Sgt Grit Newsletter - 11 MAR 2015

In this issue:
• Thanking The Marine Corps
• Sorry About That Reversed
• Honoring Marine's Final Wish

Online Store TShirts Men's Headgear Patches Women's

Flags   Family Member   Ka-Bars   Auto   Headgear  Jackets  ALL CATEGORIES  

Request a catalog
Facebook Twitter Sgt Grit Blog Sgt Grit's RSS Feeds
 
USMC Baseball, Hat, and Unisex Jersey Combo Special
 
Featured Item

U.S. Marines Reverse Applique Pullover HoodieU.S. Marines Reverse Applique Pullover Hoodie


Vietnam War Era

USMC Vietnam Commemorative KA-BARUSMC Vietnam Commemorative KA-BAR


See More Vietnam War Era Items

Moto T-shirts

Marines Established MDCCLXXV T-shirtMarines Established MDCCLXXV T-shirt


U.S. Marines Under Armour Hi-Vis Tech T-shirtU.S. Marines Under Armour Hi-Vis Tech T-shirt


U.S. Marines Under Armour Sleeveless Tech T-shirtU.S. Marines Under Armour Sleeveless Tech T-shirt


U.S. Marines Under Armour Performance T-shirtU.S. Marines Under Armour Performance T-shirt


Marines Under Armour Flyweight Performance T-shirtMarines Under Armour Flyweight Performance T-shirt


Marines 1775 Mineral Wash T-ShirtMarines 1775 Mineral Wash T-Shirt


See All T-shirts

KA-BAR Displays

Eagle, Globe, and Anchor Coin and KA-BAR DisplayEagle, Globe, and Anchor Coin and KA-BAR Display


MCRD Parris Island Coin and KA-BAR DisplayMCRD Parris Island Coin and KA-BAR Display


MCRD San Diego Coin and KA-BAR DisplayMCRD San Diego Coin and KA-BAR Display


Purple Heart Coin and KA-BAR DisplayPurple Heart Coin and KA-BAR Display


Ronald Reagan Quote Coin and KA-BAR DisplayRonald Reagan Quote Coin and KA-BAR Display


See All KA-BAR Displays

New Items

Marines Square Wooden Coaster Set with Eagle, Globe, and AnchorMarines Square Wooden Coaster Set with Eagle, Globe, and Anchor


See All New Items

Sgt Grit's Catalog

Browse our digital catalog.Take a look inside our digital catalog.


Request A Catalog

Links

Print this newsletter
Newsletter Archives

Wheeler family pet Jasper

I have had such an awesome experience shopping on your website so many great gift ideas for my Marine husband. The Devil pup is Jasper, he is 5 months old and is so smart and protective. Already a true Marines dog!

Semper Fi,
Wheeler family

Order this squared away combo at:

Marines Limited Edition T-Shirt and Hat Combo

Marines Limited Edition T-Shirt and Hat Combo


The Triad

The Triad D-Day

The Triad Hike Record Falls

1stSgt John Alread sent me a copy of April 1962 Triad. I will add it to my hallway collection for others to view and enjoy.

Semper Fi,
Sgt Grit


Except For One

MGySgt Chuck LeDrew standing next to Vietnam his photo

Recently in sunny Yuma, AZ we had a Yuma Military Appreciation day on Main St., down town... a successful one-day event that had static displays of military equipment, demonstrations of K-9's, Marine martial arts, and an EOD robot. There was also a 40' replica of the USS Arizona, a 30' replica of the submarine USS Barbel, and much more. In addition there was a military art show at the Yuma Art Gallery. The artwork was all Army from the Yuma Proving Ground Heritage Museum, except for one black and white poster photo of two Marine Sergeants. The attached photo shows today's Chuck LeDrew standing by a photo of Sgt's Chuck LeDrew and Chuck Johnson, at Chu Lai, Vietnam in 1966... 49 years ago! Time does fly!

Carlton (Chuck) LeDrew
MGySgt USMC Retired​


I Guess I Missed Out

In reply: Sorry about that by Sgt. Harlan.

