories, only one observation. When I discovered that I could eat the scrambled eggs in C-Rations cold, I knew then that I could eat anything.
Sgt. M.E. Compton, K411 '66-'68

Circuitous Travel Leave
by Norm Urban

This is not a Viet Nam sea story, but rather a "leaving Viet Nam" sea story, but it really happened, and it's pretty incredible. Time frame is 1965-1966.

I was a 1st Lt helicopter pilot flying for HMM-163 out of Hue- Phu Bai.

I had heard about a thing called circuitous travel leave. As I understood, it meant that you could take leave on the way to your next duty station and travel, via government transportation, on a space available basis, to a few other places enroute. Since there was a reasonable chance I wouldn't survive, I thought I'd try to take advantage of this deal, just in case I did make it through my tour. With my squadron mate, 1stLt Joe Weiss, we got out an atlas, and put in for circuitous travel leave, requesting permission from HQ Marine Corps, to travel to EVERY FREE WORLD country on the map!

Six months later, our orders came through! We were authorized to travel Anywhere In The WORLD, except Communist countries on government transportation - space available. Our orders were about 3 inches thick, and, I think, totally unique.

In early June '66, Joe and I left HMM-163, now at Marble Mountain, and flew on an AF Reserve C-97 back to Okinawa, for transportation back to CONUS. We checked in to the travel desk at Naha AFB, where the AF travel NCOIC said, "Sir, I've never seen orders like this, and I don't know what to do with you." Joe and I explained that it was up to us to find transportation going where we wanted to go, at which time we would inform him, and he could manifest us, stamp our orders, and our leave would begin.

We then left Naha and proceeded to party hearty for about two weeks. Eventually, after having new wardrobes made, buying our stereo gear and cameras, and getting shots and passports, we reported back to Naha to catch the "Embassy Flight" to Bangkok, Thailand. The "Embassy Flight" was (is) a regular USAF flight that circumnavigates the globe. Comfortable in a C-141 Starlifter, we headed back over Viet Nam to Bangkok.

Bangkok was familiar, since we had both had a 3 day R&R there. We looked up and went to the Air America office, saying we wanted a job in the near future. One of my most memorable experiences in Bangkok was trying to get a visa at the Indian embassy for the Embassy Flight stop in New Delhi. We had to endure a two hour-long harangue from some low level Indian bureaucrat about how the US shouldn't be in Viet Nam, blah, blah, blah. But, eventually, he stamped our passports, and we got on the Embassy Flight to New Delhi.

New Delhi was really an eye-opener. People were literally starving in the streets, and looked like it. Meanwhile, our taxi, weaving among cycles, animals, trucks, pedestrians, and other autos, took us to the YWCA, where we spent the night. No special remembrances here.

The next day, it was back on the Starlifter, to Karachi, then Tehran, Riyadh and eventually Madrid, Spain. Now party time began to take its' toll. Joe got pretty sick and checked into the base infirmary at Terrejon AFB in Madrid. While he was in the hospital, I stayed in a downtown Madrid hotel, playing tourist and looking for girls. Did the Prado museum every day. Even today, I can still tell a Goya from a Picasso.

Three days later, Joe was released and we headed for base ops to see where we could go. We noticed a Marine VIP C-47 on the base tarmac. There aren't too many Marines in Europe, so this had to be unusual. When we got to Operations, the C-47 flight crew explained that the aircraft belonged to a Marine General Officer assigned to NATO, and they were heading back to London. When we asked for a ride, they, of course said, "Ask the General." So we did.

When the General arrived, we did our most military salutes, and requested, if space was available, that we be allowed to tag along to London. The General (I wish I could remember his name) said "Sure! As a matter of fact, I'm taking over the Marine Air Wing in DaNang in a few weeks, and I've some questions I'd like to ask you guys." We spent the entire flight telling the General how the war should be fought from the point of view of two 1stLt H-34 drivers. When we landed at a military field outside of London, the General said to his crew, "Take these officers anywhere they'd like to go." Joe and I both said, "Paris!" Two hours later, we were deposited at a military field just outside Paris. We checked into the B.O.Q.

The next morning, there was a flight leaving for Germany. Joe was engaged to a Lufthansa flight attendant and wanted to visit her parents, so Paris is where we parted company. We made plans to contact each other later in our leave, but it never happened.

