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Sgt Grit Newsletter VS AmericanCourage Newsletter:
You receive both (alternating weeks)...so what's the difference?
In short...The AmericanCourage Newsletter has MORE family member
stories, "support the Corps" stories from Marines, and patriotic
quotes. It started after the events of Sept. 11, 2001 to give
supporters of the Marine Corps and American patriots a voice.
The Sgt Grit Newsletter is HARD CORPS Marine! If you are
interested in topics that delve into Marine Corps history, Corps
Stories, Boot Camp and other things that "only a Marine might
understand" - then be sure to read the Sgt Grit Newsletter
(every other week) - More about the newsletter
I have just finished reading this month's issue of Leatherneck
magazine and read an article that had a quote by "CHESTY"
himself that I had never heard and thought that other fellow
Marines might find motivating. Here it is....
"After watching a Marine raise the flag over the American
Consulate in Oct 1950, as fighting still raged in Seoul, Korea,
an Army officer growled something about Marines would rather
carry a flag into battle than a rifle. Then - Col Lewis B.
"CHESTY" Puller replied, "A man with a flag in his pack and the
desire to put it on an enemy strongpoint isn't likely to bug
When the Marines of 3/9 arrived at An Hoa after leaving the
Water Point near Marble Mountain in April 1966, there was
nothing but shelter-halves for personal sleeping quarters.
Hardbacks were finally built during the summer BUT, we were out
in the field all of the time. The one night India Company got to
sleep in a hardback the VC mortared us killing two of our
brothers and wounding many including yours truly.
Fast forward to 1967 and 3/9 is now all along the DMZ. During
the summer we (India) was the "Sparrow Hawk" force working out
of Dong Ha. On a rare day that we actually had off, some
officers arrived in our area requesting our assistance in moving
something. That "something" just happened to be a full size
hardback built in the wrong place. Marines improvise, right?
Here is a photo that ended up in SEA TIGER of how we did it!
On a serious note, our Corpsman from Getlin's Corner, Doc Chuck
Dockery who lost both his legs to numerous gunshot and
mortars/rockets wounds, is in the University of Washington
Hospital ICU. He had surgery to repair 2 of 3 aneurysms to his
aorta. His heart and part of a lung that survived lung cancer
now with pneumonia plus he has only one kidney having lost one
during the battle. Doc is in critical condition! Please pray for
him and his wife and two kids. Doc is our rock! When we dragged
him into our last stand position at Getlin's Corner with more
wounds than any of us who survived he said, "lay me next to a
Marine that needs my help!"
Please pray for Doc! God bless you and God bless our troops at
Jack Riley I/3/9 1966-1967
Cheers Were Loud Enough
Old Corps? ( Picture of platoon 103 San Diego, and USS
Princeton in the Gulf of Siam)
I enlisted in 1953 and went to San Diego on January 3, 1954. (I
Korea ended in November of 1953 so most of the drill instructors
were vets from the war as was ours. He was Sgt Dilks and had
one eye that looked slightly to the side so keeping your eyes
straight ahead was nearly impossible when he was in your face.
Did the drill instructors pass out physical punishment? Yes,
and it was deserved for the most part. They did have their
games using us as punching bags but it was all part of the
process of getting us ready if Korea broke out again. Many
recruits owe Sgt Dilks their thanks for setting them up for life
itself. If you're still with us Sgt Dilks: Thank you!
There were no yellow footprints but then we were already smart
enough to not look down.
I was scheduled to go to Electronics school out of boot but my
history of playing the drums sent me to the Field Music school
in San Diego where I was stuck for a couple years. Then I was
assigned to the Fleet Marine Force Pacific Drum and Bugle Team
in Pearl Harbor. We toured all the Pacific military bases and
Alaska as good will ambassadors which took us to Japan. One day
orders came to load up and board the aircraft carrier USS
Princeton. No word of why but we were issued 45s before we
boarded ship. (No ammo)
Once we were out to sea we were told by the Princeton's Captain
that we were to be part of a Southeast Asia Treaty Organization
war games. We had 6 or 7000 other Marines on board and a bunch
of little helicopters. We were to be part of the first ever
helicopter assault landings. Most of us had not even been close
to a chopper much less actually get on one.
