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AmericanCourage #248     17 MAR 2011
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Thanks to the Mom (top of the newsletter) that continues to pray for our Marines. I have done the same since 911 and I fast once a week. My only child, Staff Sgt. Joe Fankhauser, is a Marine. He did 4 tours of duty in Iraq and will hopefully return soon from Afghanistan. God bless all our troops!

Mary in Texas

In This Issue

I have nothing I think is thoughtful or profound so I won't bore you with a bunch of words to fill space.

Here we go: a little Grenada dust-up, shopping checkout surprise, more on Duke, a suggestion I need to a pair of "bell- bottom trousers", grunt identifiers, Idol Dress Blues, and sibling competition sadly comes to and end. Ficus, Fidelis, fides, fio etc... As usual many outstanding pictures with the stories. And don't forget to sneak over and take a peek at Sgt Grit Facebook and blog.

Fair winds and following seas.
Sgt Grit

Sgt. Grit,
I got the greatest gift from my oldest Grandson, Nathan Gadrim. His father works on metal fabrication and worked up a Marine Corps Name Plate with my rank title and chevron along with the colors.

My Marine Buddies are somewhat green with envy. I have it in my office on display.

MSgt. Dick Bowers, USMC ( Ret'd.)

In 1998, my lady friend and I also went on a Caribbean cruise, on which Grenada was a port of call. Among the things we did while in port was take a cab ride from St. George's up the mountain side to (if I remember correctly) what was the site where the Marines rescued the college students. I made some flippant, smart-a---d remark about the Grenada conflict not being a real war and how it was just a little dust-up.

That cab driver immediately got in my face. "We love the United States for what they did for us. We thank God for the Marines that came to save us." I found myself embarrassed for my off handed remarks and apologizing at about 90 words a minute. As we rode back down the mountain on our return to St. George's, I got my head out of my --- and started noticing all the American flags. In spite of feeling small because of my previous comments, I felt proud to be an American. So if you're ever in Grenada, watch your mouth. Down there, they love America and they love Marines.

Forged on the anvil of discipline.
The Few. The Proud.
Jerry D.

Attached is a picture of my son and I on the day he deployed to Afghanistan-Jan 14, 2011 2/8, Golf Co, 1st plt

Cecilia Jones, Proud Mother of an U.S. Marine Grunt, 0311, 2/8

He Sgt Grit This is why I joined the Marine Corps

My Father James C Jones was one of the first Monfort Point Marines, I was born in Newport R I on the Naval base where my father was station as Sgt of the Guard at the time. My older brother Gary C Jones enlisted in the Marines in 1968 and retired as a light Col.

I, Gregory K Jones, enlisted in 1970 did four years that I would not trade for anything in the world (when I was a kid, everybody played army, I PLAYED MARINE). I knew I was going to be a Marine the moment I learned to talk. I am now a retired cop and my personalized license plate in DPDUSMC. I owe being a police officer to the USMC. Marine at Birth!

I fly my Marine colors with the American flag at my home every day.

"Semper Fi"

"You can tell more about a person by what he says about others...than you can by what others say about him"
--Author Unknown

Two pictures of my baby boy (deployed in the sandbox right now)

First one is self explanatory....My bad-azs Marine

Second one is him with his nieces - he had just come from an honors funeral (did quite a few of those before he left)


Cindy M O M

Yo Grit,

When I'm having a "bad day," I think of Charlie Smouse. On his 9th Birthday, Charlie suffered a massive (read MASSIVE) stroke. Charlie has recovered to the point where he can talk, walk & has very limited use of his left arm & left hand.

I wrote your staff an email request for a special order T shirt & Sweatshirt for Charlie. An email and phone call later, Kristi, your Marketing Project Coordinator / Customer Service Manager stated, & I quote: "Hello Hugh. We certainly can do this. Forward me your info. It was a pleasure getting you squared away, have an outstanding Marine Corps day! Semper Fidelis"

I've attached a photo of Charlie wearing the Sweatshirt Kristi & I designed. What better way to work oneself through adversity than to "Improvise Adapt Overcome."