I guess I missed out on many things about returning from Vietnam, maybe I was in the right place at the right time. I was never spit upon, had nasty signs put in my face or called a child or baby killer. I was always treated with respect while in uniform.

I remember a cereal called Krispy Critters and many Marines had written: Napalm Makes Krispy Critters on their helmets. I thought it was funny. Maybe it is my demeanor from being a former DI but when a civilian makes the comment: Thank you for your service. I always respond: It was my pleasure to kill as many g--k communists or have my platoon do it as possible. I get these strange looks as I walk away, but I like the confused look on their faces.

Marines get paid to kill the enemy and many, many other boring jobs in peace time. War is good, it builds competency under fire.

J L Stelling


Property of MCRD Performance System T-shirt


DaNang '70 - '71

Choo Choo Marble Mountain Vietnam 1970

Choo Choo fly over DaNang Hanger area 1970

Was in DaNang '70 - '71 and Marble Mountain 1971 till stand down. Here's a few I took over there.

Semper Fi
Choo Choo
Sgt
1968-1974
RVN '70 - '71


Marine Hunter KA-BAR


Perfect BAR Qual

Regarding BAR qualification in the last newsletter. While stationed at Del Mar in '63 or '64 I was on a detail (all expert shooters, so it must have been the ol' man's jab at the powers that be) that was sent to a rifle range up the coast overlooking the ocean to pull butts for the First Marine Division BAR qualifications. About halfway through word came down the line saying that there was a shooter that hadn't missed yet. We started keeping track and this shooter ended up shooting a perfect score with his BAR, squeezing off single shots. When we got back to the barracks and told the story we were told it was BS. The story ended up in Leatherneck magazine a few months later (we should have bet!). I'm not sure if there was a shooting badge for that but there should have been. When "Full metal jacket" came out I went to see it alone because I was sure no one, including my wife, would understand any of it and sure enough the scene where they were laying at attention in their rack reciting the "Rifleman's Pledge" I began reciting it under my breath. I noticed the people around me were laughing thinking it was something that was made up for the movie. I became irate and wanted to stand up and tell them that this was sh-t was real! They also thought that marching around reciting, "this is my rifle, this is my gun" was something that was also funny and made up. Oh these poor innocent civilians, I'm sure there were probably some doggies and swabs thrown in there for good measure too.

CPL Selders


​I'm Lucky

I have mixed emotions regarding the argument "era" vs. "in country". If you see an elderly gentleman wearing a cover with "WWII Vet" on it, do you ask yourself whether he served in Europe, the Pacific, or the States? Probably not. He is a WWII veteran.

I have been thanked many times in public for "my service". I reply. "You are welcome". Why wouldn't I appreciate their thanks? Should I mock their appreciation with some smart azz reply?

I'm lucky. I experienced the disdain and coldness as a Marine Viet Nam vet. I also experienced the welcome and thanks as a Soldier returning from Iraq.

We are veterans whether in country or not. Whether combat or not. A veteran is a veteran is a veteran. We served! So we can ALL say, "You are welcome, it was an honor to serve".

Mark Smith, CWO5, US Army Retired
Iraq

223XXXX
Viet Nam​


Thanking The Marine Corps

Marine Corps moto wall

"Thank You for Your Service". I hear this frequently, because I carry the Eagle, Globe and Anchor wherever I go. It is proudly displayed on my trucks state license plate, on the flag pole in my front yard, on my cover that never leaves my head, on my shirt for all to see, on the wall in my office to remind me of the sacrifices that I made. I do not display these to garner respect. I display these because I earned them and thus I show the respect the emblem deserves. The eagle represents the proud nation we defend. The globe represents our worldwide responsibility. The anchor points to the Marine Corps' naval heritage. Together, the eagle, globe and anchor symbolize our commitment to defend our nation—in the air, on land and at sea. I do not boast nor is it my intent in wearing the badge to obtain a pat on the back or an 'Ata Boy'. It's my way of thanking the United States Marine Corps.

T. E. Kinsey
Sgt of Marines
'68 - '70​


Young And Old

This in response to Sgt. Gary Harlan's letter about not appreciating people thanking him for his service.

