Aug 1970: Got to Nam, immediately assigned to 1st Recon, two weeks recon training at Monkey Mountain, then assigned to a team.

On day one I could tell the jarheads were leery of this new, untested doc in their midst and were warily checking me out. On day two I walk into our hootch and my team leader is standing there with a couple minor cuts on his abdomen and a seriously deep cut on his forearm.

“What the h-ll did you do”, says I incredulously. “Had a knife fight”, says he. “Why?” “For the fun of it” he blithely replied. This confirmed all my suspicions about Marines. I could only shake my head and mutter, “They’re all nuts!”

Knowing he could be busted in rank for this stupidity, and I wasn’t about to rat him out, I snuck some suture material out of the BAS. Eight deep stitches later, I had gained a lot of respect and the team’s demeanor towards me took a large turn. Incidentally, he took the sutures without benefit of anesthetic, which further cemented my suspicions.

I still do not understand Marines, but Lordy I love them. We had our share of “interesting” patrols, but they got me home safe and sound. However, I still wonder if any of them knew my first name – it was always Doc, Squidley, Anchor Clanker, P-ker Checker, et cetera – but never…

Larry Grimm
“If pain is good, why do I carry morphine?”

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


  • John Engel

    I don’t believe that any marine would want to ever go into a patrol or combat without a corpsman along. I also have never seen a corpsman pay for his own drinks at the bar. They sure are welcome at any marine functions. Even now should I see one at a restaurant wearing a cover saying so,I will get the waitress to give me the bill , pay without him knowing & Just they thanks as we walk by.

  • James Hornsey

    Semper Fi Squidly Pecker Checker……..Without you and your brother “Docs” a lot of us wouldn’t be here today to write and say THANK YOU and GOD BLESS YOU. Ours was HM3 Gene “Doc” Brown with Mike 3/1 CUPP in 1970 RVN. Wish I could find him to say Thank You.

  • Rob Walters

    Like the one about the P..checker and the Marine on a layover at O’Hare. Navy Corpsman have a special place for Marines. I have known them. Only we can call them by that name so nobody else is allowed. The corpsman have great courage like the medic in Hacksaw Ridge. God bless bless them all. Semper Fi, Rob

  • (LCpl) J.Turner U.S.M.C.


  • Ronald Duke

    Simper Fi Squidly…you made one wrong state ment when you said Marines are all crazy which is a true statement, now that being said you were and are still are one of us. So suck it up doc and be proud you are and will always be one of us crazy people.

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