From Charlie, his parents, brother and sister, and especially from me, thank you Kristi and thank you Sgt. Grit.
-Cpl H. J. Roche

Sgt. Grit, I'm sending along a photo of our unit, Semper Fi #1. We render military honors at Riverside National Cemetery 2 times a month here in Southern California. We have about 60 active members. We have 2 Marines who served at the Frozen Chosin, Marines who served in Vietnam, Gulf War, Iraq, and the cold war. We consider it an honor to be able to wear the uniform again, and to provide military honors to the veterans who are being interned at Riverside National Cemetery. We bleed Marine green. Our website is and are always looking for new recruits to join us.

Steve Fisher
Former SGT. of Marines
1ST Recon Nam 68-69

Plt 389, Show this to Carl Mott and Sgt Grit.
Enjoy S/F Roger Fleming

Thought you might like these of my grandson Nathaniel 2 yrs. old, mother of 3 Marines, Danielle Duquette

Oldtime Marine

I enlisted in 1945 and graduated from boot camp then to Camp Pendleton for advanced training, which was cut short because the Second Marine div. had just finished Tarawa and set up Camp Tarawa out of Hilo, Hawaii.

I shipped to Pearl Harbor to the 5th Amphibious Courps Replacement Btn. Then to Camp Tarawa, Fox Btry, 2nd Btn, Tenth Marines. I participated in the action on Saipan, Tinian / Okinawa and Eheya Shima. Then was floating reserve at Iwo Jima.

When the war ended I then went to Nagasaki Japan and Shimabaro for Occupation. I boarded ship at Sassabo Japan Dec 7 1945 to return to the U.S.A.

We disembarked from the ship at San Diego Christmas Eve morning, then to Camp Pendleton, thence to Marine Barracks at the Mare Island Naval Base near San Francisco for discharge January of 1946.

I am now 87 years old and still get tears in my eyes when I hear the Marine's Hymn and think of my departed Commrades.

Robert C. Mathews Sr.

Our son is a Marine, serving his second tour in Afghanistan right now. He's a combat engineer. We could not be more proud of him. Recently, my wife and daughter were shopping for items to send to him. The lady in the checkout line in front of them overheard their conversation and offered to pay for everything. She didn't care how much it cost, she wanted to pay for it all. She said she didn't personally know anyone serving in Afghanistan, and she just wanted to do something.

My wife only got her first name, which was Linda. This happened at the Wal-Mart in Sterling, VA.

Sgt Grit
Thank you so much for giving to my husband's Marines. They were so excited to see and chose an item from your contribution. I hope you enjoy the photos. As you can see these Marines have no problems posing for photos. They're hams...enjoy!

Tina Gilmore

Hey, Grit,

Been awhile since I wrote & a few things stand out. I graduated from Parris Island in Aug 1960. There were only two of us who were promoted to PFC per Platoon. One was the "Honor" Recruit, & I was Series "High Rifle." There was no ceremony as such, but I got to wear a PFC chevron on my sleeve for Graduation - what could be better than that?

Just like LaRosa, I was told a month before high school graduation that I was 18 and had a month to find someplace to go. When I joined The Corps my father laughed at me, sayi8ng "They'll ship you home in a box." Didn't happen. What DID happen was a new way of life where I learned Honor, Duty & Respect. Which brings me to my last point:

Stolen Valor. I learned to respect the uniform, what it represents, and how to properly wear it. Specifically that it be worn ONLY by Marines who have earned the right to wear it. I had a real problem with the bearded child who was doing the Tinker Belle dance around the stage wearing a Dress Blue Blouse complete with buttons on an "Idol" show last night. He sure as h*** wasn't MY idol. After reading about the 18 Marines who didn't come home in this week's letter, it makes his disrespect that much worse. I'm very surprised that he was allowed to get away with wearing it at all, much less on national television.

If we don't stand up for our History and Traditions they will be stolen by the disrespectful and the unqualified.

Semper Fi,
P Formaz 1867936

And I Quote...

"I am convinced there is no smarter, handier or more adaptable body of troops in the world."
--Winston Churchill writing about US Marines, 1917

Kristy and the entire Sgt. Grit Family :

First let me apologize for it taking so long to get back with the photos, my laptop crashed and I've been rebuilding files and so on. Please forgive me but I had to start from scratch again.

So as you'll see in the photos it was a GREAT DAY ! We started out the day with a poker run, and about the time they got back from the poker run the cruise-in was going on .Our local community turned out in force to be on hand to meet and greet the troops as they arrived on the bus. The men had a blast, as you can see from the smiles on their faces. Each and every Marine there that evening received something from the Sgt. Grit family. Your kind and wonderful donations of hats, T-shirts, flags, where awesome and helped out so much. We were able to raise funds for the Semper-Fi Fund, which helps all the branches of service from 09/11 thru current, with all wounded vets, coming home and their families.