A bag piper was also aboard and practiced seemingly all the days
we dinked around getting to Thailand. (18 days) Someone must
have known he was going to be with us when the decision was made
not to issue ammo. When we loaded up in our heloteams (name
must have been made up by a swabbie) the bagpiper was scheduled
to go in on the first run. I was in the team behind him. There
must have been 10 choppers once they all got air born and
turned to go to the airport in Bangkok. All of a sudden a cloud
of black smoke and one of them headed into the water! We all
watched as the Navy rescued all hands and headed back. The
Captain came on the PA and announced that all were safe. The
cheers were quite loud. Then he announced that the bag pipes
were not recovered and the cheers were loud enough that everyone
back in Japan must have heard them.
We camped on the airfield and watched as the rest of the players
arrived. The crazy Airborne flew non-stop from the US and
jumped next to us. One tried to do the roman candle bit but
rode down with another crazy guy. A site to behold!
I always regret not getting "some"! Read the book "Hard
Corps" by Marco Martinez, Navy Cross recipient, and you'll know
what I mean. It's a short look into the War on Terror. (and my
grandson is mentioned)
I am proud to have served, if only beating a drum for three
years. Probably only 90% of us get "some". One of my Uncles got
"some" in 1921 and my grandson got enough "some" for all of us.
Sgt Vincent Meyers
Not easy then, not easy now
"Iwo Jima Today" with young Marines scrambling up the steep
dunes. The major difference between 1945 and today is that no
one was shooting at them!
Good pictures, good reminders! (See all the pictures)
65th Anniversary 2010. Check our web site at www.miltours.com
Semper Fidelis and ... Happy Birthday Marines!
Colonel Warren Wiedhahn USMC, (Ret)
Phony-Wannabee Caught And the Dumb-Azs
I'd like to think that I had a small part in catching this guy.
If anything it was a dumb-azs move on my part putting his
picture and story in an August newsletter complete with enough
red flags that I'm embarrassed. But my mistake did get the POW
Network involved and they are bulldogs on
exposing these guys. They worked with federal officials, and here
we are several months later with an arrest.
Wannabee Caught Article
Sgt "Dumb-Azs" Grit
Leatherneck Coffee Club
Leatherneck Coffee Club
Over The Muzzles
We arrived on Okinawa Christmas Eve 1966. We were confined to
the base, as we were to fly out to Da Nang the next day. We had
been paid recently and there didn't seem to be any reason to
take money (MPC) to Viet Nam so we hit the EM Club. Long neck
American beer and mixed drinks were 25 cents each, and as I
said, there wasn't much sense in taking money to Viet Nam.
We landed in DaNang totally in a daze. It was pouring rain. Mud
We were there as replacements. We were shipped off to Camp
Carroll to meet our unit. For several days we were the perimeter
guard for Camp Carroll. While there we helped ourselves to items
the Army had in abundance, but we were short on. We found a
couple of M-60s lying around. There were stacks of cases of C-
rations that got shorter. I happened to stroll by an officer's
tent and found cans of hamburgers and hot chocolate mix. We were
only there a couple of days. we left the area a little heavier
but better equipped. Next stop was Cam Lo, where we began to use
our finds. We got to check out our new air mattresses too.
While at Camp Carroll we visited the P.X. which was in a big
truck. We bought lots of U.S. govt. approved rubbers. The clerk
wondered where we were getting all of the action. We strung him
along, saying we had some bed warmers waiting. Actually we put
them over the muzzles of our weapons to keep the dirt out. They
fit the muzzle of the M-60 nicely.
Dinger 0331 Nam '66 7 '67
Invitation To Enlist
You know that famous saying that Ronald Reagan first uttered?
