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AmericanCourage #197     01 APR 2009

I've been a loyal customer of Sgt Grit for many years now and have ALWAYS been happy with the services you provide. I look forward to the newsletter and wanted to add one of my experiences as a Marine dad.

This past September I had the privilege of being at Camp Pendleton when my son returned from his first tour in Iraq with 1 MEF, CLR-15. To see the many wives, girlfriends, moms, dads, loved ones and friends assembled was amazing. All were there regardless of their specific political views, just to see their loved one back safe on American soil.

For those who'd never experienced this moment it was overwhelming and needless to say very emotional. Seeing my son's ear-to-ear smile for the first time in seven months had to rank in the top ten proudest moments in a dad's life. Hugs, laughter and kisses were flowing freely on the parade deck and in the parking that day.

The crowd was dwindling as the Marines were quick to get their gear loaded in the vehicles and 'just get off base'. Evening was falling quickly when even above the sounds of joy and laughter you could hear the sound of a bugle over the p.a. system. Without even thinking and in what seemed to be a seamless movement, my son handed his cold adult beverage off to me, turned toward the flag pole and cracked to attention, rapidly followed by a crisp salute. In that split second that parking lot went from sounds of joy to a peace and calm I'd only experience in church. A quick glance from side to side revealed camie clad Marines in the same position as my son. Without a word soon followed us 'civilians' standing more erect and the placing of our hands over our hearts.

It was a quick 'ceremony', but what amazed me most was those Marines had just gotten back from sand, heat and months without their loved ones and yet..the reverence and pride for the flag was without question. I wish every American could've seen the look of pride and respect that was on each Marine's face as they paid respect to their flag that evening.

It took several minutes after Taps was done sounding off those buildings, at Area 22, for anyone in that parking lot to move or make a sound. Looking around revealed that many loved ones were just as in awe as I was. Without a spoken word those Marines said wonders, that evening, for 'love of country'.

Thank you Marines for that lesson of patriotism and for all you do and are willing to do in the future.

- Gary*
The Few, the Proudest..a Marine Dad*

I Survived Shirts

Dear Sgt. Grit,
A couple years ago I wrote about the Chinese Battle Dressing I picked up in Vietnam and how it was carried in both Afghanistan and Iraq by my air-winger step-son. Well my other step -son deployed last August to Iraq so the Battle Dressing made another trip. I'm pleased to let you know he has returned safely and once again the Battle Dressing is in the family display case.
Semper Fi,
Jack (Doc) Broz
Alpha 1/4
RVN 1969

My mini Marine

Hi, my name is Ashley and my husband is a former Marine. When I met and fell in love with him, he was an active-duty Marine serving at HQBN 1MARDIV, and the Marine Corps has always played a role, one way or another, in our lives. Ashley Hester in pink camo

So, when we found out we were having our first child, I could not wait to find Marine Corps-themed clothes for the Devil Pup. So, I naturally turned to Sgt. Grit and found the cutest outfit. When I bought it, I purposely purchased it a little big so that she could spend more time in it since children have a tendency to grow at an alarming rate. This gave us the added bonus that everyone would be able to read it as we ran around. I gave it to my husband when we found out we were having a girl.

She is now 13 months old, and it barely fits, so I guess it will soon be time for a larger version. It is one of her favorite outfits and she is constantly bringing it to me so that she can wear it. My husband recently turned 30, and he is always looking for good USMC gear. The problem is that I waited too late to order from your fine catalog, so I sent my mother by your brick-and-mortar store to pick up what I wanted to get him. Thank you so much for all you do!

I thought I would send you pictures of our Leatherneck-in-training sporting her favorite outfit. Her father and I will be proud of her no matter what she decides to do in life, but we would feel extremely honored if she were to carry the colors forward as one of the few, the proud, the Marines.

Ashley Hester
(Wife of Cpl Bryant H. Hester, USMC)

I'd Quit Daycare Romper

And I Quote...

"Every child in America should be acquainted with his own country. He should read books that furnish him with ideas that will be useful to him in life and practice. As soon as he opens his lips, he should rehearse the history of his own country." --Noah Webster

Memorial Day Shirts

Sgt Grit,

Letter from MCRD, Marine Barracks, Norfolk VA in Dec 1913 Reading your various messages, newsletters and such, I can't help to see how the older Marines lovingly refer to the Corps as the "old Corps". Now look at the attached scan and tell me if this isn't "Real old Corps"! MCRD, Marine Barracks, Norfolk VA in Dec 1913.