Now we are going to try to make this into a semi-annual event, to get the men out twice a year , along with raising money for the Semper-Fi Fund and Toys' for Tots' as well. And we'd like to ask the Grit Family if you'd like to be a part of this ongoing effort to help our Wounded American Heroes.

Never ever let it be said that "The Marines Don't Take of Their Own! " We DO! And we do it better than anyone else. Semper-Fi!

Again Thank you for all of your help and support...

Thank You
GySgt. Robert C. Rogers _ U.S.M.C.- Ret.
Force Recon

Sorry about this Grit, but I thought the pizzing match about John Wayne was over.

I read somewhere that Duke never served because:

1. He, along with tens of thousands of others, was married and sole support of his family. (He had yet to make his first million dollar pay check).
2. He, along with tens of thousands of others, had more than three dependents.
3. He, along with tens of thousands of others, was within months of hitting the age limit for the draft. Many were taken, many others were not. Duke was not.
4. He, unlike the other tens of thousands, was in a position to have a greater impact on the war as an actor than as a G.I. (that is the politically correct designation for the time period).
5. Sports injuries.

He sure as h-ll didn't drop ink on cigarettes in and attempt to make his x-rays show spots on his lungs, or run off to some other country like so many of our "stars" of today.

In his position and with his connections, I wouldn't be surprised if at sometime in the future there is found and released some private or secret documentation showing that FDR had a hand in keeping Duke in Hollywood and on the USO tour.

Those who were raised during the counter-culture years can argue all they want. Let them have at it. Those of us who were raised with respect know the truth.


Sgt Grit:

In defense of John Wayne and the movie "The Green Berets", the sun does set in the west in parts of Viet Nam. The far southwest portion of Viet Nam faces the Gulf of Thailand and the sun does indeed, set in the west. I recall the setting sun scene at the end of the movie but don't remember a reference to the South China Sea.

Mark Smith
Cpl. 2/5 Viet Nam 67'
CWO5 US Army Retired

Hi Sgt Grit,
Just wanted to reply to Groucho who sent the picture to you from December, 1968. My son was with Alpha Co 1/3. He was stationed in K-Bay, HI and served with them in Iraq in 04-05. Just wanted to say Semper Fi and hello to one of my son's brothers-in-arms from a different time. Let him know the 1/3 is still on the job and proud!

Marine Mom of
LCpl Ryan Smith

And I Quote...

"In 150 years they have never been beaten. They will hold."
--Col. Preston Brown, US Army speaking of the Marines replacing routed French units in a desperate last-ditch effort to stop the German advance on Paris during WWI, June 1918. The Marines stopped the Germans

In your latest Sgt Grit News [2-24-11], a former 0351 anti-tank assaultman inquired about a saying on your bumper sticker pertaining to 0351-"Death on a Wire" and what it meant. Maybe I can shed some light on it to help him out.

The wire refers to the wire fed out of a TOW missile launcher to assist the gunner in optically guiding it on target to extreme long ranges. I think it was in the mid- late 70's that the Corps implemented the TOW missile as the main weapon for the 0351 MOS.

In '70 I was trained as an 0351, and our MOS covered the 106mm Recoilless Rifle, the 3.5" Rocket Launcher [bazooka], the Flame Thrower, and Demolitions. In Nam though, I was given an M-16 and a Prc-25 radio and sent to a CAG unit - CAP 2-4-6. After Nam I went to GITMO with 2/8 and was in a 106 RR platoon at Camp Bulkeley. The cliffs approx 1/2 mile from Bulkeley is where we used to fire our 106's out into the ocean. That area is where they recently built the high security prison Camp Delta. Hope this helps him out.

Semper Fi Sgt Grit- Keep up the good work !
Ed Thueme Cpl 70-72

As one former Marine to another, I take offenses to the term "Semper Fi". In my research there is no Latin word referencing the word "Fi" and in my defense I offer the attached document outlining the Latin words both before and after the word "Fidelis". Some are not so me as a former Marine I would choose to be associated with. Has our society become so lazy we cannot even pronounce two additional syllables to express what we feel? Toward this end I implore you to discontinue your products that state "Semper Fi". Only my opinion however, I feel it is a disservice to all our fellow Marines. Have a great day! Semper Fidelis!