Well, I personally disagree with him. I am very proud and humbled to have serviced my Country, especially as a United States Marine (1951-1961 active duty). Korean war Vet '52 - '53. Some called it an action, but it was a real war to me and others.

To the point of my response: It is my opinion that those who offer thanks to military personnel whether they be non-military types or veterans, do so with all sincerity. Why would they go out of their way to offer thanks to a Vet, Active duty, or a Reservist if they were not sincere.

If they didn't really care they would not have spoken at all, just ignore and go on their way. I have had young and old men and women, children, say Thank you for your service. Each and every time I swell with pride, and thank GOD, knowing that I have served in the Marine Corps in the the greatest Country in the world.

This is my opinion and That's All I Have To Say About That.

Semper Fi,
John Vogel, SGT.


Sorry About That Reversed

I wrote a letter that appeared in last week's newsletter under the heading, "Sorry About That." I asserted that the sudden interest in people thanking me for my service struck me as annoying and absurd. I wrote, "There are exceptions--namely, when those words are uttered by fellow vets," the clear implication being that I wasn't interested in what civilians had to say about my service. I received the newsletter the evening of March 4th. Something occurred the following day that made me realize how terribly wrong I was in writing that.

March 5th is a date that is actually more meaningful to me than my own birthday. In fact, I think of it as the day I was reborn. In 1966 it was the second day of Operation Utah, the first contact between the USMC and the NVA--specifically, the 1st Marines, the 4th Marines, and the 7th Marines up against the 21st NVA Regiment. My own unit, Lima Company 3/1, faced two battalions of NVA on Hill 50. After over three hours of fighting, the hill was captured. By the end of that day 3/1 had suffered 32 killed and 90 wounded. When the operation ended two days later, 98 Marines had been killed and 278 wounded.

The first thing I read after waking up this March 5th was a simple yet profound message from our company commander, Simon Gregory:

Gentlemen,

49 years, and we will always remember.

Semper Fidelis,
Simon


After reading this I visited the online directory of the names on The Wall (http://thewall-usa.com/) to look up the men we lost that day. Each name includes information such as branch of service, rank, where and how they were killed, and where their names appear on The Wall. Then you are told to click here for personal comments or pictures. One of the names I visited was Staff Sergeant Leonard Hultquist. When I clicked the personal comments I read a moving inscription from his daughter, Melody. She had included her email address so I wrote to her. I told her that though I served in the 1st platoon and her dad was the platoon sergeant of the 2nd platoon I was acquainted with him and was well aware of the level of respect he held in the company.

Melody wrote back, telling me how much my letter meant to her. She wrote, "My sisters and I were very young (3, 5, and 6) when our Dad was killed, so we don't have a lot of memories. However, when our Mother passed away in 1999, I came upon all of my Dad's letters to my Mom while he was in Vietnam. I came to know a very brave, wise man, who was willing and eager to fight for his country. I remain, to this day, so very, very proud of his sacrifice."

I replied to her letter and she replied to my reply. At the end of her second letter she wrote, "Thank you for your service, Gary." The second I read those words I was deeply ashamed of what I had written in the newsletter.

Semper Fidelis,
Gary Harlan
Sergeant of Marines


Honoring Marine's Final Wish

Marines honoring Sgt Loneman's final wish

By Rob Hughes
KOCO 5

A dying Marine had one final wish. He wanted to be buried in uniform, along with a Marine Corps flag.

"He had a good heart. He had a great sense of humor," said Christine Cleary with the Oklahoma City Veteran's Affairs Medical Center.

Donnie Loneman loved being a Marine. He was recently diagnosed with terminal cancer. Doctors gave him three weeks to live.

"He was interested in who was going to be left behind," said Cleary, standing in the room Loneman passed away in the night before.

Cleary knew Loneman well and was by his side constantly in his final days.

Homeless for the last decade, Loneman didn't have a dress uniform, and couldn't afford one.

"Donnie was his own person. He did what he wanted, and a lot of people fell in love with him for that. We get guys like him once in a blue moon, who really make a difference for everyone here," said Cleary.

The Oklahoma City Veterans Affairs told Loneman's story and saw an outpouring of support and sympathy from many veteran's organizations, including the Folds of Honor Foundation, Honoring America's Warriors, Catholic War Veteran's League, Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve, Oklahoma Department of Veteran's Affairs and Disabled American Veterans.