Never having been in Europe before, I kinda had to feel my way. I made friends with a U.S. Army Huey driver and talked him into flying me into the city. I flew left seat and we landed right next to the Arc d' Triumph, where I stepped out in civvies, with a B-4 bag in each hand. I had heard about a small, family operated hotel (pension) on the left bank, which catered to military personnel. I took a cab there and checked in.

I had also heard about an Officer's Club in a downtown building, near the U.S. Embassy. I cleaned up and made my way there. Sitting at the bar, I got into a conversation with a civilian guy who worked at the embassy, but he wouldn't tell me what he did there. When I explained my situation, he suggested that I contact the USMC Embassy Guard. I explained that officers weren't really supposed to fraternize with enlisted, but he pooh-poohed the whole concept, and insisted that these guys were special and that he take me to their quarters. We got into his car and in a few minutes pulled up in front of a rather non- descript warehouse. After climbing about eight flights of stairs, we entered the top floor quarters of the Paris USMC Embassy Guard. It was like a rather nice motel German cook 24/7, rec room, etc. He introduced me to the NCOIC, a Gunny, who after hearing my tale, said, "Sir, we are going to show you Paris." I don't remember too much about the next week or so.

The Embassy Guard tour of duty is an eight-hour shift, three per day of course. So one third of the guys are coming off duty, ready to party, every eight hours. They handed me off, one shift to the next. They took me to the Moulin Rouge and the Crazy Horse Saloon, where they knew and hung out with all the girls. They took me to private parties all over Paris. They put me to bed. They washed and ironed my civvies. They shined my shoes. A few hours later, they said once again, "Come on, Lieutenant, we've got a party to get to." After coming half way around the world, and after a week (I think) of this, I was a goner.

I spent the last three days of my Paris leave flat on my back in my pension hotel room. Sleeping. And not much else. I think I ate a meal or two. Eventually, I headed for the airport to catch the Embassy Flight to McGuire AFB in N.J.

In uniform (you had to be in uniform on the flight), I was walking slowly down a side street behind a museum, on the left bank, with a suitcase in each hand. Coming toward me was a gnarled, stooped, old Frenchman, hobbling with a cane. As he approached me, he moved in front of me, and I halted. I noticed a ribbon on his lapel. He started speaking to me, very emotionally, in French. As he did, tears began to stream down his cheeks. Eventually, he reached up, (I'm 6'1", he, probably 5') and gave me a kiss on each cheek. I was, and still am, dumfounded, since, not speaking French, I had no idea what he was saying. I can only assume that he was a French veteran who worked with Marines in the Pacific in WW2, or Europe in WW1. Either way, he was saluting my uniform as a U.S. Marine.

The rest is uneventful. Except that I arrived back in the States on Fourth of July weekend and every time a firecracker went off, I hit the deck. Welcome back to the world.

3/1 Reunion

Company Reunion: Lima Co., 3rd Battalion, 1st Marines; Vietnam 1966-1971. Annual Reunion in Lisle, Illinois at the Wyndam Hotel. The Reunion dates are July 13th through July 16th, 2006. Contact John Harrington at JTCMINC99@MSN.COM for details.

John Harrington
Lima2, 1968-1969

Neat Flame

Sgt Grit,
I wonder if any others will relay this method to you. I was an H-34 helicopter Crew Chief in RVN (64-65) with HMM 365 and I believe we had the easiest method to cook. We simply kept an empty gallon can (Usually was a hydraulic oil can) added a wire bail and filled it with sand or dirt. When AVGAS (drained from the 34) was added it would burn with a neat flame for hours. We had field expedient grills for the top and a hot meal was soon ready. My favorite was turkey loaf. Of course, I had to abandon several of these stoves when they were too hot to put back in the aircraft and we were launching on an emergency med- evac. Regards, Mike Layman, US Marine

Something Extra Used

Hey Grit- Let SSgt H. E. Brown II know I wasn't complaining, I was making an observation. (Come to think of it though, I was always told Marines weren't happy unless they were complaining.) The observation I was making was exactly what the SSgt said about being a Marine "If you are one, be proud of the fact that you had what it takes to be CALLED one." My point was that I was happy with the simple all-encompassing term 'Marine', and I didn't understand why some women Marines I knew on active duty (and later) thought there should be something extra used when referring to them as 'Marine'.