Sgt. Keith Elliston

ficus : fig tree.
fidelis : faithful, loyal, true
fidelitas : fidelity, loyalty, homage.
fidens : confident, without fear, courageous.
fides : promise, assurance, word of honor, engagement.
fides : trust, confidence, reliance, belief, faith.
fiducia : confidence, trust, assurance.
fimus : dung, dirt, filth, manure.
fines finium : boundaries, limits, / territory.
fingo-finxi-fictum : to touch, conceive, contrive finis : end, limit, boundary, purpose.
finitimus finitumus : neighboring, adjacent, related to, similar.
fio, fieri, factus : be made, be done, become.

'Feel compelled to chime in on this one, Sgt. Grit. Don't confuse our employing the naval words "hatch," "bulkhead," or "by your leave" in the same manner as "Fair wind and following seas" would be used for "Semper Fi." "Fair winds and following seas" is a phrase used when you're addressing (spoken or written) a person associated with the Navy (including their family). The recipient determines the salutation to be used. You use that with me, or most Marines, our first thought is- "I'm NOT a squid, I'm a Marine." So if someone has called you out on this, I'm afraid the line will start to form behind me, too.

If you resort to a "spin" on this one, Grit, well maybe I'll ask GySgt Lee Ermey to send you some bell-bottomed trousers! We may be part of the Naval family tree, but we have our own identity and our own family. In a bar fight, we'll back each other- and even a squid (have to take care of the step-child) if some other branch is involved. Let your salute (your salutation) to another Marine be "Semper Fi", or "Semper Fidelis" and you'll get an "OoRah" in response. Anything else ...and we're gonna think... "how sweet." LOL...

Jim Meyers
RVN 2/5
Always a Marine

And I Quote...

"In a revolution, as in a novel, the most difficult part to invent is the end.
--Alexis de Tocqueville

Yo Grit,

It's a small world out there. I'm an Aviation Safety Inspector with the Federal Aviation Administration. I was a Motor Transport mechanic in the Corps & upon my separation in 1969, I went to Northrop Institute of Technology to obtain my Aviation Airframe & Powerplant Certificate.

A few months ago I was introduced to "Ron" a fellow aircraft mechanic. Over the months Ron & I talked about our fraternity- not of being aircraft mechanics, but of our time in the Corps. One conversation led to another & he told me his USMC Service Number was 2196901. I Didn't believe what I heard. My Service Number was 2196912. We weren't in the same Boot Camp Platoon at MCRD San Diego. But I betcha that somewhere in ITR @ Camp Pendleton we were A--wholes to Bellybuttons. We email each other from time to time. He's named me "12." I call him "01."

-Cpl H. J. Roche

First and foremost, this low-life civilian offers heartfelt congratulations to Meghan Layman and her father! Semper Fi, Marines !

I was sorry to read about the despicable imposter and I sincerely hope this person is quickly exposed as the most disgusting fake there is.

I purchased short and long sleeved T-shirts from Sgt Grit; they depict Chesty Puller, a man for whom I have immense respect. Several heated comments about 'posers' soon appeared on the Sgt Grit site and I reluctantly put the shirts away. It was never my intent to claim to be a Marine; I wanted to honor the man and his Corps. I even made comment about my concern as to being labeled a 'poser' in a Sgt Grit American Courage issue. A Marine suggested I go ahead and wear the shirt(s) and if/when I was confronted, simply state I was never a Marine but I wanted to honor the man and his beloved Corps. Which was, and remains, true. Alas, I have no idea where I put them, somewhere they would 'be safe' no doubt.

I have considered pins for each of the five service divisions and have decided against it. The "I wasn't there but I still care" patches on my Patriot Guard Riders vests, situated immediately below and in an in-your-face position location, the U.S. Flag.

Thank you, Marines, Semper Fi.

Fair Winds And Following Seas. May God love and protect you.


To the Dedicated Marine Mom who has a son serving with 3/9 in Afghanistan. Thanks Mom for your son and his service. I served with 3/9 in 1961 and 1962.

Frank Briceno
USMC 1960-1964

Your son will be in my prayers! I hope him and the rest of his fellow warriors get some well needed hygiene time! I'm sure his digital utilities are starched from sweat by now, like an Old Corps Marine! Keep us posted please!