The Kiowa Black Leggings Society, United Keetoowah Band of Cherokees and the Chickasaw Nation all worked with Sgt. Grit Marine Specialties to get the dress blues and flag donated. These organizations came together, not only to honor his final wish, but also to pay his funeral expenses and give him an honor guard.

Loneman wanted his pallbearers to be Marines.

"He said I don't want you guys to be sad, I want you guys to keep going, and keep helping people," said Cleary.

Loneman died Thursday night. He will be buried the same way he served our country, with honor and dignity.

"He said, 'I'm going to enter the gates, and I'm going to tell all the Marines that are standing there that they're relieved of their duty, and I'm going to take their place, and I'll stand there until my arm gets tired, and another Marine comes.' He said 'I'm ready to go," said Cleary.

One of Loneman's friends wrote the following letter to honor his legacy:

I first met Donnie Loneman at the Shawnee Native American Stand Down. I gave him my card, told him about my program and answered his questions. He moved on. This is a story that Carolyn Fletcher tells about that day: Donnie struck up a conversation with her, because he is Cheyenne-Arapaho. She explained that she could assist him with housing, but Donnie told her he was not ready for that responsibility. They talked for a bit, and Donnie moved on. Soon, he returned, showing her a cap he had been given by someone. He was like a kid at Christmas, big-eyed and excited. "Look what they gave me!" he said. Later he returned again, showing her the sleeping bag and shoes that he had received. Each time, there was a sense of wonder that someone cared about him, that he mattered enough to be given something.

Once more he returned, standing at attention with his cap on, his back pack in place, with his new boots. He said "Look!" and then removed his hat. He had a new haircut, what he called a "high and tight Marine cut." He was so proud, smiling from ear to ear. Shortly after he left, another lady approached Carolyn. She told Carolyn that she had seen Donnie around Shawnee for five years, but she had never seen him smile."

Shortly after that, Loneman moved to Oklahoma City. He was fighting his demons. Christine Cleary with the VA homeless program worked to get Donnie off the streets.

Loneman seemed to feel that he did not deserve it. He always said that we should save it for the veteran who needed it more than him.

He used to come and see me every week or so. I think he liked that I "mothered" him. When I scolded him for staying out in the cold, he always smiled real big, and told me that he was a Marine, and Marines are tough. "We can take it, we can take anything," he said.

So when a doctor told me that he had three weeks to live, he told me that they cried for a couple minutes, but that was it. He was happy, he said, for three reasons. One: He was going to see the Lord. Two: He was going to see his mother, and three: he knew that when he gets to the pearly gates, there would be a Marine standing guard. That Marine would salute him, and then go on into heaven. Then Donnie would stand guard until the next Marine arrived.

Christine and I listened while Donnie planned his funeral. He asked for three things, a Marine "high and tight" haircut, Marine dress blues and a Marine flag for his casket. Christine sent out a call for help, and the response was great. He received all of his requests.

He passed away Thursday evening with his friend Ricky, his sister-in-law, and his niece by his side. The nurses said that he looked "perfect" with eyes and mouth closed with a very peaceful smile on his face.

One nurse said "You could sure tell where he was going."


Shed Some Light

Platoon flag 1054

Saw this in an Antique Mall. I wondered if anyone could shed some light on it. I doubt a Drill Instructor would readily give it up.

Jim Grimes
Sgt. 1969-72


1st Fumagation and Bath Platoon

Sgt. Grit,

In my 88th year I was looking back on my times in WWII, Korean War and Vietnam. Korea had the most interesting things the Marine Corps found to do for us. They formed the 1st Fumigation and Bath Platoon who came behind the lines and set up. A Platoon would come off the lines and go into a tent, take your clothes off, put your valuables in a small ditty bag, then go into a tent connected where several shower heads poured out hot water. You scaped the dirt off, washed and shaved with hot soap and water. Then go back into the first tent and you were issued clean skivvys and dungarees.