All the terms the SSgt used to describe our internal identification were excellent; "grunts, cannon-c0ckers, track- heads, airdales, tunnel-rats, jocks and I don't know what all? Do you think that any infantryman doesn't grin a little bit inside hearing himself referred to as a grunt? Or an artilleryman referred to as a cannon-c0cker? A tanker being called a track-head? An air winger being referred to as an airdale? A small-statured Marine being called a tunnel-rat? A helicopter or fighter pilot being referred to as a jock? " and were right on target, as was that assessment. Those terms are used to describe your MOS and sometimes how well the MOS fits you. I personally don't feel being female falls into that category because it took no skill or hard work on my part to end up that way, it was a chromosome thing I drew on random so how am I supposed to feel like I need a special nickname based on an accident of birth? That isn't how you earn regard. If other women Marines feel it is important to have a term which differentiates them from males then they can use it. I was happy with Marine all along, (although I did appreciate the separation of Head facilities.)

Tell the SSgt respectfully to 'cease fire'- I think the ones who should "Get over it" are those asking for an extra term (based on nothing more than a different chromosome) beyond "Marine" when there is none of higher regard. Please tell him also how much those of us following him appreciate his service to our Corps, and are aware of what we have to live up to. He and his like left big boots to fill.

Elizabeth Tribelli

Midnight Snack

The best---Ham & Lima Beans---1. being a good southern boy, this is heaven. 2. No one else liked them so I had an un-ending supply. 3. Heat them---I don't recall very many times when we had the time to stop and "Dine". We always ate on the hump (right out of the can). ---Hey it didn't get any better & I always had a midnight snack. I still like them.

Hight, Henry H.--Cpl---"Recon" 1961-1965

Lady Myself

Sgt Grit,
Two things: one, As a former Marine and a lady myself I agree with H E Brown II. Those Lady Marines who made through to be called Marine, stop your whining, you make the rest of us look bad! and two, the first letter posted by GySgt Benedick I wonder if this is the Gunny from 9th Comm? If so congrats on the kids enlisting! If this is not the same GySgt congrats anyway, be proud.

Sgt Sutherland

Only Problem

To L/CPL Cummings

You made the right choice. I once heard somebody say, " The only problem with him is his ' I 's are too close together." Look at your letter. It's all about you .... I, I, I,. They didn't need you and you would not have helped them.

Ken Mathis Cpl. of Marines 59/63 Semper Fi.

Manners, Obedience

Hey Sgt. Grit.
Would like to add my little story in your great newsletter if I may.
I joined the active Marine Reserve unit, 1st inf Bn, 2nd Div, 5th Marines at Fort Schyler Bx. NY in 1947 at 17 years old with three other buddies. we were trained by reserve Marine veterans, went to summer camp at Lejeune, Little Creek VA, Albany GA. and other places I cannot remember [ 76 years old, getting rusty ] In May of 1951 we were activated and went through Boot at Paris Island. I was in Platoon 266 Fourth Recruit Bn.

My DIs. were SSgt RD Brooks SSgt TL Dillon and CPL Sutphn [ hope the spelling is right, 6' rebel, built like a locomotive ] I want to say here and now that all the training I received while in the reserve helped me to go through boot with a great deal of confidence in myself and respect for all the veterans that taught me how to march, use my M1 rifle [ fired expert at range ] Wear my uniform with pride and look like a Marine, manners, obedience, respect and a hundred other things that make you a MAN. [ all high school grads. should have to serve three years in the military, no ifs and or butts. become MEN ] We were getting ready to go to Korea after boot. We trained at Lejeune.

I loved my Marine Corps service and wish I could go over and send back home one of the young ones.

My 22 year old Grandson is a Marine and is back from 9 months of combat in Iraq, thank god he is all right.


Toughest Decision

Good morning Sgt, I'm writing this letter to say thank you to all those loving people, who have written numerous letters to you, it's awesome to read over the letters from every walk of life, someone has been a Marine, a wife, father/mother daughter/son and grand parents and aunts/uncles, brother/sister and most recently the girl friends/fiancé's; it's truly a great experience serving our country as the worlds finest United States Marines. I just want to thank them too for being a vital part of that Marine/Corpsman's life. Thank You. It means so much.