Rah, S/F!

LCpl Huck Jr, Gerald P. 1at Plt. Charlie Company, 1/9-The Walking Dead.

I will keep him in my prayers and thoughts I was in 2/2 golf co. Was a warlord. 0331. I miss it badly. Got out 4 years ago ended up with 80% from the. Va and two purple hearts. Semper Fi!

To Mom,

I HAD to WRITE! Your son will survive without a shower. "67-68" "I" 3/9 0311, the only shower I got was on R & R!

be well
Semper Fi

Sir: In your letters section, a short note from "a dedicated Marine mom" (1st letter, I believe) she mentions her son in Afghanistan who has not had a shower (only hygiene wipes) since his deployment began in December 2010. I would like to help this Marine and his comrades; for about $50, I can purchase a portable hanging shower and ship shower, towels, body wash, deodorant and dental hygiene products, in addition to another parcel of food, snacks, jerky, writing material, etc., as I do for other Warriors of all services through Any, which is where I get most of my information. All first-time parcels include a 3x5 American flag.

If you or someone can provide a name (rank not necessary) and an APO/FPO address, I can have a go at helping these fine Americans!

Sincerely, and Faithfully Yours
J.Steve Bogie, Vietnam veteran
USAF (SAC), 1966-1972
maddog5340 @ cox .net (no spaces)

God Bless Your Son and All the Rest!
Captain, USMC
S-3/XO, 3RD Force Recon Co
Viet Nam-'67, '68, '69

your son is now in our prayer list each day. When you talk to him next, please tell him how proud we all are and thank him for his service to our country. This from just an old boot.

And I Quote...

"We must take human nature as we find it, perfection falls not to the share of mortals."
--George Washington

Many of our young Marines will face an injustice; being subjected to the unfairness of the law USFSPA, which allows states to treat retainer pay (misnamed retirement pay) as property to be divided forever with a former spouse. Forever means forever remarriage does not end the injustice. Some states virtually force retirement upon the service member as the courts force payment upon reaching eligibility even though retirement wasn't in the plans at the time. Many courts are also trying to force division of disability pay. For more info check out the website. Unfortunately, most Marines will not be made aware of this law until standing before the judge.
Semper Fi,
Mike Collins
Capt USMC ret.

Dear Sgt Grit

I joined the Marine Corps in 1987. I served 4 years. 2 on barracks duty and 2 with 3/6 Lima Co. 0341. I recently lost my father James Dayton Dec 25 2010 USN 1967-1969. I was not a perfect child but the moment I told him that the Marine recruiter was coming to the house one night he said ok. The knock was at the door, my father answered, introductions were made and my father looked SSgt Conrad stright in the face and said he is your blanking problem now. The moral of the story is fathers do know best. My father was always so proud to tell anyone that his son was a Marine. Even though he knew he was the sister co.

Semper Fi
Fair Winds and Following Seas

Darren Dayton LCPL
Desert Shield/Storm

Sgt. Grit USMC

I am very proud to announce that my Grandson, Recruit Pvt. Taylor James Chapman, was sworn into the United States Marine Corps today, 10 March, 2011 at 1600 in Louisville Kentucky.

The Corps is getting another fine young man.

He will be following his grandfather a mere 49 years after his enlistment in our beloved Corps.

Reporting, September 2011.

His first assigned duty station, Recruit Training Parris Island, South Carolina.

He will earn the Title of United States Marine in December 2011.

Please say a prayer for him and for all of our fine young men and women serving today and in the future in all of our military services.

Semper Fi
SSgt Jim Barr USMC
Very proud Grandfather

I guess a great many of those folks served in some lousy outfits or their C.O.'s never heard of "Chesty Puller" or "Al Gray" when it came to leadership, or maybe I was lucky!

Every promotion I ever had was done in formation by the C.O. and 1St Sgt. in formation attended by as many personnel as possible. PFC through Sgt in Nam; Cpl and Sgt were presented by Regimental C.O. and SgtMaj.

All of my SNCO warrants ( S/Sgt - MSgt ) were done in formation. My CWO warrant was done by CG Marine Corps Base, with unit C.O. and SgtMaj and unit in attendance. CWO2 thru CWO3 were all in formation and done by unit C.O.