"Some people spend an entire lifetime wondering if they made a
difference in the world. But, the Marines don't have that
Ronald Reagan, President of the United States; 1985
Well it appears as if someone asked him to enlist. Read on...
Happy Birthday Marines
"Gunnery Sergeants" Grete and Liesl Hummer, currently
"stationed" at the National Naval Medical Center, are proud to
join GySgt Wade Cobar, MSgt Joseph Liptok (Ret) and Sgt Joseph
Bradley in wishing the United States Marine Corps and all
Marines a very Happy 234th Birthday (established at Tun Tavern
on November 10, 1775)!
OOHRAH, DEVIL DOGS!
To all my Marine Corps, fellows in arms, I wish you all a Happy
234th Marine Corps Birthday. Semper Fidelis. To all Veterans I
wish you an enjoyable and hearty Armistice Day.
The Old Gunny, Gordy
Point of interest, At our reunion Anti/Tank Co.5th Marines (
Korea ) Sept.18 at Quantico, National Museum, Marine Base. Going
thru the Museum I ran across a Picture that was taken Feb. 7
1953 of myself and my tank driver Norm Bodway carrying out one
of the 6 Marines we were able to help. It was at the Samichon
Valley also know as 76 alley
Norm Bodway Red shirt
Chuck Batherson tan Shirt
After 15 years of looking for just the right Eagle Globe and
Anchor tattoo and the right guy to do it, I found both. Dragon
Guy Tattoo in Greensboro N.C.
James W. Moore
He Bellowed...Don't you see?
Dear Sgt. Grit:
Holy cow! Last night I had the weirdest dream.
Chesty Puller was sitting on a leather sofa, as big as life,
puffing on a Cuban cigar and reading a copy of your catalog.
All of a sudden, he leapt out of his chair and said, "%%
I asked him what was wrong, and he bellowed:
"Don't you see!? Look on page 32. This license plate - item #
LM02 - What the %%##****&&@@?!!! They don't have it in black
with a silver eagle, globe, and anchor!"
I stepped forward and he thrust the catalog into my trembling
"SEE?! They only have it in red and gold. That is for puszies.
If I want it, Sgt. Grit needs to have it!"
I promised him that I would bring this to your attention, and he
slowly faded into the leather of the sofa and disappeared.
As you can well imagine, this was quite a traumatic experience,
and one that I would not care to repeat. He made it quite clear
that what he wants is a license plate with:
1. A black background, and
2. The eagle, globe, and anchor, and in silver.
Is there any chance you might be able to locate such an item in
the near future? I fear that I'll need to have an answer soon.
Thank you for your consideration -
Note: Cheri and all - the design is now available to order:
Heard Him Scream
This is Nile White the fading Gunner, and this morning I was
privileged to be visited by two comrades in arms. Two of the
finest equal to any U S combat Marine, two FMF Navy Hospital
Corpsmen both close to my age and both also fading also due to
the exposure to the chemical Agent Orange. And though a few
days early for our Marine Corps Birthday, but in honor of such
they brought a taste of the best of the best: for in the days of
combat and no booze there was always an enterprising field Doc.
With a jug of sick bay alcohol and a chess cloth to refine it
and then a triple shot of some un-sweetened grape fruit juice
and a shot of that in the freezing tundra of the northern parts
of old cold cold Korea would rejuvenate even the dead.
Well as we smacked our lips with just a drop and out of nowhere
and as close as my arm stood a Doc named Wentz. A little guy
like most Doc so they could hide behind a big old bar toting
marine. And he, Doc Wentzy, having made many a four or five man
patrol with us to scout the enemy forces on the next hill there
along the 38the parallel, well we heard him scream then the
sound of a short round from one of our so many short rounds from
the artillery valley two or three clicks behind our revetments.