I've had to make the toughest or I should say one of the toughest decision in my life, the time has come when I must say good bye to active duty, I've requested permission to retire from our beloved Corps, I plan on retiring next May with 30 years of shock and awe experiences of my life; I've meet some of the greatest men/women ever from all over the world that serve beside me in the last 29 years and those who gone before us.

On May 29th I'll be speaking at the National Cemetery here in New Bern for our Memorial Day observance; I have one motto that I preach to my Marines/Corpsman it's titled "Passing on the Torch" I want to make sure that every person who reads your news letters know that if they take a few moments and go over The Marine's Hymn, they'll find it's true.

I wont' write word for word, but I just want my fellow Americans to know that in my two tours in Iraq one statement stood out on the side of one small dirt covered bunker's that read: "May no one be left behind" and inside this cement bunker was the morgue, I'd stand outside and watch our fallen angles come in and go out for that long flight back home, the gentle care a fellow Marine has for his own is something to see, after several long day's and hours and sitting inside the morgue I can attest that the last stanza of The Marines Hymn is so true today;

Here's health to you and to our Corps which we are proud to serve; In many a strife we've fought for life And never lost our nerve If the Army and the Navy Ever look on Heaven's scenes, They'll find the streets are guarded by United States Marines.

Forever stamped on my heart. The love of our Corps and America.

God Bless you all.
Semper Fi.
Sgt Maj Terry L. Jessip
MCAS Cherry Point, NC.


Dear Sgt. Grit,

After serving as the CO of Bravo Company, 7th Engineers in 66/67, I returned to the states for a short tour in Philadelphia and then went on to the Army Engineer School for a year. From there, it was off to a second tour in Vietnam on Joint Staff tour with few Marines around. . . Then it was back to the states for a tour as Marine Liaison Officer at a Navy Lab in Port Hueneme and then a two year tour with the MAAG in Indonesia.

From '69 to 1980, I'd been away from my beloved Marine Corps so when I returned to Pendleton to retire, I hauled out my best uniform to report in at Base Headquarters forgetting that a Marine LtCol. was still a bit of a big wheel at an FMF base. Anyway, as I walked down this long passageway a group of Marines up ahead of me shouted "Gangway!!!" and snapped to attention up against the bulkhead! This old Mustang joined them by jumping up against the wall also looking behind me to see who was coming. . .only to find out that I had caused all that commotion!

Once a trooper always a trooper. . .I guess.

Dick Phaneuf
LtCol. USMC (Ret.)


All Marines and Corpsmen who were with FLC, FLSG Alpha, and FLSG Bravo in Vietnam, are invited to attend the annual reunion. This year it is being held in Philadelphia, Pa. on August 3rd thru 6th. When making reservations mention FLC-FLSG,USMC REUNION. It will be held at:

Best Western Hotel Philadelphia Northeast, 11580 Roosevelt Boulevard, Philadelphia, Pa., 19116 (215)464-9500

For more information send email to flsg_phila06 @ comcast.net or call 609-693-3165

Shoes First

Sgt Grit, Having just read the letter from John Bellflower, Capt. USAF, I felt I had to respond. I was in the Marine Corps from 1960 to 1964. My MOS was 0121/0141. As the years past by I feel more strongly about my time in the Corps then when I was actually serving. I feel the greatest pride hen the Marines Hymn is played and someone walks by and says Semper Fi. I still do a lot of things that I was taught in boot camp, like put on you shoes first before your trousers as not to put creases in them and to blouse you shirt. I still remember by service number from 1960, but a lot of phone numbers escape me. My wife doesn't quite understand what it means to me to be a Marine. She says after all you were only in the Marine for four years! I have a younger brother and sister in law who were in the Army, and I never once hear them talk about their experiences there. I see guys that were in other branches of the services and they never acknowledge each other on the street. Any place I go, if I am wearing my Marine jacket or cover, someone always comes up and says Semper Fi, Marine. There is a deep pride in being called a Marine, whether present or former Marine. We are all brothers and will always remain so.