When you got dressed you went into a tent near by and got Hot Chow. Sometimes you got paid and sometimes not. Once I got paid and went to the PX Truck and bought a case (24 bars) of candy and 3 cartoons of cigarettes. I bought Phillip Morris because the PX Truck went to the Officers first and the Luckys and Camels were all gone.

The rest of the time you washed in your helmet with cold water. The joke then was they poured water in your helmet, you washed and shaved, then washed your dungarees, then your blankets, all in the same water. Leaving Korea was a pleasure for more than usual.

GySgt. F. L. Rousseau, usmc Retired​


Apology From The Commandant

In my radio section in 3/27th Marines, we had a radio operator from Philadelphia. He reported in with several of us at the same time. Regt. HQ assigned us to 3/27. Six months later, he received a letter from his brother stating the FBI had been asking the neighbors about him. It seems the Marine Corps had listed him as a deserter. The mistake was straightened out. His brother who had served in the Corps was not too happy. He wrote the Commandant of the Marine Corps. My friend was notified one morning before muster, that he would be called front and center of the battalion formation. At formation his name was called. He was required to leave ranks and present himself to the Colonel. The Colonel read an apology from the Commandant of the Marine Corps to him and his family. It seems Regt HQ assigned him to 3/27 and sent his orders to 2/27.

After six months, 2/27 reported him as a deserter. Both battalions shared Camp Margarita on Pendleton. The good part was that he seemed privileged until it was old news.

Sgt. Kurt Schinze
USMC H & S Co. Comm. FAC Team


8-Man Squad Drill

I have a copy of LPM-1950. It does not include the 8-man Squad Drill, but I also do have a copy of the 8-man drill manual including Company Drill. The 8-man drill was re-introduced in 1954 for use in non-FMF units. It was a very difficult drill to learn, but impressive when well executed. As the Commandant's letter stated at its release, it was meant to enhance the junior NCO's (Squad leader) leadership. At that time, squad leaders were Sgt.(E-4) or Cpl. (E-3). I was at MCAS Quantico 1954-1956 and all our drills and reviews used the 8-man squad formation. You could get a platoon well scattered with a command such as 'On Right into Line', or Right Front Into Line. Company level of 3 platoons could get hairy.

GySgt Paul Santiago
1946-1968​


The Ghost Ship​

Ghost Ship book cover

Hi Sgt. Grit,

At the age of 80 I wrote a book called "The Ghost Ship". It had that name because the Navy never knew where the ship was, could not tell anyone what missions they were on or even acknowledge that it existed. The only way we could find the ship was if we could see it tied up at the finger piers at North Island Naval air station, San Diego. The Ghost Ship was the most top secret ship in our Navy, the Marines that served on her were the most top secret Detachment in the Marine Corps and were classified Top Secret for 45 years. I served aboard her for two years and it was the most elite outfit in the Corps. Only the top two graduates of Sea School were picked for this Detachment. There was a group of Marines stationed at Sea School in 1953 called "The Movie Platoon", they also were the top two graduates of Sea School. They were making a movie for the Commandant on guard mounts. They also represented MCRD at official functions, funerals, etc., most of the Marines in this Platoon were also picked for the Top Secret Detachment. I served on three operations in those two years. Operation Castle was six nuclear tests, the Bravo shot was the largest hydrogen bomb the United States set off. Operation Surf Board was the largest peace time landing. We put 12,000 soldiers from Fort Ord and Camp Roberts ashore at San Simeon and shortly after that we were on Operation Wigwam, an atomic bomb set off 2000 feet underwater to see if an atomic bomb could be used against a sub and how it would effect surface ships. It was set off 450 miles southwest of San Diego. The profits are shared with the Wounded Warrior Project and the Curtiss Atomic Marines.

Get this book at The Ghost Ship.

Semper Fi and God Bless,
Ed Franklin 1953-56
Email: edmax60[at]comcast.net


What the "P" Meant

I went through Parris Island Boot Camp in August/1949. On the bottom of the pistol grip, of the wood stock, a circled "P" was stamped or branded on. What does this represent? At the final inspection, we were ordered, NEVER to say, "I do not know" to the inspection officer. When I was asked what the "P" meant, I blurted out, "Sir, that means that the stock was pressure tested." I know that was wrong. Any old salts around that really knows what the "P" stands for? Thank-you.

