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Sgt Grit Marine Corps Newsletter - May 23, 2002


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OLD 1950 FORD...............................................
 In 1954 myself (Cpl Detheridge) and my lifelong friend Sgt James E. Mulloy  were driving from Camp Lejeune at Jacksonville, North Carolina to  Louisville Kentucky and during the trip we stopped in the Smoky Mountains  in Tennessee to spend the night sleeping in the old 1950 Ford Jim had. I woke up about 0100 hours and looked over at Jim and there was a black bear at the drivers side door with his head in the window. I shook Jim awake and when he awoke and saw the bears head about 3 inches from his head he did what any good Marine did, he punched the black bear in the snout as hard as he could with a right cross and the bear let out a yelp and took off at a very rapid run. That was one of the funniest incidents that I remember from our Marine Corps days. Anyway, you had to be there  to appreciate the humor of it. Semper Fi.
 Bob Detheridge
 THREW DOWN THE BOOK...................................
 Sgt. Grit,
 Just a short story I hope you can print. I'm a
 state trooper and made a stop one day on a nice new
 Cady blowing down the highway. The tag was a purple
 heart USMC. I approached and made contact with the
 driver who was a polite gentleman so I had to ask
 where he served. He told me he was commissioned on
 Bougainville and wounded at Iwo Jima. I returned to
 my patrol car and picked up my ticket book and stopped
 what I was doing. I threw down the book and returned
 to the side of his car and thanked him for his service
 and asked that he slow it way down. His CO spoke up
 (his wife) and assured me he would. I never scratched
 paper on him and I won't ever tell how fast he was
 going. One other issue. There is no former or
 ex-Marines. Once a Marine always one.
 Thanks and Semper Fi Joe
 in reply to jake jackovich. kudos for you. that was one sweet move on the flak jackets. i was with india 3/7 66-67. when i first got to my outfit i was issued an m-14 that had most all the bluing gone. i don't remember if i was issued steel wool or not but i do remember having to remove the rust everyday with it.after more than about six months in the field we were trucked into chu lai for a very welcomed day at the beach. while walking to the beach we passed a company in formation. those remfs were standing there with brand new m-14s! two things are certain: sh*t always rolls downhill, and you will always find the grunt at the bottom. 
 john "pete" petrone, usmc 65-69.
 KINDA MENTAL......................................................
 I have been skating and playing ice hockey ever since I was old enough to walk, only pond hockey until recently, approx six years ago when I started playing in a local men's league. I love playing ice hockey 'cause it is the perfect blend of grace and brut strength, Kinda like the Marine Corps. I started playing goal about three years ago during pick up one night. We were sick and tired of playing without goalies, very seldom would one much less two show up. So after pick up one night I said I would be willing to give it a whirl but I wasn't going to buy 2 grand worth the pads to try it out. Well I opened my mouth and the coach proceeded to shove my foot in it by saying "Well the rink has a set for people to borrow" So next week I was on and I tell you what I fell in love with it, I love playing goal almost as much as I LOVE being a Marine.
 About a month later we were in the locker room after pick up and one of the new guys(didn't know I was in the Marines) came in and started giving me a hard time "Why in the hell would anyone want to be a goalie? You are a target, the entire other team's object is to kill you with a hard rubber projectile at just shy of a hundred miles an hour! You would have to be crazy to play goal"...... and on and on he went. I simply said hey man I love it and just kept changing out of my pads. He kept up with his ranting until I pulled off my chest protector and he saw my "When it absolutely positively has to be destroyed overnight, US MARINES T-shirt,  he gave a smile and said "You don't have to say a word, that explains it all!"
 I like the fact that people think we are kinda mental for doing what we do! It sets us apart and gives us our edge over everyone else. It's called Esprit De Corps and that is what makes the impossible possible!
 Semper Fi
 Jeffrey Busch
 Sgt, USMCR 94 to present
 SATIN JACKET........................................................