Semper Fi Marines
Albert DiGiacomo Cpl (Ret) USMC 60-64

Pvt Michael LUEKING, who completed recruit training last week, will not be allowed to wear his uniform at his high school graduation ceremony at Holdenville High School, Holdenville, OK. School officials threatened not to let Pvt LUEKING walk across the stage to accept his diploma if he did wear his dress blues, as he intended all along. It appears that a lack of patriotism or recognition of patriotism is limited only to Colorado high schools.

Always Wear

Pvt LUEKING, regardless of the school board's ruling, I salute you for your perseverance in completing your education -- especially when a significant percentage of students drop out -- and for successful completion of recruit training. Always wear your uniform with pride andhold your head high.

Semper Fidelis
GySgt W. Moore, USMC (Ret)

Take A Chance

If All former Marines from this little town had been informed of this. I'm very sure They would have dressed up in their dress blues. and ESCORTED THEM into the ball. Who would want or take a chance to stop them. God Loves the Crops. Arnold 'Sal' Slazar, Sgt. 72-78

I Encouraged

LCpl Cummings, Your letter
hit very close to home for me. I know the emotions and the pains that you have. In December of 2002, I was deployed to Kuwait. I had less than 7 months on my enlistment. I was in the desert for about five and a half months. I did not have any injuries, but I separated from the Marine Corps. While I was still in, I was a Corporal and had a heck of a hard charger underneath me. Everyday I encouraged him to go on a MEU. The 24th MEU was on of the greatest experiences for me, and I encouraged anyone that would listen. This Marine listened to his Corporal's advice and went on the MEU. In August of 2004, he was Killed, while on the MEU. Like you I feel that I abandoned my fellow brothers and I let them down. My job was to keep these Marines alive and I did not. There is not a day goes by that I do not think about this Marine, and feel that I am Responsible. However, we have to remember these Marines are doing what they are trained to do. It is also what they loved. You did your part and exceeded it. God Bless You and Semper Fi

CPL Lipe 5811 1999/2003

Common Size

Regarding the letter from Jim Thompson, Charlie Co."The Walking Dead" 68-69. I was in Nam with the 7th Engineer Bn. from the summer of 65 to the summer of 66 and we used the same flak jackets that were in the movie. I also wore the black boots because my boot size was the most common size and I never did get a pair of jungle boots. Now maybe in 68 and 69 the gear was a little different, I don't know, I left the Corps in Sept. of 67.

Orlando R. LaRosa
1st Bridge Co.
7th Engineer Bn.
Semper Fi


Sgt. Grit:

The death of Heavyweight Boxing Champion Floyd Patterson a few days ago (11 May 2006) brought back memories of my escorting him through our Command Post in the Third Marine Division in Vietnam in 1967.

Attached is an excerpt from the Gen. Hochmuth story I wrote (view story) that has pictures of that Patterson visit, and a couple of other celebrities as well.

Jerry Merna
Mustang 1stLt USMC (Ret.)

2/11 Reunion

Dear Lindsey,
I get the newsletter quite regularly however I did not receive March 2,2006. I was most interested in a 2/11 reunion announcement to be place in that issue. As it turns out the announcement was there but the web-page address was omitted. Now it is May. The reunion is for Second Battalion Eleventh Marines All who have ever served Marines and Corpsmen. June 21-24 2006 in Oceanside California..

The reunion information can be found at the web-page.
Semper Fi.
Michael Paul Weber
201 W. Washington St
Crandon, WI 54520-1368
D-2-11 65/66

I am one of those Beautiful American Marines (BAMS) or Wise American Marines (WAMS) that you HAMS (Half A**ed Marines) keep talking about. I am very proud of my status as a Woman Marine. I went to boot camp at Parris Island in January 1964. I was a member of Platoon 2A.

I went to Quantico out of boot camp, then later to Camp Pendleton. There were seven of us from the same Platoon. I still keep in touch with one of the Gals. One, from Wichita KS, (Linda) married a career Marine. Believe me, we had some good Liberty Times that are still fun to share. Hope to see some of you in Kentucky at the Women Marines Association Convention September first through the sixth.