And he looked up and said oh h&ll Nile, I am dead and he was for
a h&ll of a piece of shrapnel had tore all the way through his
body. He was a small dude but we took turns carrying him over
our shoulders back to our lines and straight to the tent sick
bay. And when we laid him down the company commander for his
name is burned into my mind for his dad was the commandant at
that time, yes shepherd.
How simple the passing of the palm from my your heart to a man
or woman in uniform. There can be no shame is such a gesture,
but want to make a heroes day pass him a palms up for sure to
all, especially Navy FMF field Docs. This 10 Nov. stand tall by
your brother Marines for you are also one of the chosen few. To
all Semper fi and especially to you Sgt grit the best thing
since a second serving of French toast.
Semper Fi Nile E White de Gunner
They'll Give You the Shirts off Their Backs
The 15th Annual Lt. Gen. Lewis B. "Chesty" Puller Marine Run was
held on November 14, 2008. The Marines Corps Detachment ran
from Fort Lee, through Puller's hometown of Saluda, and on to
Puller's grave site at Christ Church Parish in Virginia. After
a ceremony to pay tribute to one of the most decorated Marines
ever, they went to the Middlesex County Museum to see Puller's
medals and other memorabilia on display.
A museum volunteer said she really liked the t-shirts the
Marines were wearing for this special event. Sgt. Randy Banks
responded to her spoken interest by immediately removing his own
t-shirt and handing it over to her without a second thought. She
accepted it graciously and was surprised a few days later by
receiving several more of the Marine Run t-shirts in the mail,
enough for the rest of the museum staff.
The 16th Annual Chesty Puller Marine Run will be held on Friday,
November 13, 2009. The museum volunteers look forward to the
yearly visit from a group of dedicated, respectable, and
And I'd Been His
I served in Vietnam as a helicopter machine gunner and a proud
member of HMM-262 (66/67). I received a purple heart for my
efforts. When I returned from Vietnam, I had the feeling that
as an air wing Marine, I hadn't done as much as the grunts who
walked through the jungles, slept in the rain, etc. I finally
worked with a grunt who was in Vietnam at the same time I was
there. We became good friends and I confided in him one day
that I somehow felt like I should have done more because I
didn't have the combat experiences he had. He looked at me for
a minute and then told me that he'd always felt the same way
about me. He said that he felt lucky being on the ground and
that his heroes were the guys who flew in the helicopters to
bring in supplies, reinforcements or to carry wounded Marines
out during firefights. He said he'd never be able to do my job.
He'd been my "real Marine" and I'd been his.
The bottom line is this. We are all United States Marines. We
go where we are sent and we do whatever it is we need to do for
Corps and Country. We are all trained to be Marines. Rather
than worry that you didn't do "your part," be content that had
you been sent, you would have served your Corps well.
I've tried to get back in so I could go to Afghanistan or Iraq
but, at the age of 63, the recruiters tell me that I am too old.
My son, L/Cpl. Jamie L. Nix, is now on Okinawa and I guess he'll
have to carry on in my place. Semper Fi!
Daniel L. Nix
Sgt. of Marines
1964 - 1967
I keep reading all these stories about getting on with your life
after finishing your tour and getting on with being a civilian.
I do not know if I read this or heard it but here is something
that I think explains it best.
They say that after being discharged from the Air Force it takes
about a month to get over ever being in. A soldier finally gets
used to being a civilian after about a year. It takes longer
for a Sailor about a year and a half. But you never get over
being a Marine.
Answer these questions honestly and you will see what I mean.
Do you still march in step with other guys when walking? Do you
still blouse your shirt? Look at your gig line is it straight,
I bet it is. Do you shave every day? I bet your shoes are
shined aren't they. Do you still go to the head? Do you still
refer to the floor as the deck and your bed as a rack? When you
make your bed does it have hospital corners? When you hunt do
you take a gun or a rifle? Do you stand when the National Anthem
is played, better yet do you stand when the Marine Corps Hymn is
played? Do you check your clothes for Irish pennants?