My Captain's appointment was done by C.G. 4thMAR Div and C.G. 2nd FSSG and both of them flew to Omaha, Neb. to put them on. In all of these my family and friends were in attendance except combat zones. I was promoted on the drill field with two recruit companies in attendance and the C.O. gave me a 2 hour lunch break with my wife and family and said that was all the time off we could afford at the time.

ALL promotions were done with traditional wetting down / pinning on / and the ever loving repining of the NCO stripe. As a platoon commander and company commander I ensured that I and my platoon sergeant or 1St Sgt made every promotion in any location with as many in attendance as possible.
Capt. T. L. Johnson, Jr.
United States Marine Corps Ret.

I was in Phoenix and had just met Stoney - he was full of BS for a fact. He was also a cannon cocker who most likely fired support missions for the units I worked with in Vietnam as our tours of duty overlapped in early 1966. And he was one of the funniest guys with waitresses and others he could flirt with - lord we had fun those few days -

I saw him in the hospital after his wreck and still cannot believe that his 20 mph tip over killed him. He'll be missed by a lot of Marines - and others who knew him. But I can tell you for a fact that I'll never look at a waitress again with the same eyes - he's in my heart - Rest easy Marine

Semper Fi
Steve "Eliot" Neff
VN - 65-66

Sgt. Grit -

The Article, Amphibious Reconnaissance Company/Battalions of the 50's submitted by former Corporal Wayne Pilny, Ser Number 1314541 was outstanding. It brought back some great memories for this old Marine. I was a young seventeen year old PFC just out of boot camp and was assigned to Amphib. Recon just before they left for Hawaii. I found my name on the company roster (image 100 of 260) and several pictures that I was in. (Images #105 & 139). It was the greatest assignment a young Marine could have his first year in the Corps.

Former Sergeant of Marines
David J. Herbertson #1391657

Good afternoon Sgt.

Earlier in the week, there was a question about whether or not there should be an identifier on the uniforms of grunts. This reminded me of another issue regarding Marine uniforms.

I friend of mine at work, Doug, is in the army reserves. He often tells me stories about his unit and the soldiers he works with. One of his favorite NCOs happens to be prior service, you guessed it, Marine.

As they were gearing up for deployment, he has to take his NCOs to an out of state meeting with the brass that will be leading them. They travel in civvies, go to their hotel rooms and sleep for the night. The next morning, they meet in the lobby and here is this Sgt. in a 'sterile' uniform. No ribbons and badges, no unit, combat, or qualification patches. Just his rank. My friend not so quietly loses his mind. "What are you thinking? You can't go to the meeting in that uniform! We gotta get you loaded up!" They find the PX and Doug buys all the correct insignia and gets them properly applied just in time for the meeting. (Which went well, by the way)

Back at work, he is telling me this story and asks me why Marines don't wear all the doo dads and gee gaws. Why should any of the higher ups listen to him if they don't know anything about him? I explained that the answer is simple. In the Marine Corps, rank is the only insignia on the utility uniform because that is the only one needed. PFC is higher than Pvt. LCpl. is higher than PFC. and if it's shiny, you probably should salute. The only thing we really need to know is, are you giving the orders or am I?

Love the newsletters and all the great stories! Keep up the great work!

Semper Fi,
LCpl. Walsh K.P.


oki - big or large, as in oki sakana or big fish as the Marines were secretly called by the bar girls in the villes or more correctly:

O KI - Pronounced O-KEY, meaning offshore NAWA - meaning rope or floating rope

Thus, floating rope offshore as seen from Shina or China (Ryukyu Islands)

Joe Alvino
Sgt. of Marines

And I Quote...

"Republics are created by the virtue, public spirit, and intelligence of the citizens. They fall, when the wise are banished from the public councils, because they dare to be honest, and the profligate are rewarded, because they flatter the people, in order to betray them."
--Joseph Story, Commentaries on the Constitution, 1833

I guess I am missing the point about all the whining regarding lack of ceremonies for contract PFCs, or for that matter, other time-in-grade and contract promotions. One blogger said, "As for ceremonies for stripes. Well contracted promotions don't rate. Sorry." I could not agree more. If you signed the dotted line and part of your contract was E-1, or for college wonders, all the frickin' way up to Cpl, big rip! It's a contract, and when you pinned it on-that's fulfillment of the contract.

