I was visiting with the Gunny at the Recruiting Station in Flagstaff the other day, and he handed me the article that spoke of the passing of General Victor Krulak at age 95. Tears came to my eyes, as I recalled this unique, and most impressionable officer I have ever met. I had served as a Drill Instructor from 1957-1959, and at the end of my tour on the Drill field, I was given an assignment to Sea School at MCRD, San Diego, as an Instructor.
General Krulak became Base Commander, replacing General Thomas Wornham, at about the same time, and I was honored one hot, sunny day when a Lieutenant, approached some Sea School Students, in “modified Blues”,I was drilling on the Grinder that hot summers day, and I halted the troops.
The Lieutenant told us “the General wanted to let us know we were a fine looking group of Marines, and he enjoyed watching us drill “from Building 31, where his Headquarters were located! We were a proud group to receive his comments.
Later, while teaching in a classroom setting, General Krulak would occasionally visit our school and sit in on our presentations, never wanting to acknowledge his visit nor interrupt our classes.
In 1959, I felt a hand on my shoulder while visiting his headquarters, and he paused to say “Merry Xmas to you and your family, Sgt. Stauffer”, and I was honored “always to be in his presence!” I consider General Victor Krulak to be the epitome of Marine Officers, and I can visualize he and General Lewis Burwell Puller standing at the Pearly Gates, where Marines will be greeting the Army and the Navy as they visit Heaven’s scenes.
I pray that I’ll have a position in that Guard Detachment!
Former Sgt of Marines
Richard A. Stauffer 51/60