I just added this piece to my USMC postal history collection but I had to share it with others. We talk of brick buildings, others talk of wooden structures but here is a great example of a "Tent Camp".

Semper Fidelis!

Greg Ciesielski
Cpl. USMC 1979-1983

Moose the Bulldog Moose sitting on a bike Moose the Bulldog riding a motorcycle and wearing goggles

This is a few pics of my little Marine...You see we are patriot Guard members and we go when duty calls for our troops I'm the flag manager of the North Shore area of Massachusetts and these were taken on one of our latest missions ...Just wanted to share with you his name is Cpl bruce the moose a.k.a moose



I am a former Marine I'll be 42 in May. I was with the first group of WM's that went 12 weeks starting in 1986 at PI. I will never forget how I felt on Graduation day. I don't think I ever stood so straight, or so proud the moment I was handed my EGA. I am still in contact with 2 of my DI's and several of my fellow WM's. I always thank any veteran I see, no matter the service. I live near Westover Air Reserve Base in Massachusetts. and I swear I see more MARINE stickers here than anywhere else I have lived. To all my Brothers and Sisters, Thank you. And to those who still cry when the flag flies or they here about a soldier who has passed... I'm sure CHESTY doesn't mind

Semper Fi,
CPL Christine Miner 7041/3531
Platoon 13A K company May-July 86

And I Quote...

"Did you ever know a politician that was not 'facing the most critical time in the world's affairs' every time he spoke in public?" --humorist Will Rogers (1879-1935)

Sgt. Grit,

My son, LCpl Ryan Winslow, Scout Plt., 2ND TK BN, was killed in Iraq on 15Apr06. Two of his brothers, Cpl Pablo Mayorga and LCpl Derrick Cothran, died with him when their Humvee hit an IED in Anbar Province. There is no way to describe how terrible this loss is, but good things can come from bad. One of the good things is the acceptance into the Marine Corps family that my wife, daughter, and I have experienced. We became members of the Howlin' Mad Smith Det. of the Marine Corps League 5 weeks after Ryan died.

We have also become close to Marines of the 4th AT BN, Bessemer, Al. I could go on and on about how much these Marines mean to us. I am a former soldier ('66-68), but I have to come to understand, as most of your readers probably already do, that my family is regarded as truly part of the Corps.

We pledge our undying support for the Marine Corps that we have come to love.

We are extremely proud of our son, as we are of all of our troops, and we are proud to be part of the Marine family.

Semper Fi,
George Winslow
Hoover, Al.

Dianne Villano Running in the Gasparilla Hey all. My first 15K .. completed .. Marine Corps Marathon here I come ... 6 races down ... 15 to go !

I didn't compress these before sending so you could actually see "the thrill of victory" .

Ya don't realize how freaking far 9.3 miles actually is until you run it in boots with a pack :)

Dianne Villano and her Mom after running in the Gasparilla 15K The second picture is actually a MOM who came up to me to thank me ... her son happens to be at Haley right now recovering from wounds. It was special beyond words to meet her on course and to cross the finish line with her.

I race in your honor because you served in mine

Semper Fi,

Dianne Villano
Support Our Marines, Inc

Thank you so much for having a memorial page for the Beirut hero's of October 1983. I am the widow of Cpl. Davin Marcell Green USMC. I was 19 yrs. old when we married and I was 19 years when I buried him. Now twenty-six years later, I miss and love him as much as ever. Not only the Marine Corps lost "a few good men", the city of Baltimore lost a good man. I am so proud of all the men who served and the men who will continue to.

It's not who's right, - It's what's right!
USMC 1969-1974

This Ash Wednesday, Jack Robert Gulden, 2218630, Corporal, Parris Island, Khe Sanh, and most of all, a U S MARINE, passed and is now guarding the streets in heaven; who else would God trust? I have buried my very best friend, and don't know where to look for another...May God bless Jack, May God bless the U S Marine Corps, May God bless the USA.