 I was in a airport not long ago and I had my Marine Corps League satin Jacket on.A young Marine walked over to me and said excuse me sir I would like to shake your hand.To my amazement I stood up and shook his hand. He explained to me that his Grandfather had a jacket just like it and he understood what us old timers went through to get to wear that jacket. He went on to explain that he was on his way to Afghanistan. I told him that I should be shaking his hand ,he would not here of it. He said he knew where he was going was not as bad as where I had been. Then he turned and walked away. I had to turn away so he would not see
 the tears on my face. I have never been so Proud of myself and him and the Corps. I have never been treated with more respect from anyone as that young Marine.God bless you son where ever you are. The Marine Corps still knows how to do it.
 Semper Fi Roger Hays
 I SHOULD GET MOTIVATED.....................................................
 SSgt. Blake, I too was there although not on your list of "attempt to
 contacts". I remember that night of July 15, 1967 and the rocket attack. I was with VMF 232 on the Marine side. What a night that was, the second volley of rounds hit a stack of 250 lb. bombs in the ammo dump which went off like the Fourth of July. Bomb frags everywhere. I have a tape recording from one of those old taped letters home we used to send out. Do you remember those?
 A friend was in the process of taping a letter home when the rocket
 attack started. He carried the recorder out to the bunker with him
 and recorded the whole attack. Its something to hear. I still have
 that tape somewhere in my old Marine gear. Being the old reel type tape I need to have it re-recorded onto a present day cassette tape. I should get motivated and have that done one of these days.
 >From one old Marine and retired cop to another, Semper Fi
 Rich Little, Chief
 Clarkson Police Department /
 Old Marine Sgt 1960129
 I JUST SALUTED..........................................................
 Hi Sgt Grit, Love your newsletter, about the only thing I read anymore. Just had to pass on a good Marine story. I graduated MCRD in 1969, in on the two year Vietnam 0311. Had I signed up for four years, would of maybe went to aviation school. On my way to Vietnam we stopped in Okinawa for a couple of days. My senior drill instructor was in the enlisted club at Camp Hansen. I asked him why he wasn't at the NCO club. He told me he had been busted for DWI in San Diego and busted from SSgt to private, also on
 his way to Nam. I did my thing as a grunt in Nam. A year after stint in Corps I joined San Diego Police Academy. Marine Corp training paid off. As a veteran police officer I happened to stop this SSgt for rolling a stop sign. As I approached the vehicle I recognized it and the person driving it dressed as a Marine with 3 stripes on a crisp uniform. He rolled down the window as I approached and said "yes sir may I help you" , I smelled the odor of alcohol on his breath and his speech was some what slurred. I said you don't have to call me Sir. He said Sir Yes Sir as I was demanded to say while under his control. With a huge smile I said, you don't remember me but when you used to get drunk, then have mail call, you called me Pvt Gallbladder. A smile came over his face when he focused on my name. I just saluted, said Semper Fi and walked back to my car.
 CPL Galbraith 69/71
 SMALL WORLD...................................................
 Sgt. Grit,
 I just have to share this event with the folks out there, especially S/Sgt. T. J. Whitten, Sgt. R. P. Lacoursiere and Sgt. M. S. Sugg, Drill Instructors of Platoon 247 (1957), Parris Island, SC
 I attended the DI reunion at PISC this past April and while there I visited the DI memorial. As I approached the monument I saw a salutary older person looking at the name bricks at the walkway leading to the monument. I was with another retired Marine and I wanted a photograph taken of the two old salts so asked the individual to assist. He did, I thanked him and then told
 him my name, Frank Dowden, he stepped back and said, "My name is Sid Crowe and you were my Drill Instructor in 1957. After 45 years it took the old brain housing a moment to make the placement but then I recalled. Really a joy to meet with him but the added pleasure was learning Sid Crowe retired from USMC and did a tour at PI as a DI. Its a small world.