Semper Fi to all my Brothers and Sisters,
Heidi Tanada

Sauntered Off

Hey Sgt. Grit:
Thank you so much for your newsletter. Just read about the young Marine and the ladies of the WM barracks. Great story! It reminded me of my own story about a gorgeous lady. It was Pearl Harbor 1965 Mar.Det. USS Ticonderoga CAV-14 I was standing Brow Sentry at the foot of the Officers Brow when a delegation of Dignitaries came down I snapped to attention spun my polished M1 with it's chrome bayonet to a sparkling present arms the group walked by and smiled looking me up and down I maintained my best Marine posture for them. But then ten yard out they stopped, and looked back at me, I could see a beautiful young women in a modest but still somewhat low cut dress talking to one of the men in the group and looking and pointing at me. I had already gone back to parade rest and was not prepared for what came next, the beautiful girl in the pretty yellow dress was walking toward me, it was only then that I could read the sash over her shoulder it read MISS HAWAII as I came to present arms again it had a whole new meaning, I did my best to not let it show but I was shaking inside like you not believe, then to top it off she got right in my face and bent over slightly to look under my barracks cover I think my eyes stayed straight ahead I know my peripheral vision was full alert, then she said "OH! he's cute" walked around me and sauntered off, I'm sure she knew she had gotten to me, all I could is watch her walk away and think to myself if I wasn't on duty---------

Sgt. Jack Munger
Mar. Det. USS Ticonderoga
March '64-June '66
Semper Fi


When I first got into country (1968) I remember eating C-rations with the date marked on the box year 1945. We also had a cookbook from Tabasco with ideas to combine C-rations so they would taste better. We heated our C-rations with C-4, A small ball under the can and lit with a match and they were hot. C-4 worked better than the heat tabs they gave us. PFC James Salvador

Ah, nothing got the old mouth watering (or old stomach aching) like a fine old dehydrated beef patty drenched in Tabasco (God bless that company and its spicy blessing) That and a desert of a chocolate chip cake and you were eating like a king! That meal made the old desert storm heat a little more bearable!

SSgt Jason Kanakis
V-22 Osprey Integrated Test Team

Short Rounds

In reply to John Halpin's letter about Parris Island "back in 1966," I was in recruit training in July of that year. I cannot imagine any male Marine being allowed in the female barracks for any reason whatsoever. I believe his story is fabricated. Cheryl Gardner, Adjutant, Greater Nevada Detachment, Marine Corps League

Concerning John Halpin, Sgt 2/9: "Speaking of Women Marines" I do not believe this story happened!

I always thought that old Corps meant being issued herringbone utilities. I didn't get them in ' 61. They did look great! Tom Piercy Cpl 2571 - 1970309
1961 - 1966, Plt 147 PI
NAD Earle, NJ, NCTC Pensacola FL
2nd Radio Bn, Camp Geiger, NC, USS Waldo County LST
Still proud!

Thank you for honoring Doc Frank Gillette. I was also a Corpsman. I also have to honor all of the Marines I served with. Thank you. You were always there for me.

Good Morning Marines,
My baby boy isn't a baby boy any longer, he is THE GUNNY. Although I majored in rhetoric and verbosity I haven't the words to say how proud I am of him. Semper Fi, son.

Bob Granberry
USMC 1961-1968

If you can't carry your injured buddy and his gear, what good are you? Gen. Al Gray

Piece Keeper Bumper Sticker
Piece Keeper Bumper Sticker

Retreat Hell! Chosin Reservoir Bumper Sticker
Retreat Hell! Chosin Reservoir Bumper Sticker

Welcome Home, Job Well Done!
God Bless America
Semper fi
Sgt Grit

New items!

Pewter Flask Set
Pewter Flask Set

Marine Corps Oversize Blanket
Marine Corps Oversize Blanket

Married to the Corps Figurine
Married to the Corps Figurine

In Rememberance T-Shirt
In Rememberance T-Shirt

Pewter Cuff Bangle Bracelet
Pewter Cuff Bangle Bracelet

USMC Bulldog Digi Desert Decal
USMC Bulldog Digi Desert Decal

Glass Circle Award with Base
Glass Circle Award with Base

10-Inch Digital Desert Marine Bear
10" Digital Desert Marine Bear

All New Items - Not in the Catalog!