John J Holland, 2229533 (boot to Jack), Parris Island, Marble Mountain, USMC

Dear Staff of Sgt Grit,
My son is a LCPL in the Marine Corps. and is currently on his 2nd deployment. Our family is very close and we have all been staunch supporters of him and his choice to join the Corps. Every one of us have something on all of our vehicles supporting him/USMC.

I would like to thank you for not only the quality of merchandise you sell but for the amount of items you sell. We get almost all of our Marine items from Sgt Grit!

The attached photos are of 3 of the family vehicles and the others are of our son from his first deployment.

Thank you again & keep up the great work! Lori, mother of LCPL Willis Yaney

Semper Fi!

Sebring with Emblem decals and USMC License Plate Rear window of Sebring featuring flag decal and decal decal Red car with USMC decals and license plate that reads Rebel 57 LCPL Willis Yaney standing in front of city in the Middle East LCPL Willis Yaney sitting on top of a tank LCPL Yaney standing in front of a dock White truck with a Marine window graphic featuring a US Flag and the Marine Corps seal

"Taking Chance" raised the issue of "Taps" being sounded (or not, as was the case in the film) as a part of the laying to final rest a fallen hero. From personal experience, I know that the OIC/NCOIC of the Military Detachment serving the final rites works hand-in-glove with both the immediate family and the local Funeral Director. I certainly cannot speak to what is done at Arlington, nor can I speak to each and every case.

However, from personal experience (as a Funeral Director - 'way back in the day), I do know that the Funerals for our fallen heroes have been conducted in a manner that gives greater comfort to the family and less homage to 'tradition.' I have seen instances where the family has requested that either the rifle salute, or "Taps," or both, have been eliminated. Even the graveside Presenting of The Folded Colors has been eliminated (the Colors were given to the family along with the other tokens of the funeral).

And the Military Escort detail has always complied without argument or complaint. Honoring the dead through comforting the living has always been an underlying (and perhaps unwritten) Order of the Day for the Escort.

And today, as a member of the Honor Guard of the local VVA Chapter, I spend time providing some measure of Honors to fallen veterans of WWII, Korean, and Viet Nam. In every instance, a member of our Color Guard consults with the family (usually through the Funeral Director) to determine what Honors rendered will be of greatest comfort to the family. And those wishes expressed by the family are carried out to the letter, and in a proper Military manner.

USMC, RVN '66 - '68

And I Quote...

"A fondness for power is implanted, in most men, and it is natural to abuse it, when acquired." --Alexander Hamilton

On March 10, 2009, my husband, John, a 10 year Marine Veteran, was buried at the Crownsville Veterans Cemetery in Crownsville, Maryland. I had never been to a Veteran's funeral before, though John and I had been married for 36 years.

When we pulled up behind the hearse in front of the chapel, I saw three Marines, standing at attention and saluting John's coffin. I guess what I did was not considered proper but I went up to those Marines and told them a little about John's life as a Marine. I thanked them from the bottom of my heart for what they were doing. This is the kind of funeral John would have wanted.

Once inside the chapel two Marines stood at attention, one at the head and one at the foot of the flag draped coffin. The service was short, only 15 minutes long. When the minister finished speaking, the Marines folded the flag and one came and knelt down on one knee before me and presented me with the flag from a grateful nation.

My John was so proud of his Marine Corps service and I was always so proud of him. I will remember that scene for the rest of my life and those wonderful Marines who paid him their last respects. Marines truly are brothers whether they be young or old and none of them will ever be forgotten. May God bless you all!

From a grateful Marine wife

I would like to say Semper Fi to WM's Sgt Marilyn Gerhardt (Sgt Grit News, 12Mar09), & LCPL Jane Curtis (American Courage 19Mar09). I am also very proud to be a WM. I would also like to invite any other WM's to join the Women Marine Association in their areas.

I am a member of the Iowa-1, Wild Rose Chapter. We have about 10 or so active members from the state who come to the meetings. We would like to encourage more to WM's participate. My Dad was a WWII & Korea Marine and I have been married to "my" Marine for 31yrs.

Many Thanks to all servicemen & women who have served & are serving now.
Semper Fi, Terri (Sides) Calhoon, CPL 1973-1977

I'm proud to say that my husband and I both served in the Corps. It is something that truly changes your life. It is part of your heart forever.