 Frank H. Dowden
 USMC ret.
 CONCERNED MOTHER..........................................
 A Mother's son was going off to college for the first time so she wrote the President of the College. My son will be attending your University this fall, he is a very good boy so please look out for him. Make sure he has warm covers at night, warm food, he likes fresh air so be sure that his window is up about 1/2 foot, that is the way he likes it. Make sure he has on a scarf and a warm cap during the cold winter. Do not let him associate with boys that use curse words or has bad habits. Mr. President he is a good boy and has never been away from home but once and that was four years in the Marine Corps.
 Concerned Mother
 My first eight years in the Corps was as a "Seat Mech", the first two of that being in VMGR 352 at El Toro and 352 Forward in Okinawa and Viet Nam. Later, working as part of the I&I staff at an un-named reserve base, we had a Reserve Lt. Col. who was a real ass at times. He came into our shop one afternoon bitching about how slow we were getting his bird fixed (Air conditioning problem). We had just minutes previously received the report of the problem. Anyway, an hour or so later, as he was taxiing out to the runway, I was sitting by the end of the flight line calmly tossing an ejection seat cartridge (Actually an extra one) in the air and catching it. As he passed, I gave him the sign of the cross and a salute. Well, he shut the bird down right there a little bit, but it was worth it, cause that fella NEVER went into any of the shops and ragged on the troops after that. Yes, they took the bird into the hanger and we had to show him and the M.O, that the seat was still armed. I didn't get Office Hours for that one, but as a young Sgt., my next fitness
 report wasn't really nice, but then neither was what I did. Not proud of it, but it accomplished what I wanted. I also left the wing a few years later and spent my last fifteen years in the Intelligence field.
 IntelGunny (story from the bulletin board)
 YOU WOULDN'T UNDERSTAND...................................................
 Sgt. Grit & Marines,
 My time in the Marine Corps ended two years ago. I was not ready to be completely done with the military and I was looking for some financial help with college, so I joined the Army National Guard.
 If there are any Marines that are thinking of doing this same thing,
 DON'T! We are Marines! We are not meant to join the ranks of the nasty. All of the stuff that we Marines say about the Army is true. I thought it was just our competitiveness, but, they really are nasty. It is a huge culture shock for me. I have been with my unit for two years and still can not get used to being called by my first name. They don't know what a field day is and when I say I'm going to the head they just give me dumb looks. If you want to join a reserve military organization, join the Marine Corps Reserve. They are our brothers. They are the same squared away guys that you have worked beside in the fleet. The Army is for a different type of man. Not Marines. A lot of soldiers ask me what the Marine Corps did to make us the way we are. I generally say that we were all ready this way and that is why we joined the Marine Corps. When this nightmare is over I will have eight years of service. I will
 leave this experience behind me taking away what I've learned about the Army and go back to the Marine Corps Reserve.
 I like to say that I am still a Marine, I am just wearing this Army
 costume because of a stupid decision that I made.
 I have an EGA spare tire cover (thanks Sgt. Grit) on my Jeep. One day an Army Sergeant said, "what is that supposed to mean?". Sharply I responded, "You wouldn't understand". He said, "Try me." So I sounded off, "Honor, Courage, & Commitment! Discipline, The Instant Willing Obedience to Orders, Respect for authority, and Self Reliance, It's a way of life!" He looked at me like I was speaking Greek. I said, "See I told you that you wouldn't understand".
 Cpl. Steve Stanfield 3/24, 4th Mar Div, Kilo Co. 1st Plt. (1994-2000)
 HONORS SERVICE............................................................
 Sgt. Grit
 It was a cold, blustery December day in 1986 when Sgt Webster Burch was laid to rest. The Marines that were to present the honors to this fallen comrade were unable to find the cemetery where Sgt Burch was about to take command of his last post.
 I am proud to say that after 15 years these honors were bestowed upon him. My deepest thanks go out to Sgt Grit, SSgt Davis of the Norman, OK recruiting office and his fellow Marine recruiters.