Do you gaze in pride at every young Marine you see? But when do
talk to them do you check out their shoes, gig line, Irish
pennants, and whether they shave and have a good haircut?
You have never been a Marine if you don't do at least half of
Jim Grimes Sgt USMC a long time ago.
GoDaddy and Sgt Grit...Kinda', Sorta'
Bob Parsons, CEO of GoDaddy, is wearing our Semper Fi t-shirt in
his "09/04/09 - episode #29" video on his blog.
You can also see the GoDaddy's USMC Birthday Tribute
1941 White Model M-2 Halftrack, In Memory
Attached our photos of my companies (North American Rescue Inc.)
fully restored and running, 1941 White Model M-2 Halftrack it is
dedicated to the memory of Sgt Robert A. Owen MOH (Posthumous)
USMC a native of Greenville, SC. Thought your readers might like
to see some pictures. Happy Veterans Day!
Tom Eagles HMCM/USN Ret.
North American Rescue Inc.
No One Raised Their Hand
In response to Brian Waters in the 05 November 09 news letter. I
enlisted in 1979 and most if not all of my drill instructors
were straight out of Vietnam, Out of all the customs and
history we were taught the thing that sticks out the most is
them teaching us to never let our fellow Marine down and
absolutely no one gets left behind, These guys were hard and if
you did something stupid and got beat around the neck and
shoulders then you learned a lesson and moved on.
The drill instructors did not beat us because they were sadistic
or got off on it, They just found a way to teach you lessons
very fast and you learned well. During my time from 1979 to 1983
we were told that we were part of the new Corps, Because the
Corps was in a transitional phase, coming out of Vietnam. Me
personally I am glad I had war vets to learn from. I see what's
going on with the Army and the stress cards in recruit training
and it scares the h&ll out of me. What's little Johnny going to
do hold up his stress card when the Taliban start to overrun his
position? I mean nothing against the Army but who thinks this
sh!t up. We had a few hard cases in our platoon during boot and
it wasn't always the DI who taught valuable lessons, Lights out
and bar of soap in your towel will teach even the most dense of
recruits how to execute the field stripping and re assembly of
the M-16a2 rifle at warp speed with 100% accuracy.
At the rifle range we had a visit from a major who after he made
the drill instructors leave the area asked if any recruits had
been physically touched by any drill instructor. No one raised
their hand, So he made us line up outside the drill instructors
office and talked to each of us one on one In the office.
Evidently one recruit said he had been hit and we lost one of
our best drill instructors during snap in week. The only good
thing from that is we found out who the milk toast was. Enough
said. Marines are a different breed of animal and cannot be put
in the same category as a Army soldier that has his training
dictated by mothers of America, If America wants to win battles
then we need to do away with stress cards in every branch of
JMA. Corporal of Marines
Semper Fi from the Lava Dog's
To J.L. Morris.
Most of the 7th Marines were reserves at the Reservoir. Many on
Fox Hill had never been to boot camp. Had that hill not held you
and I would still be there 6 ft under Korean soil. Whoever makes
the comments you refer to have never had a shot fired at them.
Ray L. Walker
To JR Morris- Don't EVER feel you're less of a MARINE because
you were a reserve! So you didn't go through boot camp. Your
boot camp was in the hills of Korea, we all know that. Anyone
with any doubts, please read "Retreat H&ll. Many of the Marines
at the Chosin Reservoir were reservists. Some had been to boot
camp, some had not, all performed as Marines have since 1776.
Goodnight Chesty wherever you are.
CPL Dan Corum
A rose by any other name would smell as sweet". A Marine is a
Marine no matter what the letter designation is after USMC. I
think we will always find people who have their own private
hang-ups, and as far as I'm concerned it should be their problem
and not yours.