Meritorious promotions, that's an animal of a different breed. You are being recognized above your peers, presumably, for meritorious duty, something above and beyond. When I received meritorious PFC, they marched our backsides up on the stage, read the names, and then marched us back off. Contract PFC's, they had their stripe already pinned on. I received time-in- grade LCpl, and I don't even recall how or when it happened. All that mattered to me was my pay was going up! Meritorious Cpl a few months later, somebody read something, and somebody handed me chevrons. Meritorious Sgt about 6 months later, that's the one I recall, because becoming a Sgt of Marines meant something. We marched over to the CO's office, he read some document, and we marched back. Couple years later I picked up SSgt with time in grade, making SSgt a hair under 6 years in the Corps.

Promotions ceremonies? Why all the fuss about pomp and circumstance? If you were guaranteed it by contract, be glad the Corps upheld their end of the deal. If you got it time-in- grade, be thankful you were alive to put it on. If you got it meritoriously, be thankful some bloke took the time to say, "ah, shucks, good job," pat you're a$$ on the back, and send you back to duty.

In closing, when I was a SSgt, straight out school they sent me a college wonder with guarantees up to Cpl in 2 years. (Don't get me wrong, I have nothing against college; the Corps sent me to college, but my experience with these types is they felt it was their right and they deserved it. You know what they deserved??? I'll save that for another time.) So this swinging d!k reports for duty, picks up his lance cooley, 6 months later is E-4, and he was the most irresponsible, lazy, good for nothing *&$%. I, a MSgt, and a MGySgt worked with him trying everything possible to get him squared away. In the end, he failed to report for field days in the barracks, and he was busted, and busted again, and busted again, and tossed out with a general discharge.

Let me say this: I sure as h-ll am glad the Corps never gave him any promotion ceremonies for his guaranteed promotions!


BOOT CAMP PICTURE has recently been updated.

First time to write but have been a customer for several years enjoy and look forward to the newsletters weekly, keep up the great work.

Wanted to send this picture of my bootcamp at PI we were honor platoon, I am standing front row right the guide tip is at my right shoulder, if anyone out there remembers or was in this platoon. Also had another DI Sgt Cruz who had to leave on emergency leave to Guam and Sgt Maxwell took over for him. Also anyone from Hotel Co. 2/7 RVN 70/71 & @ LZ & Baldy, Ross, Ryder. I must be old corps as I have serial # 2548402.

Cpl. Bill Hamlin 69-75 RVN 70-71

Somehow I was removed. Something I did I'm sure. My son sent me a picture of a tat he saw on Grit and I realized I hadn't seen anything in awhile... so I'm back on the distribution. My son is a Marine of course and so am I. I remember very well sending him stuff in Iraq from your outfit... and not paying shipping costs. That is a class act... I thanked you before and I'm doing it again now!

Semper Fi
Art Montegari


While being forced to watch that awful show, American Idol by my SGTMAJ (my wife), a contestant was actually wearing a dress blue blouse coat while performing. As a Marine, I was outraged. I believe every Marine should boycott this performance and let the producers of American Idol know how Marines feel about this. I will be writing American Idol to voice my opinion. Please pass this along.

Semper Fi,
Rob Lutz

Sgt. Grit,

I just read a letter posted having to do with an individual that attempts to pass them self off as a Marine. As the friend and relative of actual Marines this enraged me. I am not a Marine, and unfortunately will most likely never EARN THE RIGHT to call myself one. I do however wear a lot t-shirts that say Marines or have comical slogans that are supportive of the Marines. I wear them in support of the Corps, not to try to pass myself off as one of the few, but as a walking advertisement. Hopefully this helps keep our nation's heroes, and what they go through for us, at the forefront of our minds. Whenever asked I make sure to say something like "I didn't serve, just a big fan" or "I didn't pass m.e.p.s. but I love going to the recruiter". Anything to let those asking I know support them 100% without any pretense that I am Marine.

When I hear of someone pretending to be something they are not it makes me sad for them, that they can't be proud of what they really are. But when I hear of them trying to highjack the honor of those who have bleed for us I just want to make a public spectacle of them and embarrass them in front of their loved ones. This type of dishonor to our protectors should not be quietly shushed and put away, but yelled loudly from roof tops. If we make it known that these people are doing this maybe the shame and public humiliation will cause it to happen less often.