I was reading the stories and found myself crying at almost every one. To all men and woman who have served past and present you are thought of in my heart, and I pray every night that every one of our men and woman come home safely. SEMPER FI- Remember NEVER FORGET those who have fought and served for this country and laid there lives down for us to be free!


And I Quote...

"In framing a government which is to be administered by men over men, the great difficulty lies in this: you must first enable the government to control the governed; and in the next place oblige it to control itself." -- James Madison

I read the last two news letters. In response to "Taking Chance" and to the New England Marine Mom.

The movie Taking Chance hit home for me. I had a cousin who was killed over in Iraq back in November of 2005. As I watched Taking Chance. I started wondering how it was for my cousin. Then I realized it was just the same. He was treated with Respect, Honor, and with Great Care. I am not a Marine. But I have Uncles, Cousins, A Grandfather, and Friends that are. My heart goes out to all.

To the New England Marine Mom as well as all the other Families of Marines as well as other Military Personnel My Heart Goes out to you all. You as well as your Families are in My Prayers. I pray that your family members serving in the Marines or any other branch of the Military come home safe and sound.

Semper Fi,
Shannon Irwin
USMC/Military Supporter

When I started reading your story I got a knot in my stomach. I too have a son deployed in Iraq (second tour). I have fears of arriving home and finding a Marine car in my drive. I believe I would have had a good cry of relief also. Sometimes I don't think people understand the fears a Marine Mom has. As I have read on t-shirts and bumper stickers, "The hardest job in the Corps...a Marine Mom." I thoroughly believe that. Marine Mom - Toughest Job in the Corps

God Bless all of our military and keep them safe. And God be with you and your family.

C. Lindsey
Proud Marine Mom

K I A Scholarships is holding a National Charity Golf Tournament to benefit the children of a parent that was killed-in-action with relief now and when the time comes for a college education.

The event will be held at Tour 18 Dallas Golf Course on October 19, 2009 in Flower Mound, Texas. Two highlights will be the offering of a One Million Dollar prize on either holes 5 or 17. That's two chances. There will be other prizes as well.

The cost of playing in the tournament is $200. The event will run for four consecutive days. A great need at this time is the names of anyone whose spouse was killed-in-action that has children.

Please make your donations if you can not play to the address below.

Tour 18's web site:

Send donations to:

K I A Scholarships Trust
c/o Bob Shicotte (ex-Marine)
760 Lark Street
Lantana, Texas 76226

And I Quote...

"Never trouble another for what you can do yourself." -- Thomas Jefferson

Reading the letters from WM's reminded me of a recent discussion I had at work. I work at the VA in Denver. Not only are all the patients, but most of the staff are Vets. Interservice rivalry is alive and well. I was having a discussion with a nurse who was in the Air Force, comparing physical and weapons training. He was bragging how since he was in a tactical unit he had to qualify annually by running a mile (no time limit). He even fam fired an M-16 once! He dismissed what I told him we did as Marines citing, "You guys are into pain." I did get the last word in letting him know that all WM's had to run a mile and a half, do the bar hang, and sit-ups in a qualifying time, AND qualify with the rifle twice a year.

Keith Grisham Cpl. 3534 '82-'86

I will never ever ever get tired of hearing about it. My son graduated from 2nd Battalion, Golf CO, Plt 2073 on September 7, 2008. He got "bitten" by a whole lot more that sand fleas, I promise you. You don't say whether or not you were a Marine, so you must not be as proud of your service as most of the folks who make posts to this newsletter. Maybe you were one of those Hollywood Marines and didn't have to go through the heat and humidity of Paradise Island from June to September. Take a trip down there sometime and see what it is all about. You will be shocked at what it takes to be a Southerner in the heat of Summer, much less a Recruit who is giving The Corps his all for his country. Aint Nothin Meaner Than a Marine Cept His Mama

My son was a good Marine who got lots of sand flea bites and fire ant bites and lots and lots of DI love, just like every other Recruit who had the honor of going through Basic at Parris Island. He gave his life for the Corps, so think about what you post before you hit that button. You might tick off one Very PROUD MARINE MOM, and the only thing meaner than a Marine is his Mama.