Emilio Galiano Reynoso


Iwo Jima 5th Marine Division Cemetery

Sgt. Grit,

My father Pfc. James Michels was one of the Marines that helped raise the first flag on Mt. Suribachi. He only talked about two things. One was of the cheering below as the small flag went up. The other was about the Dedication of the 5th Marine Division Cemetery on Iwo Jima and how sad it was for everyone. He told me he cried. The following is something I want to share on this 70th Anniversary:

Betty McMahon​


Rabbi Roland B. Gittelsohn at the Dedication of the 5th Marine Division Cemetery on Iwo Jima.

This is perhaps the grimmest, and surely the holiest task we have faced since D-Day. Here, before us lie the bodies of comrades and friends. Men who until yesterday or last week laughed with us, joked with us, trained with us. Men who were on the same ships with us, and went over the sides with us as we prepared to hit the beaches of this island. Men who fought with us and feared with us. Somewhere in this plot of ground there may lie the man who could have discovered the cure for cancer. Under one of these Christian crosses, or beneath a Jewish Star of David, there may rest now a man who was destined to be a great prophet - to find the way, perhaps, for all to live in plenty, with poverty and hardship for none. Now they lie here silently in this sacred soil, and we gather to consecrate this earth in their memory.

It is not easy to do so. Some of us have buried our closest friends here. We saw these men killed before our very eyes. Any one of us might have died in their places. Indeed, some of us are alive and breathing at this very moment only because men who lie here beneath us had the courage and strength to give their lives for ours. To speak in memory of such men as these is not easy. Of them too can it be said with utter truth: "The world will little note nor long remember what we say here." It can never forget what they did here."

No, our poor power of speech can add nothing to what these men and the other dead who are not here have already done. All that we even hope to do is follow their example. To show the same selfless courage in peace that they did in war. To swear that by the grace of God and the stubborn strength and power of human will, their sons and ours shall never suffer these pains again. These men have done their job well. They have paid the ghastly price of freedom. If that freedom be once again lost, as it was after the last war, the unforgivable blame will be ours not theirs. So it is we the living who are here to be dedicated and consecrated.

Too much blood has gone into this soil for us to let it lie barren. Too much pain and heartache have fertilized the earth on which we stand. We here solemnly swear: This shall not be in vain! Out of this, and from the suffering and sorrow of those who mourn this, will come - we promise - the birth of a new freedom for the sons of men everywhere.


Cheese Louise, It Was About Time​

Life in the Old Corps, San Francisco, 1946, '47, '48.

The War had ended, San Francisco Naval Base was getting ships that had been moth balled and anchored in a section of the Base. Sailors were being Discharged from Ships and Submarines there. The Marine Guards at the base Guarded the Gates and the Warehouses full of Surplus Material. At the base, ships were docked and material removed from the ship and stored on the docks. In one place they were storing lead weights used as Ballast for ships, the lead weights were about 15 inches long and maybe 5 inches square and weighed about 25 pounds. Sailors and Marines were using the weights in the back of their cars to hold down the back so you could speed. I had a 1935 Ford coupe and loaned it to Marines off duty, they took it down and loaded weights in the trunk. Then they caught men selling the Lead Weights.

Base Housing was just out the gate, and outside the Front Gate were Two Bars that were infamous during the War, GIGI's and DAGO MARY's where Sailors and Marines from the Ships could have a cool one while waiting for the Bus to take them into San Francisco proper and sometimes find a girl or two. Duty was day on and day off, week end on and weekend off, later we had the Burial Details for the War dead brought back also. A Glue Factory was at the back Gate, the stench was unbearable.

We even had to set up Machine Guns during Training Missions on streets in the city, in case Russian Invasion (common stuff then). Two Commandants Inspected us while I was there, Gen. VanDer Grift and General Cates. Men were being Discharged and we Sometimes had running Guard, (4 Hours on and 8 Off), I heard the Marine Divisions at Camp Pendleton were short a complete Regiment but had a skeleton Regiment instead. Times were tough and those (not Quite) 75,000 of us had to fill the breach many times when we lacked the men to do as required, such as A Parade in San Francisco for Spanish American War Veterans. The Korean War brought us back soon enough and Congress realized they couldn't cut the Armed Forces down too low and finally Voted a full compliment of Navy, Marine, Army and Air Force along with a Pay Raise that helped the Military to Raise up quite a bit. "Cheese Louise" it was about time.

