Gitmo 1966

I was in Gitmo the summer of ’66 when one of our Marines shot and killed a Cuban sentry who was climbing over the fence. Castro gave us 12 days to get out or he said he would “blow us out.” By the time it got down to the second day there was a USN fleet just off the coast with a Russian fleet right behind them. It was kept quiet because of the turmoil between the “anti-establishment” movement, race and women’s rights movements and the anti- Vietnam protests. Does ANYONE recall being there then? …You still out there “T”?
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15 comments


  • Wayne Beverly USMC Sgt-Vietnam 1966/67

    Stirs a vague memory that I may have heard of it. I didn’t get much outside rumors summer ’66. Summer of ’66 for me was filled with putting together the T/O, T/E for the coming mount out of 2/26. Basically locking myself in a room with an armed guard outside the door, escorting me to put the work away in safe and use the head or what ever, preparations for the mount out and leaving via ship in Aug. I didn’t join the anti-establishment movement, race and women’s rights movements and anti-Vietnam protests (VVAW) until ’69.

    You ever think that maybe that Cuban sentry just wanted asylum?


  • Roger D. Stewart

    I was with 2/8 ( I think ) in ’68 when we left Moore Head City headed for Gitmo. We had a Russian Sub follow us all the way. Leaving the ship we were on by going down the Rope Net ( forget what it’s called ), the waves were very high & moving the Papa Boats up & down against the ship. Our Bn. Co. had ordered us to climb down the ” Ropes ” but the Captain of the ship Instructed him that while he & his Marines was aboard HIS SHIP, HE WAS THE RANKING OFFICER IN COMMAND & he wouldn’t let us go over board until the waves settled down. First time ever I saw a Bn. Co. ” huff & puff “. Once @ Gitmo we had to run drills early every morning into the hills & man our post. One of my Buddies told me one morning while we were in the hills on guard to yell something ( in Spanish ) to a Cuban Soldier we saw. When I did. the Cuban shot @ me. Later found out what I yelled out was ” kiss my a– . That’s the only time I ever heard a shot fired from either side in my entire nine months there., though many other incidents happened.


  • !st Lt. Edward L. Dodd, USMC, forever

    In early January,1961 I was Platoon Leader of 1st Plt, B Co, 2nd Tank Bn. We sailed from Moorhead City aboard the LSD Hermitage and headed south. The next day I walked out on the deck and saw Navy ships as far as I could see. About 10:00 hours I was flown to the Boxer, the Command ship. There the Bn. CO open sealed orders and read where we were going into Gitmo, set up a base of supply, then attack inland cutting Cuba in half. Then the 2nd Air Born would drop in on one end and the 2nd Mar Div would come in on the other end. We were to be the anvil and they were the hammers. Whole operation was to take 90 days.
    We were to start off loading at 03:00 when Pres. Eisenhower sent a message to hold the landing and we sailed around Cuba for 5 days driving Castro into a frenzy. Then we sailed to Vieques, off loaded and spent a month while Castro still ranted that if the Marines landed, 20,000 gringos would die.
    After a month a plane landed and we had new orders. We went back into the back door of Gitmo, and landed, setting up defensive positions around the water point (Then the water point was of base and Castro wanted to cut off the water to force the Americans to leave.) With a reinforced Infantry Co, backed up by a heavy section of tanks, the water point was maintained in our control and Castro decided to leave us alone. This is just a memory of long ago.


  • David Hennion

    Might of herd somthing about it I was with 8th Marines in 68


  • Ron Schroeder

    We in Bravo Batt’y, 1st Bn, 11th Marines, 105 howitzers, flew to Cuba in Oct, ’62 to support 1st Marines in ‘The Blockade’. After about 6 weeks of ‘saber-rattling’ Kruschev’s pecker went limp and he reversed his stance om Cuba. Castro was infuriated and wanted to launch a land attack against Gitmo. Someone convinced him not to. We folded our tents, boarded the good ship Iwo Jima and sailed back to California. I still reminisce online to worn out old vets that served with me in that campaign. I am quite surprised to learn of this incident in ’66. To this day, no one has EVER mentioned this conflict. Perhaps it was overshadowed by the ‘hot’ incident in Sant Doming in 1965 where 2nd Mar Div had to slap some of Castro’s misfits back to Cuba. Note, I’m only commenting because the ‘Gitmo ’66’ incident is a complete surprise to me. Semper Fi, y’all.


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