Sorry for the rant, but I had to say something. You should all know that most of us wearing your name are doing it as a THANK YOU! not to claim to be one of you.

Your sacrifice grants me the freedom to exercise my God given rights. You do it without asking for anything in return, but please know we are grateful.

A thankful Texan

The term Baby Blue Marine was used between Korea and Viet Nam. They would send the washout home wearing class A Greens Bleached out to a pale blue as a sign of disgrace. The term has stuck. The time period on this might be off I know for a fact they don't do this anymore.

From the MCO P1020.34F MARINE CORPS UNIFORM REGULATIONS "Women Marines will not carry a purse in formation or when the utility uniform is worn. Reference (b) authorizes women Marines to carry umbrellas at their option; however, carrying and using of umbrellas with the utility uniform is inappropriate and is prohibited" Ref : (b) "Female Marines may carry an all-black, plain standard or collapsible umbrella at their option during inclement weather with the service and dress uniforms. It will be carried in the left hand so that the hand salute can be properly rendered. Umbrellas may not be used/carried in formation nor will they be carried with the utility uniform"

I have actually written the Corps about this and have not received an answer. Others I have talked to all basically say the same thing that probably no one knows why it got started but why stop tradition now. I was told the Corps don't have to make sense there the Corps that's all that matters.


i like to let you know that a another Marine died he was 25yrs and service from 2005 to 2009 he has been 2 deployment to the persian gulf war and iraq he met his wife in the Marine she is also a Marine and service 2005 to 2009 and deployment to the war too . he had 2 kids he enjoy the Marines we are proud to know him and what he was doing for the country he will be missed very much

Good morning Sgt. Grit;

A friend of mine, (Tunnel Rat RVN), has in his possession a dollar bill, (U.S. Currency), that was individually signed by an entire mortar crew of United States Marines that took part in the battle for Iwo Jima during WWII. At least four Marines are still alive, two living in New Hampshire. We would like to make sure this piece of Marine Corps History takes it's rite-full place in a good Marine Corps Museum. We have not received very good answers from two prominent organizations.

Semper Fi
jim angelo 1959-1965


Well, it has been almost 4-years since Steven enlisted in the Marine Corps - he enlisted on his 18th birthday - March 14th! Steven will be "out" of the Corps in a few months and is currently exploring both his military reserve and civilian options.

I have to say, it has been quite a "ride" for us, but we have been blessed every step of the way. I am grateful that during his enlistment he had only one deployment and he returned home safe and in good health.

As my way of giving thanks to our military and their families who have to face the hardships of injury or illness, I have made the commitment to raise money for Fisher House Foundation by running in the 36th annual Marine Corps Marathon! Yes, a "marathon" really is 26.2 miles!

This may sound crazy since I'm not even close to what you would consider to being a "runner" and I have yet to run more than 1/2 mile without having to walk!! But, I am honored and committed to running for our brave men and women of the armed forces and their families who continue to make sacrifices each and every day for us. Yes, I have my work cut out for me!

I am raising money for this very important cause and I'm asking you to help by making a contribution!

Giving a donation is a personal choice and whether you choose to give $5 or $100, something in between or perhaps more, it will make a difference! Like the old saying goes - if everyone reading this gave just $1 it truly would make a difference!

Please use the link in this email to donate online quickly and securely. You will receive email confirming your donation. If you prefer to make your donation by mail, the link below will also give you the option of printing out a donation form or just let me know and I will be happy to get the form to you!

Donate to Fisher House - Colleen Marathon

It may seem like the marathon is a long way off, but please don't put off making your donation! The support of donors like you will definitely offer me encouragement during my training!

I would also appreciate you forwarding this email on to anyone who you think might be willing to donate to this organization!

Thank you in advance for your support, and I really appreciate your generosity!


PS: running tips and words of encouragement are welcome!

The following member has unsubscribed from all lists.
They were logged on the Remove List for all lists.

Date: 3/3/2011
Reason: My father recently passed away, Once a Marine, Always a Marine. My siblings and I would have competitions when it came to giving my father gifts on his birthday and holidays as to who could one up everybody else on the best Marine Corps gift. Needless to say, I found Sgt. Grit and from there on out, I always won! While I enjoy receiving your e-mails, right now I am finding it hard to read and a painful reminder of my father's passing.
First Name: Charlotte

God Bless America!
Semper Fi
Sgt Grit