 My Mother In-Law was so proud to see these honors presented to her husband. Her health is failing and she hope to have this done be fore she passed on. A fellow Marine took from his private collection a flag that flew from the Iwo Jima memorial and sent it with Sgt Davis to present to her. For the rest of the day she talked about how beautiful the Honors Service was and kept exclaiming that she couldn't believe she was given such an honorable flag.
 Sgt. Webster Burch served under Chesty Puller in China before the attack of Pearl Harbor. He was sent to Bataan and Corregidor when the fighting with the Japanese started. He was at Corregidor when he became a POW. For 1 1/2 years he was listed as missing in action, then the Japanese release the names of the men taken captive. Sgt Burch spent the next 3 years in several POW camps and was on the Hell Ship when it was marked to be destroyed. After liberation in 1945 Sgt Burch was brought to the Norman Navy Hospital were he was discharged.
 Sgt Burch went about his life raising a family and living the hell in his mind that all war veterans must endure. The severe conditions that he endured as a POW to their toll in his later live and he went to stand guard at the Pearly Gates.
 Do not let your loved ones go with out the honors they deserve. If you don't know how to get this done. Call the Marine Recruiting office near you. If they can't do it, they can surely find some one that can.
 Semper Fi
 Gary w. Gray
 Parris Island 1971
 DRILL INSTRUCTOR AS A PRIVATE...........................................
 Sgt. Grit:
 Let me get some "thinking hats" on our fellow Marines.
 How many of you had a Drill Instructor who had the rank of Private?
 Our Platoon did, and for years I have been wondering why, and thought this would be a good forum to mention it.
 Platoon 47 graduated from Parris Island SC in June 1947. I'm looking at my boot camp picture as I write this and the names of our three drill instructors are shown as: SSgt. Albring, Sgt. Schmid, and Pvt. Jensen! (Notice no first names were given, and you know we never asked them for their first names either)!
 But a Private serving as a drill instructor? He could not have been
 out of boot camp long himself, and if he went to DI school, surely he could have made PFC or Cpl.? As I remember he was a very qualified individual and since we "boots" (and that's the nice word) were constantly being reminded we were even beneath the esteemed grade of Private at the time, none of us ever made much of Jensen's grade.
 Incidentally, I met SSgt. Albring in Korea, and Sgt. Schmid, (first
 name Paul by the way), and his wife became very good friends of my wife and I when the four of us lived in the Alexandria, VA area for a few years. Both Albring and Schmid were W.W.II vets. But Pvt. Jensen??? Perhaps others can recall similar DI's, or shed some light on how a Pvt. became a DI?
 Gerald F. Merna
 1stLt., USMC (Ret.)
 "Author writing book about Marine Corps solicits input relative to
 appendix noting Marine lineage. Looking for successive family generation of Marines. If Marine veteran has two or more children who served in the Corps, then multiple "pedigree" lines will form. In the case of married Marines with USMC off-spring, Woman Marines may use either maiden or married name. Lineage must be by blood, although formal adoption acceptable. Lineage MUST be successive -- no generation skipping (i.e. grandparent and grandchild Marines, but father/mother who are in-between not). Following examples apply:
 Sergeant John Q. Smith - Sergeant Major James S. Smith - Colonel Susan M. Smith
 Colonel Thomas R. Jones - Corporal Robert T. Jones
 Sergeant James R. Brown - Sergeant Michael S. Brown - Major Michael S. Brown, Jr.
 Corporal Linda P. Swan - Sergeant Michael S. Brown - Major Michael S. Brown, Jr.
 Please respond by e-mail to LtCol G. Johnson, USMC (Ret)
 at: Include snail mail address and phone number in case there are any questions relative to verification."
 SICK CHILD.....................................................