Semper Fi Forever
Diane P. Gordon
VP Gold Star Marine Mom of LCpl Cameron Clark VPM of Kayleigh

Hi Sgt Grit; I was a Corpsman with B 1/7 1st Mar Div. and was also there for this "exciting" show of ground fireworks. My cousin, also a Marine, was with me at 1st Medical Bat. on the other side of Freedom Hill. He was attached to a unit on Marble Mtn. I have a 2" hunch of metal from a bomb in my display case, here at home, that came through the roof of my hooch at the Med Hospital. I came home with two purple hearts and he never got scratched; but he died working on the Alaskan pipeline after the military.
God Bless our country and our military guys and gals.
HM2 Allen Rienhardt, Syracuse, NY

And I Quote...

"The ordaining of laws in favor of one part of the nation, to the prejudice and oppression of another, is certainly the most erroneous and mistaken policy. An equal dispensation of protection, rights, privileges, and advantages, is what every part is entitled to, and ought to enjoy." -- Benjamin Franklin

A Marine friend, Sgt. Shelaine Coleman, suggested this part of a poem for my reunion flyer. It is very appropriate and applies to all of us who made the Marine choice.

".I shall be telling this with a sigh,

somewhere ages and ages hence:

Two roads diverged in a wood, and I ---

took the one less traveled by,

And that has made all the difference."

Robert Frost

Sgt Nat Holmes

Dear Sgt Grit,

I am a proud wife {11 years now whooooo} of an active duty Marine.

I just wanted to say thanks for the news letters they are amazing! Some make me cry and others make me chuckle, but are all wonderful to read. Keep them coming.

I would also like to thank all that have served past and present. My family and I are so proud to be part of the Corps. I would also like to say Thank You to the spouses who have stuck by there Marines and help them make it through there time and service. May God bless yall and keep up the good work Marines.

God Bless &
Semper Fi Marines
Marlene Duran {proud wife}

And I Quote...

"Without wishing to damp the ardor of curiosity or influence the freedom of inquiry, I will hazard a prediction that, after the most industrious and impartial researchers, the longest liver of you all will find no principles, institutions or systems of education more fit in general to be transmitted to your posterity than those you have received from your ancestors." -- John Adams

Good evening Grunts,

A few months ago I wrote Sgt Grit about my husband, CPL Alvin O. Ritter, USMC 1966-1972, concerning his being diagnosed with Parkinson's.

First, and foremost I want to thank every Marine brother who called us, even though Al didn't want to talk to you, the calls did have an effect, a positive one. Within 3 weeks he wanted me to go to the home supply store and buy some plywood; something he hasn't wanted me to do in almost a year.

He then went out to his shed where he had stored his electric tools and supplies (tools he hadn't touch in months). When he hadn't come in for lunch and his PM meds I went out to find out what was happening.

He had taken all his tools out of the shed and was cleaning, oiling them and doing an inventory on his supplies. When he looked up from his chore he wanted to know what the plywood had cost, I told him I hadn't bought it yet.

His response? "Great I'm going to need some 1in self tapping wood and sheet screws, about 12 block for the back porch and......" He then proceeded to tell me he needed about 8-9 other things along with the wood. I was in shock!

He hasn't stopped since! He spends most of his day in "his office" (aka the work shed) tinkering, re-organizing, and literally enjoying himself. I even got him to go back to the Neurologist for a follow up appointment. The doc has re-evaluated his meds and changed the prescription so that his constant tremors are almost a thing of the past, unless he is too tired or is sick.

Thanks guys.

Without knowing us realizing what effect it would have, and without any of you talking to him, he has started to come out of his depression and is working with his hands again, building bookcases and small desks.

GOD Bless all of you and Thank You for the concern you showed.

SEMPER FI! and a large hug from me to everyone of you ....

Evelynne M. Ritter
Guthrie, OK

The occasional little notes I have sent out regarding veterans of military service have covered a wide range of service, but I have too often neglected those who served at home. This morning I received the news that Lucille Hesler has passed away, and I'd like to take a moment to honor her life and service.

