General Victor Krulak

I was visiting with the Gunny at the Recruiting Station in Flagstaff the other day, and he handed me the article that spoke of the passing of General Victor Krulak at age 95. Tears came to my eyes, as I recalled this unique, and most impressionable officer I have ever met. I had served as a Drill Instructor from 1957-1959, and at the end of my tour on the Drill field, I was given an assignment to Sea School at MCRD, San Diego, as an Instructor.

General Krulak became Base Commander, replacing General Thomas Wornham, at about the same time, and I was honored one hot, sunny day when a Lieutenant, approached some Sea School Students, in “modified Blues”,I was drilling on the Grinder that hot summers day, and I halted the troops.

The Lieutenant told us “the General wanted to let us know we were a fine looking group of Marines, and he enjoyed watching us drill “from Building 31, where his Headquarters were located! We were a proud group to receive his comments.

Later, while teaching in a classroom setting, General Krulak would occasionally visit our school and sit in on our presentations, never wanting to acknowledge his visit nor interrupt our classes.

In 1959, I felt a hand on my shoulder while visiting his headquarters, and he paused to say “Merry Xmas to you and your family, Sgt. Stauffer”, and I was honored “always to be in his presence!” I consider General Victor Krulak to be the epitome of Marine Officers, and I can visualize he and General Lewis Burwell Puller standing at the Pearly Gates, where Marines will be greeting the Army and the Navy as they visit Heaven’s scenes.

I pray that I’ll have a position in that Guard Detachment!

Former Sgt of Marines
Richard A. Stauffer 51/60

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9 thoughts on “General Victor Krulak”

  1. Rich’s story also reminded me when I had met the General at Iwakuni, Japan. I was in the honor guard and when he passed in review, he asked the acting First Sergeant, “Is this the man”. I wanted to shrink to nothing. Prior to this I had spoken to the acting First Sergeant that I volunteered for Vietnam and I was “way-laid” in Iwakuni, plus I felt I had been passed over in rank. Acting First Sergeant and I had a good repore and I admired his advice. Well after General V. Krulak asked me to confirm what I had told the acting First Sergeant, his friend from prior tours, I acknowledged that I did. I belive the very next day I was promoted to Lance Corporal and sent to Vietnam…..1964……..I agree with Rich, General V. Krulak and General “Chesty ” Puller will be guarding those gates! Semper Fi! Paul Annetts, former Corporal of Marines, 1961-1967 & 1980.

  2. Work for Lt Gen Krulak when he was the CG FMFPac in Hawaii. No finer officer, in my mind, in the USMC at the time. Semper Fi, Brute.

  3. Few people know that General Victor Krulak was responsible for designing our beach landing craft which he designed after watching troops land in a battle between Chinese and Japanese soldiers at war. He was also hugely responsible for the USMC staying as a separate fighting force. Both the Army and the Navy were trying to absorb the Marines into their ranks and completely abolish the United States Marine Corps. I am a Vietnam Marine Vet and one of my bases was in Chu Lai, named after General Krulak. Chu Lai was the General’s Chinese name. Want to learn more Marine history and more about General Krulak, read the book BRUTE, The Life of Victor Krulak, U.S. Marine. The author is Robert Coram. Matt E. Valenzuela, Sgt., USMC

  4. In 1961, I was A Company, Comm Elect Schools Bn.,Guidon and Gen Krulak came up to me and at 6″4″ I made the mistake of looking down at the General. Never again have I look down at anyone. Three years later when I was with 2nd Bn 1st Mar going through cold weather training at Fuji. The General came in and stopped his convoy and came back to say hello to me and called me by name, He did the same when I was in country with his son Charles. A true Marine. It was honor to serve with him.

  5. I do NOT have any stories that pertain to the elder Gen. Krulak, but I do have this story about his son. It was several years after the end of “Gulf War I”, I had the occasion to listen to a story as relayed by General CHARLES C. Krulak, the son of General Victor H. “Brute” Krulak. Gen. Charles Krulak was at the time our 31st Commandant of the Marine Corps and was the Guest Speaker at a reunion (I think) of World War II and Korean Marines in the Quantico area. Well, after speaking to this group of ‘Elder Marines’, one of them came up to Gen. Charles C. Krulak and commented that he “just knew that “Brute” would make Commandant one day and by the way, you’re looking as young as ever!” As a side note, I do believe that Gen. Charles C. Krulak went UNDEFEATED during his college career as a wrestler and IS in the National Wrestling Hall of Fame.

  6. Just before starting Electronic Schools (Dec.1961) for 33 weeks in MCRD San Diego I was to assigned Mess Duty for a few weeks. The mess hall was large and we feed a lot of Marines. Once in a while Gen. Krulak would come in & go through the mess line maybe sample the food, but he always sat down at a table of Marines and talked to his Marines. I believe that I read the General would also occasionally get up before the sun dressed in utilities and walk through the Quonset huts in the Boot Camp area….. just checking things out in the early morning. Semper Fi Marines!!

  7. General Karla gave me Purple Heart in Hawaii in 1966 on my way back home .only had 1set utilities to ware he never said a word about it I had a picture of it but over the I lost the picture. Nick Tackacs Sgt. USMC

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