GySgt. F. L. Rousseau


Got To Thinking About It

In boot camp, July-October of 1957, we were taught 13-man squad drill... may have gone by another name, but that's what we did... as mentioned, the 'pivot man' was crucial. The Squad Leader, while part of the formation, was in neither rank nor file, but marched along side his squad... who were arrayed four abreast, three deep. When the command was, for example "squads, right about'... 'march', each squad pivoted around their fire team leader, who would have been on the right... the squad leader had to step smartly through the gap that would appear, so as to wind up on the correct side. The pivot man, or more correctly the pivot men, three per squad, would be the extreme right or left of each four man rank... a platoon going straight ahead would have the Guide at the right front, and four columns behind him, with the squad leaders out on the left side of the column. (that trip between rotating squads was good for screwing up a shoe shine in later stages... boots or boondockers, not so much... I made it many times. (in between the times I was 'fired' as a Squad Leader... LOL) I recall our Senior DI/Platoon commander, SSGT J.A. Hollinshead, commenting that he had to memorize something like 435 different steps, most involving the pivot men. I have pictures in my platoon book of the platoon in those kinds of formations... from memory, at ITR and later on, most marchng (chow formations, etc) were some variant of the LPM... three files, NCO's at the front when in column, on the right when halted and given 'left face'... simple, and functional. I think the first ALMAR issued by General Shoup was something to the effect that 'henceforth, the USMC will utilize nothing other than Landing Party Manual Drill, as long as I am Commandant"... goin' on 55 years now, seems to be working pretty well. "Collumnnnn of Files... from the right"... right squad leader sounds off "Fooooward' (no command of execution... that will come from he/she who is in charge of the formation... middle and left squad leaders sound off "Stand Fast"... and will follow that with their commands of 'column half-right, column half-left, etc. so that their files fall in a single file behind the right squad...

Got to thinking about it, realized that a fairly large segment of your readership probably served relatively short times in the VN era, may have had the eight-week boot camp experience, and in sum, just didn't have to do a whole lot of close order drill, and even at that, the probability of several hours of COD on the training schedule would vary with the amount of equipment a unit had to maintain...

​ Ddick


Chuck Mawhinney​

Just finished reading Gunny Souder's post in this weeks letters, and couldn't let this one go by...Although Carlos Hathcock's was probably the most storied sniper during our Southeast Asian War Games, he did not have the most number of recorded kills at 93. That title goes to Chuck Mawhinney, who served as a Marine sniper for 16 months with 5th Marines in 1968-69. Mawhinney is on record having 103 confirmed kills, with 216 probables. There was another Marine sniper named Eric England, who also topped Hathcock's count with a recorded 98 confirmed kills during his tour. The top sniper during the Vietnam conflict was a US Army sniper named Adelbert Waldron, with a total of 109 confirmed kills.

Carlos Hathcock was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis (MS) and was medically retired at 100% disability from the Corps just 55 days short of serving his full 20 years. After retiring, he fell into a state of depression for a long time, eventually taking up shark fishing, which helped with his depression. After that, Hathcock provided sniper instruction to police departments and select military units. Because of his debilitating problems with MS, any correlation between the life of Carlos Hathcock and the Tom Berenger "Sniper" movies has to be viewed as pure Hollywood speculation. On 22 February 1999, Carlos Hathcock died of complications resulting from his MS. His son, Carlos Hathcock III went on to follow in his father's footsteps as a Marine sniper, and retired as a Gunnery Sergeant.

Chuck Mawhinney finished his enlistment in 1970, and has since retired from the US Forest Service, and currently lives in here in Oregon, in the small town of Lakeview, in the southeast part of the state.