When Glen Hesler left the States to fly his P-51 Mustang in China as a member of the Flying Tigers, he left his wife Lucille to wait for his return. She did more than wait of course--she too served her country in a civilian capacity, but she also waited. Lt. Hesler's plane was named Lucille, too, but that plane is not hanging in a museum today because it was shot down by the Japanese. For 30 days the young pilot survived on the ground in enemy territory. Lucille did not know what was going on, but she did know that the regular flow of letters had stopped. When she was finally notified that her husband was MIA (missing in action), he was already in a Florida hospital. Mrs. Hesler waited during the Korean War and Vietnam, too.

In fact, she waited every time her husband slipped into a cockpit. Many pilots have died during peacetime, too. But she waited and she served and she welcomed him home again each time.

When I met Lucille she was 89 years old and living in a retirement home with Colonel Hesler. She enjoyed discussing her time as the wife of a pilot, but she also enjoyed telling me about her brother and other family members who, like herself, were devoted to education. She rightly placed these educators on an equal plain for hero-worship as her husband.

As a young 70-year old Lucille decided to try her hand at flying. Her teacher was her husband, an aviator of impeccable skill and remarkable experience. As in most cases where a gifted expert is imparting knowledge to a novice, his patience was perhaps not as deep as it could have been.

Following one lesson in which she felt especially chastened for her ineptitude, she handed the Colonel a needle and thread and a piece of clothing in need of repair, saying in effect, "fix that Mr. Know-it-all!" He got the message and tempered his attitude thereafter, and she indeed learned to pilot an aircraft--at seventy.

Lucille Hesler celebrated her 90th birthday last December. She was remarkably bright at that time and still keeping a watchful eye on her husband, who was battling Alzheimer's. Her mind was bright, but her body was ravaged by time, and she suffered terrible physical pain. Her mind finally slipped along with her body in her final days, but now her suffering is relieved, and we are left with the sadness of her departure but also filled with the joyful knowledge that she is Risen.

Lucille leaves a legacy that will live far beyond any mortal thoughts and deeds.

These words are a meager attempt to say thank you for your wonderful life, Lucille.


And I Quote...

"I believe the best social program is a job." -- Pres. Ronald Reagan

I was at Da Nang air base with the 37th Air Rescue and Recovery Squadron (ARRS) in '72. While our mission with the HH-53 Jolly Green Giants was long range combat rescue, we occasionally had special missions requested by other units and OK'd by 7th Air Force.

As a very young 2Lt, I was a co-pilot/navigator that day in March flying to some coordinates to pick up some Marines (I would think RECONs) west of Quang Tri. It was an uneventful pick up (no fire fight), and when we returned to Da Nang and shut down the beast the Marines were still milling around the Ops building waiting on their ride.

I stopped to talk to one who was also a Lt. (1Lt). I commented that the men are all clean shaven and look pretty clean after being in the boonies for a few days. The Lt. answered rather curtly that Marines will shave every day and clean their uniforms no matter what the circumstances.

I could tell he did not have much respect for this young Air Force weenie wearing the "green bag" flight suit, but I sure had respect for him and his Marines. Later in my career working in a Joint Forces organization, I have had the fortunate experience to work with Marines. They were always squared away and had that famous Marine "military bearing". I have always respected Marines and glad I had great experiences working with them. I read "Sgt Grit" cover to cover. I told my cousin (former Marine-PI) about the publication and he always talks about it when we are in contact.

"Cork", Major Retired USAF


There is only one in possession of the ability to save souls. Only he can know how many lives have been saved by the United States Marine Corps.

Freedom, indeed, is not free. No one knows this better than he who possesses the ability to free souls from eternal bondage. This knowledge lives in the spirit of the United States Marine. It lives, washed in the blood of fallen heroes. It lives, purified in the tears of brother who has buried brother.

It lives in the heart of every Mother who ever lost a son; only to thank God that she gained a Marine.

Gender matters not, nor age, nor rank, nor medals. Every Marine shares the physical pain of the combat veteran. Every Marine knows the psychological challenge inherent with the privilege. No Marine wants his or her mother to wail with grief.

"The pain is mine to bear, Mother", they say. "And I will take this risk because the Corps is worth it. Would to God I am worthy of the Corps."

