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Pirate Hunting Fleet In 1823

Pirate Hunting Fleet In 1823

Earlier this month while vacationing in Key West, FL and wearing my new ‘Semper Fi Fund’ shirt my wife and I came upon the Truman Annex and Naval Air Station. The plaque on the wall to my right reads:

October 1, 1977

The first United States Marines arrived in Key West with Commodore David Porter’s Pirate Hunting Fleet in 1823.

The Corps has played a vital role in the life of this island both in war and in peace intervals since that time. From 1939 until September 30, 1977 Marines were on continuous service at the United States Naval Base and Naval Air Station here. The city of Key West salutes the:

United States Marine Corps

Mark Hite, S/Sgt
RVN 1966-67, ’69-’70

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Daniel Foley, Sgt, 1963-1970 - July 10, 2020

I was the “Duty Music” at the barracks in 61-63(?). Also on Guard Duty on base, Annex, and Air Station. Bought my first car (1959 Chev Bel Aire). Lousy bugler but great duty. Remember “Cuban Crisis” and Running Guard.
Great duty.

William Hennessey, MSGT (Ret.), USMC/USA - July 10, 2020

Hello Mark, I was stationed in the Key West Marine Barracks from May thru October 1977. The Marine Barracks caught fire and burned to the ground the August before we left Key West. The Navy and Marine team got us squared away fast. We were in another barracks that afternoon, up and running. When I arrived, I believed that I would be there for three years. Surprise, 6 Months later we deactivated, most went to Okinawa, some to RECON, and the Nam Vets went to other Marine Barracks’. I went to COMM Company, 3DFSSG, Camp Foster. My fellow Key West Marines were a great bunch. I was surprised when I was told by many Sailors and civilians that they would miss us. I hope to return in 2017, 40 years, wow. Semper Fi, Bill Hennessey, MSGT (Ret.), USMC/USA.

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