I very much can relate to what you are saying as when I joined
the Marines in 1965, I joined under the designation of "program
J" which was a two year active service program with four years
of inactive (reserve) service. When I got out of "schools
battalion" I was sent to my duty station as an 0141
(administrative clerk). When my first rating period (at that
duty station) came up I was called into the Captains Office and
he asked me who I had "pissed off". I had been given an
extremely low mark out of schools battalion.
It turned out (I was told) that not everyone agreed with the
"program J" two year enlistment and a low rating was given to
those who enlisted under that program by some administrators.
The first I heard of the low rating was when I was asked about
it. The idea behind it was that it would be very difficult to
overcome the low rating (within two years) and get out with an
"Honorable Discharge". The choice would be to ship over to
overcome the low rating or to accept a "general discharge".
Fortunately for me the people in charge saw the injustice of
this. I would like to think that I earned every high rating I
got from that point on and no doubt their confidence in me drove
me to do the best I could. I did in fact receive high enough
ratings to overcome the low one and was eligible for (and did
receive) an "Honorable Discharge".
The other designation that was looked at by others as a "softer
position" was the 0141 (administrative position) which back then
was affectionately referred to as "Remington Raiders". Again
this problem belonged to others. The truth was that we we're
trained with the same weapons as everyone else, we stood the
same inspections as everyone else, and we walked guard duty the
same as everyone else. The only difference I could see was that
we started work before everyone else and we were done when the
1st Sgt. said we were done (and that was usually long after
everyone else). The only other thing that was different for us
was that we had to take a five hundred pound safe with us when
we "pulled up stakes".
The Marine Corps was and still is a very important part of my
life. It took the kid out of me and it gave me a discipline and
a tenaciousness that I would have never acquired without it.
Put any letter you want after USMC (J or R or whatever), I still
am and always will be a MARINE, and in my book so are you J.R.
D.J. Berglund 2163043 Cpl USMC (1965 - 1967)
More Reservists Stories
No Apology Was Necessary
Happy Marine Corps Birthday. On Saturday 11/07/09 my fiancee and
I attended the Marine Corps Birthday Ball at Camp Pendleton. The
keynote speaker was Major General R. L. Mills CG 1st Marine Div
FMF. In his address he took a moment to apologize to the Vietnam
vets present for the treatment (or lack thereof) we got when we
came home. Being the Marine that I am, I took it upon myself to
go over to the CG when he finished and told him no apology was
necessary though greatly appreciated. We were, after all,
Marines, we did our job came home and took it on the chin
because "we are Marines."
A few minutes later a young Lt came over (who initially was at
the table we were escorted to) and said "Major General Mills
would like to request your fiancee and your presence at his
table to dine with him and his wife."
Needless to say my girlfriend's response was what did you say to
him? My reply was, "we were Marines (ughrahh)." We graciously
thank the General, had a great birthday meal and in addition
Major General Hoffman was the ball chairman and my former CG
when I was a snot nose recruit at MCRD Parris Island 1971, so I
got to meet him as well. And we reminisced about PI in 71, 2 and
3 battalion legal holds that brought the press, over the deaths
of two recruits and the trouble he got in with the press when he
coined the phrase "We never promised you a rose garden"
As the night closed my fiancee was presented with the beautiful
floral center piece by Maj General Mills. Again this was
Debbie's first Marine Corps Ball and truly for me a Marine Corps
Birthday both she and I will always remember.
Ed Anthony former Sgt/USMC/Viet Nam Vet.
Grit, I travel a lot for work and I am truly amazed at the
young Marines, I meet in airports, all over our wonderful
country. They have the same pride, same "swagger", same
confidence, that we had when we were in the Corps. I have
talked with some of them and say I'm one of the "Old Corps",
they respond, no Sir, you are a Marine, just a time change. I
laugh at that.
