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Dear Sgt. Grit,
In your 28 Aug newsletter you ran two photos of an AV8b Harrier that were submitted by GySgt Eddie Puente with VMA-311 Ordnance Division, currently deployed to Al Asad, Anbar province, Iraq. My son, PFC Bryant Combs, is also with VMA-311 Ord. Div., and he had previously sent me a picture of the same bird with an honored guest. At least part of the reason the jet was painted in its current scheme was to commemorate the February ’08 visit to MCAS Yuma by (former) Marine/NASA Astronaut/Ohio Senator John Glenn and his wife Annie (notice the name painted beneath the canopy in this photo). Senator Glenn flew with VMA-311 in Korea. It’s comforting to know that the Marines are putting the Harrier to good use rather than saving it as a display piece.
P.S. I may not look so tough, but I raised a US Marine.