S/F,
Jim Mackin
MGySgt USMC(Ret)
1964 - 1987


The Piece on Gy/Sgt Carlos Hathcock, states that Chuck Mawhinney was in the Army, Chuck Mawhinney was a 5th Marine Scout Sniper. I know because I served with him.

Former Sgt. and Scout Sniper,
Semper Fi,
Louie Mackey


Love getting your newsletter each Thursday; really makes my day!

I am sure by now GySgt. Lew Souder (Ret.) is getting a lot of fire called down on his head. The great Marine sniper Chuck Mawhinney would probably be a little upset to be referred to as an "Army sniper!"

Well, we all make mistakes. Don't be too hard on him.

S/F,
Wayne Dillon
SgtMaj. USMC (Ret.)
1975-2003​

Note: Myself and my trusted cohort Sgt Williams missed that army error. Sorry for the error. We should have corrected it.

Sgt Grit


Short Rounds

In the March 4th Newsletter C. Stoney Brooks stated that the latest engraved Expert Bar he had saw was '59-'60. My first bar I received for Expert was received in 1964, supposedly from HQMC which was the only place you could get them, was engraved on the bar '62 '63 '64. Not sure but I may still have it but don't remember when the stated AWARDS BARS came into place as in 1st Award Etc. and my current bar of 8th Award.

Semper Fi,
MGySgt (Ret'd) Billy J. Russell
1962-1985​


Old limerick for St. Patrick's Day

There was a young lass from Racine,
Who swore she was a "Lovemaking" machine,
But she said "I won't rust"
"Because I service the Lust"
"Of a s-x starved young U.S. Marine"!

"Down and Out if you want it, Prive"

Rusty Hubbarth


What a Dad, Husband and Navy Doc!

Everyone needs to watch this short video by Steven Spielberg. Cmdr. Bill Krissoff... A son is killed, what a father did to honor his son. An American Hero!

Steven Speilberg/Cmdr. Bill Krissoff


It is an identity, it is a cheer, it is a fact, it is a brag, it is a threat, it is a challenge, it is an honor, it is an explanation, it is courage, it is reality... but it is never false humility nor an excuse... "I am a United States Marine."

Old Pete and Daughter Khat


There's a great multi-page article in the March, 2015 issue of MAXIM MAGAZINE (close-up picture of Victoria's Secret model on cover). Its called "The Last Patrol" and is a great and detailed account of Marine Corps Force Recon in Nam.

Cpl. E-4 Bill Reed
Reno, NV


Quotes

WWII The Dash

When Private 1st Class Edward H. Ahrens in WWII was found clutching a sword surrounded by 13 dead Japanese soldiers, his final words were "I guess they didn't know I was a Marine."


"Perfection of means and confusion of ends seem to characterize our age."
--Albert Einstein


"It is error alone which needs the support of government. Truth can stand by itself. Subject opinion to coercion: whom will you make your inquisitors? Fallible men; men governed by bad passions, by private as well as public reasons. And why subject it to coercion? To produce uniformity. But is uniformity of opinion desirable?"
--Jefferson, Notes on State of Virginia, 1787​


"By their victory, the 3rd, 4th and 5th Marine Divisions and other units of the Fifth Amphibious Corps have made an accounting to their country which only history will be able to value fully. Among the Americans who served on Iwo Island, uncommon valor was a common virtue."
--Admiral Chester W. Nimitz, U.S. Navy


​"The Marine Corps has just been called by the New York Times, 'The elite of this country.' I think it is the elite of the world."
--Admiral William Halsey, U.S. Navy


"Asshole to Belly Button Girls."

"When I give a command, all I better see is A**holes and elbows!"

"Your OTHER LEFT, numbnuts!"

"Are YOU eyeballing me, boy?​"

"Sir! By your leave sir... GET!"

"When I say sh-t, I want you to swat and say what color sir?... Marine Corps Green!"

Gung Ho!
Sgt Grit

©2015 Sgt Grit Inc
All rights reserved
7100 SW 44th Street
Oklahoma City, OK 73179
888-NOV-1775
You are reading Sgt Grit's weekly newsletter.

To Submit a story - Email info@grunt.com.
Subscribe to this newsletter.

Unsubscribe from the Sgt Grit Newsletter and Special Offers email list.