We talk about boot camp and the differences in the USMC from the
1960's to 2009 and it is amazing to me that the Corps has not
changed. Boot camp is longer now, we had 56 days and they have
12 weeks. They are anxious to hear how the Corps was in the 60's
and most of the laughs we have is to see that not much has
changed. They do not have JOB inspections now. When I mention
the JOB, Junk on the Bunk, they look at me like I am telling
them about the "Holy Grail". I laugh and say, that was a
tradition that I am glad has ended. It is still the USMC and
these young men and women are carrying on the tradition that was
started, Nov 10, 1775.
I try to speak to as many as I can, and I ask myself, was I
ever that young, and slim ?
Time has passed and most of us are not in our Boot camp shape,
but we are Marines and we need to thank the young ones who are
carrying on the tradition of our beloved Corps.
SSGT of Marines
1966-1969 and 1974-1980.
You are "Old Corps" when you can tell another Marine with both a
straight face and conviction that you've "got more time in the
chow line than he(or she) has in the Corps!"
Sgt T Gardiner USMCR
More Old Corps Stories
From Polio To 1st Lt
In early June, 1941 I had me tonsils nearly rupture and I had to
have emergency surgery. Ten days later I was back at the
hospital with paralytic polio (it was the wrong time of the
year.) By 1942 I was totally paralyzed and the doctor told my
mother I would more than likely die soon.
It was at this time I heard on the radio that the 1st Marine
Division had landed on Guadalcanal. I was only six, but
realized that I wanted to be a Marine, even though I had never
seen or heard of one (I lived in the blue Mountains of NE
Oregon.) I also decided the Corps would not take me if I was in
bed. I then spent the next 11 years learning to walk and
building up my strength.
In 1953 I enlisted in the Marine Corps Active Reserves in
Philadelphia, PA. I was attending Villanova University at the
time and my Recruiter told me we need officers as much as
anybody. I attended OTC in my summers and drills each week,
raising from Pvt. to Sgt. (E4) In June 1957 I had the proudest
day of my life when I graduated in dress whites and pinned on
the bars of a 2nd Lieutenant. We had lost 56% of those who had
originally started training with me.
Next came 3-57 Basic School and then on to Del Mar for Tank
School. Then back to Lejeune and Bravo Company of the 2nd Tank
Battalion. I was lucky to get a Platoon Sgt. named Gunny John
Harrington. The first day I took him aside and told him he had
two jobs, one run the platoon, and second to train me to be a
d*mn good tank officer, then when I felt ready, I would take
He did a great job and soon I was ready. We were on independent
duty, assigned to various Infantry Battalions, for the next 14
months and I was gone overseas. Then it was to several schools
and finally our Battalion XO, Maj. Malcom, USMC, went to DC to
check and make sure I would be around for a while since I had
been gone so much. With the assurances of at least another
year, he returned and I was assigned as CO of H&S Co., 2nd
About then Cuba started heating up with Fidel threatening to cut
the water off to Gitmo. Our entire Tank Battalion shipped out,
just before I received orders to the 3rd Tank Battalion, 3rd
Mar. Div. (HQ, USMC said I had been Stateside long enough and
needed to see some overseas duty even though I had actually been
aboard the Base for less than 90 days.) I had just finished my
inventory and signed for the gear of the Company, when the
orders arrived. We loitered off Cuba's coast for a few days,
then went on to Viegas, PR to unlimber stiff muscles. I was
there but a short time when I flew out on an R4Q back to Lejeune
and then on to Okinawa on a DC6 with stops in Hawaii, Wake, Guam
and finally Okinawa.
In June, 1959, I arrived at the 3rd Tank Battalion and was
assigned as XO of Alpha Co. The Battalion Commander was Lt.
Col. David M. Foos, USMC. About 6 months into the assignment, I
was transferred to the 3rd AT Battalion as their Maintenance
Officer. Here, my CO was Lt. Col. Guildo. S. Codispotti III,
USMC. I was in this capacity for the rest of my tour of 22
months (Yes, not 18, but 22 thanks to Sec. of Defense McNamera).