Blain McMurray served in the Marine Corps in World War Two. He was wounded on Iwo Jima in 1945. He is my father's first cousin, though I grew up calling him Uncle Blain. Though he rejects and seems to resent the term, he remains, to this day, a hero to me.

Todd Ramer served in the United States Marine Corps during the Korean War. He was separated from his company in the heat of combat. Eventually, he regained sight of his brothers, only to witness them being cut down by enemy machine gun fire.

Todd was my mother's first cousin. He joined the Marine Corps because he hated school, particularly math. His father told him, if he could not cope with school, to get used to being a farmer.

Todd Ramer returned from Korea and completed his education. He eventually became a college professor, where he taught mathematics.

My best friend served in the United States Marine Corps for seven years. I can safely say that, notoriety and sacrifice notwithstanding, no one ever wore the uniform with more pride.

Though he no longer wears Marine Corps green, though he probably fails to recognize this truth, he continues to exemplify the spirit of the Corps.

Terry Elgin, while a flawed human being- a real man- demonstrates courage, persistence, sacrifice, faith, and loyalty on a regular basis.

To these great men I dedicate this story. I dedicate it to every man and every woman who has ever been reborn to a higher calling. To the Marines and their families I say thank you. To God I say thank you for the United States Marine Corps.

"Never think that God does not work through the Corps."
Semper Fidelis.

And I Quote...

Fortune favors the brave. -- Virgil (70 BC - 19 BC), Aeneid

No we are no longer called BAMS, but it is called now Beautiful American MARINE, Woman Marine and now we are called Marines. I served in the USMC from 18 Jan 1964 to 15 Sept 1965 due to seizure I had a honorable and medical discharge. Took Basic at Parris Island and from there transferred to Camp Pendleton. I was going to make it a career, but have never regretted serving and still I call myself a Marine.
Linda (Austin) Sattefield
Pfc. 64-65 USMC

Sgt Clark! COME to ATTENTION! I would like to inform you that, in the '70's my sister was a Lieutenant in the USMC! She was NEVER a BAM! SHE is a MARINE (no longer on active duty)! AND DON'T YOU ever FORGET THAT! ALL Marines (men AND women) are MARINES! Semper Fi to ALL Marines everywhere! Thank you ALL for your service!

A Grateful American,
Christine Leeds Armstrong, RN
wife of Sgt James Armstrong, USMC-Force Recon (RVN '69-'70)
'69-'73, now proudly serving as Commander, United States Navy-Reserve, Nurse Corps...TAKING CARE of his BELOVED MARINES...'90-and into the future!

Sgt. Grit,

I wanted to take a brief moment to remember one of our fallen. As many of you may have heard, there were 4 brave police officers mercilessly slain by a ruthless slug, in Oakland, California recently. It goes without saying that our hearts go out to all 4 men, along with our utmost respect for their service to our communities. One of the slain officers, Erv Romans, was not only a Sgt. with the Oakland Police Department SWAT Team, but was also a Sergeant in the U.S. Marine Corps when I knew him in the late '80's.

Sgt. Romans and I were both Drill Instructors aboard MCRD San Diego, 2nd Battalion, H Company. We trained several platoons in the same series for over a year. And, without fail, every PT session, rifle range, pugil stick match, or drill competition was always a very motivational, and highly competitive outing with Romans around. Sgt. Romans brought a sense of professionalism and 'esprit de corps' to work with him every day. This attitude transcended Sgt. Romans' recruits, and for this, I'm sure his recruits are thankful. Sgt. Romans knew what it meant to be a Marine... the dedication, commitment, and importance. He never lost sight of the mission.

It is with great pain that I write this, and my prayers go out to his family. The Marine Corps has lost one of the very best...he may be gone, but will never be forgotten.

Semper Fidelis and rest in peace Sgt. Romans, and please know that although your time on this earth was short, you truly made a difference.

John Couturier, Sgt.
USMC 1983-90
Drill Instructor, 2nd Bn., H Company 1988-90

And I Quote...

"Keep your fears to yourself, but share your courage with others." -- Robert Louis Stevenson (1850 - 1894)

I Love My Marine Customizable T-shirt
I Love My Marine Customizable T-shirt

Personalized Marine Mirror
Personalized Marine Mirror

God Bless America!
Semper Fi
Sgt Grit