 My name is Sean Jones. Long time reader, first time writer. I was
 formerly a Corporal in A co 8th Tank BN, FT.Knox, KY. I need a favor from all you DEVIL DOGS out there. I have a 5 year old cousin who has a potentially fatal disease. It is possible that she will need a bone marrow transplant. Kinsey is her name. She has to take a lot of HORRIBLE medications that no person (especially a child) should ever have to take. Needless to say, she is very sick and very down. Any words of encouragement for her parents or for her would be appreciated( including funny children's jokes). Let her parents know that our BAND OF BROTHERS AND SISTERS stand together. You can reach her at Also, anyone from 8th tanks, or PLT. 3062 PISC June 88 can reach me at
 Thanks for caring. SEMPER FI
 CPL.Sean Jones, USMC-R
 MARINES IN LAW ENFORCEMENT.....................................
 Sgt. Grit
 I just returned from the annual Peace Officer's Memorial in Washington, DC. I participated as a member of my department's honor guard. I just wanted to acknowledge the participation of numerous Marines who are police officers, and particularly those Marines who have sacrificed their lives in the line of duty. As I walked along the walls listing the names of over 15,000
 police officers who have died, I was struck by the number of Marine Corps emblems placed by many of the names. Marines have truly made their mark among the law enforcement ranks. It made me proud that Marines are so duty bound to remember their fallen comrades! I just wanted to share this and give a Semper Fi to all Marines and to all those Marines who are in law enforcement.
 David Mahoney
 Sgt Austin (TX) Police Department
 Capt USMC '89-97
 VERY SICK.......................................................
 As a Young Marine in Vietnam in 1967-68 I got very
 sick and ended up in the hospital in Danang, While
 there I started writing to Lori Ivy. Lori Helped a
 Very sick Marine when he needed it most. I made it
 home but lost contact with Lori. I have never
 forgotten her and wanted her to know I made it home.
 L/Cpl James Horn
 OLD TIMER............................................................
 As an "old timer" type (Parris Island Class of 59) I have a considerable dislike for the "new wave" term EGA short for Eagle Globe and Anchor. Well, to my old fashioned way of thinking, this is one uniform item that should be referred to with respect and reverence and there just ain't no shortcuts there. Many throughout the over two centuries of our existence have given all wearing that EAGLE GLOBE and ANCHOR. My Son, who is about to log his first year in the Corps was reeducated in emblem terminology and nomenclature during his first leave (post Parris Island). It started during our drive home. This issue has been festering
 within for quite a while...sorry, just had to get this off of my chest
 Thanks again!
 SHORT ROUNDS........................................................
 I have to reply to Sgt. G. Griswold. At Parris Island in 1965 the
 qualification sequence was Standing (offhand) from the 200 yd. line then knelling and sitting from the three hundred and prone from the five hundred. If you shot from the prone and didn't get the guy pulling butts to spin the spotting disk, you just weren't shootin good(inside the "V" ring) that day.
 Cpl.Frank Biddick 2121554, Plt 117
 I think I have the answer to the age -old question.
 MARINE< ? Always a MARINE from Induction on till the big CO says that's it.
 RRTalbot (60-64)
 I find it so amazing that most of us cannot remember our
 wives birthdays, or our anniversary; but you ask any Marine and
 he or she can spout out their platoon number and graduation
 date from boot camp...
 Sgt Allen A. McDougall
 Platoon 2083 Oct 23, 1985
 this is from ex-sgt g.l. beach who had the honor to serve under Lt.Col Hugh Kelly of 5th Comm/Batt in Danang of the year of Julu-1965. This Marine taught me the facts of life and the real reason of his life under General Chesty Puller.. All I can say, thank
 GOD FOR men like him. semper-fi
 To Wendy Archibald
 Mother of 2 Sgt's, a Cpl and a PFC:
 Oorah for all you have done for your country ma'am!
 Semper Fi,
 Sgt Dickey, T.P.
 Sergeant of Marines

God Bless America!!
Semper fi!!
Sgt Grit

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