Then it was back to Quantico where I was assigned as CO, HQ
Company Main Side. I was released from active duty in October,
1961. I then learned how to fly and spent the next 20 odd years
flying until 1988 when I was diagnosed with Post Polio Syndrome.
The Dr.s said I would be back on crutches or in a wheel chair
within 2 years. One thing the Corps taught me is perseverance,
and that you never give up. It has been 21 years, but I am
still not giving in and I walk several miles a week with my wife
and my Siberian Husky.
I am proud to drive a car with a front bumper plate that says I
am a veteran of the United States Marine Corps, and my back
license plate holder says US Marine Corps and on the back
windows are the stickers of the 2nd and 3rd Div. I also proudly
wear a hat that has the emblem and emblazoned on the brim is
"The Few, The Proud." I also have a vest that displays the
patches of the 2nd and 3rd Tank Battalions. I cannot count the
number of men who have approached me and said, "Semper Fi" and I
reply "Ooorah." Then we exchange units we were in and share the
pride of belonging to the proudest and greatest brotherhood in
the world, THE UNITED STATES MARINE CORPS."
A very proud former Marine.
1st. Lt. Edward L. Dodd, USMC 073558
We have finished filming Chosin and we are now in the editing
room with the project. We ended up interviewing 184 vets in 27
cities across 14 states, and our goal is to release the film in
conjunction with the 60th Anniversary of the Korean War next
This has been the first film and oral history project of such
magnitude to capture this vital piece of Marine Corps and
American Military History. It has been an honor to be a part of
the project and we could not have done it without your support-
many thanks to all of you.
We have posted a trailer for the film on our www.frozenchosin.com
On 10 Nov 2009 the Bethlehem (#284) and Lehigh Valley (#296)
detachments of the Marine Corps League teamed up to celebrate
the 234th Birthday of our Corps. We had a cake cutting ceremony
at VFW Post 13. Pictured here are myself Howard Cooper
Commandant Lehigh Valley Det, LCpl Eric Shampine born in 1987
(the youngest), Marine Russell Gross, veteran of Guadalcanal and
born in 1915 (the oldest), and Vince Poandl IV, Commandant of
Bethlehem Det. A good time was had by all and the cake was
delicious. Hope you and yours had a good time as well in OK.
The Marines have thousands of psychiatrists.
We call them Staff NCO's.
God bless every one of them.
Sgt. Grit...First things first! OORAH! In response to TOP
Railsback question re the Eddystone, It was made By Remington at
the Eddystone Arsenal, located south of Philadelphia..It was
commonly known as an American Enfield and was carried by about
75 percent of the Doughboys. It is a very good rifle, but does
have its' quirks... I have one beside me as we speak!
Semper Fi, GySgt Ken Gearhart USMC Retired 54-75
I would like to thank you for my combat vet. t-shirt...One of my
friends asked me why I wear MARINE CORPS SHIRTS and HATS? I knew
he had never been in the military, so I asked him if he knew
what (ESPRIT DE CORPS) was? He said no, so I told him, there was
no use me trying to explain it to him, because he'd never
understand...I did tell him (ONCE a MARINE ALWAYS a
MARINE)... Thank you again for the t-shirt.
Former SSGT. RJC
I love every single Marine I ever meet or will ever meet.
Truly, he is my brother.
That brotherhood is what makes the Marine Corps what it is....
the UNITED STATES MARINE CORPS!
(now all you fools out there going on about old Corps, new Corps....)
DROP and give me PUSH-UPS 'til the AMBULANCE COMES!
Michael J Nichols
Sgt. of Marines
Vietnam - '69-'70
and STILL PROUD!
I love your newsletter. It helps me keep in touch. I recently
moved to St. John USVI and this will be my first anniversary
away from Marines I know. I have five more days to meet some so
I can celebrate properly. If that doesn't happen I will
celebrate solo and toast to those who gave all they had. I
appreciate all you do for those who are still doing all they
Sgt. Bruce (Waldo) Holden
(on temporary assignment to the 1st civ div, until that tim