I Am A Firm Believer
Dear Sgt. Grit,
I joined the Corps in Nov. 1957, sent to Yemassee, SC until we had enough recruits [not the word the Sgt used} to form a platoon, then over to Parris Island, of which he informed us, there are two ways to leave this Island, one is to graduate, the other is in a pine box, I chose the first choice!
Some of my memories from over 50 years ago, My Platoon # was 303, two of my DI’s that I remember were SSgt. Kahle and Sgt McFarlane, there were no yellow footprints as I remember, but, there were Women Marines that we could see drill and the DI reminded us, there is miles and miles of that stuff and we weren’t going to get an inch of it. We did get to see what was claimed to be the first ever snow fall in SC, but it didn’t get rid of the sandfleas, I still remember my serial # 1682617 and after I graduated, the older Marines wanted to know if that was the national debt. haha, I am a firm believer of the motto “Once a Marine, Always A Marine”, the Corps teaches you principles and values, that you will never forget!
I was in the Corps for 4 years active, and 2 years inactive. My closest encounter with being in a war, was, while stationed at Marine Barracks, Newport, RI, we all had to pack our seabags and go on stand-by to board a ship, but that didn’t happen, One other highlight was, in making a Mediterranean cruise in 1960 aboard the USS Vermillion AKA 107 with the 1st Bn.8th Marines, I loved this cruise, even though we did landings on every island we came to. the liberty made up for this!
I want to commend you and your newsletter for bringing these memories to life, although, some of the articles bring a tear to my eyes occasionally.
Thanks to each and every Marine, for keeping and maintaining our Freedom, they sure have my respect and admiration!
Semper Fi and God Bless
L/Cpl. Stanley A. Shepherd 1682617