Never Forget Them

Never Forget Them

Picture taken on graduation day for platoon 374 in back of the barracks on the third battalion drill field with the mess hall in the background. Left is SDI Gunnery Sergeant Kearney. Purple Heart from a shot in the stomach on Saipan. A model for R Lee Ermey. To his right is Staff Sgt. Wright JDI, Purple Heart in Korea, heavy weight boxing champ for the Marines in 1956. Missing in the shot is Sgt. Murphy the other JDI. Never forget them or platoon 374.

Norm Spilleth

Sgt Grit wants to hear from you! Leave your comments below or submit your own story!


  • Rodriguez john

    I was with hotel 2/8 reported to the reg. In aug of 64 right out of itr Pendleton. We had about 30days of training getting ready for steel pike 1. But I was assigned to ship plt. ,once aboard the uss gaudacanl are job was to bring equipment up from the hanger bay to flight then hook up to helo.i remember the crash. I saw when the body’s were being checked by the doctors.(bad) .latter after the op liberty in canes for a fewdays then blt ‘s liberty was secured. Problems thenback to the states Christmas and new years then the med apa frances marion. Then the 1st shirt had us sign volunteer chits for south east asia so there was a problem that need to be looked into and the rest is history. Got out at the end of my for years. But 19 mo latter back in and yup back to south east asia. Retired 1984 gunny camp Pendleton. 0311,8511,3051. One name that I remember was my bunky pfc perice duckworth. Oh yeah h2/8 1st plt 1st sqd aromatic rifleman. I am glad to have heard from grunts of steepike. OOhrah semper fi. Gunny Rod

  • Geary McCleery

    Please 391, San Diego, 1 Oct 1964-Dec 1964. Semper Fi, once a Marine always a Marine!

  • Wm. Mcgrath

    Well it looks like we’re having an internet reunion.I too was on Steel Pike F-2-8 3rd Plt. from 9/63 to 9/65 also on the Guadalcanal I was in the second wave of choppers. Went just to the left of the crash site. Saw a main rotor slowly turning with sun light glinting off it and smoke rising near it. Just assumed somebody popped a smoke grenade to mark a landing zone.Didn’t find out till the next day what had happened.Some of our sick,lame and lazy that didn’t make the Op. helped to put the bodies in the freezer.They picked the Guadalcanal because being the newest ship in that makeshift convoy it had the best refrigeration unit. Mr.Fellman can you verify that a chopper on the Okinawa was accidentally pushed off the elevator as the flight deck crew was trying to get all the choppers into the hanger bay prior to us running into that storm off the coast of Portugal ? We then pulled liberty in Breast, France & Portsmouth, England.At the end of the cruise we heard a total of 19 guys died, Sailor & Marine. Including a sailor on the Guadalcanal who was last seen dumping garbage off the fantail between 20:00 & 21:00 hrs. wasn’t missed till roll call the next morning. Fell- pushed ? Never knew.

  • Robert Atherton

    Went through PISC 62 years ago. Sorry to say I can’t remember my DI’S names. But I do remember they were tough.

  • Louis Castello

    Frank I was on that cruise with you, weapons plt. M/3/8 do you remember the helicopters crashed while in Spain.

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