Sgt Grit Newsletter - 23 OCT 2014

In this issue:
• Please Stay Within The Yellow Box
• Other Ranks Are But Jobs
• Sports In The Marine Corps

Online Store TShirts Men's Headgear Patches Women's

Flags   Family Member   Ka-Bars   Auto   Headgear  Jackets  ALL CATEGORIES  

Request a catalog
Facebook Twitter Sgt Grit Blog Sgt Grit's RSS Feeds
USMC Life Is Tough John Wayne Coin
Limited Edition

Sgt Grit Vietnam Veteran Commemorative Pocket KnifeSgt Grit Vietnam Veteran Commemorative Pocket Knife

Vietnam War Era

Vietnam Veteran Shadow Cover/HatVietnam Veteran Shadow Cover/Hat

See More Vietnam War Era Items

Christmas Long Sleeve Specials

2014 Sgt Grit Exclusive Christmas Santa Long Sleeve T-Shirt2014 Sgt Grit Exclusive Christmas Santa Long Sleeve T-Shirt

2014 Sgt Grit Exclusive Christmas Bulldog Long Sleeve T-Shirt2014 Sgt Grit Exclusive Christmas Bulldog Long Sleeve T-Shirt

Christmas Short Sleeve Specials

2014 Sgt Grit Exclusive Christmas Santa T-Shirt2014 Sgt Grit Exclusive Christmas Santa T-Shirt

2014 Sgt Grit Exclusive Bulldog T-Shirt2014 Sgt Grit Exclusive Bulldog T-Shirt

Long Sleeve T-shirts

USMC Life Is Tough John Wayne Long Sleeve T-ShirtUSMC Life Is Tough John Wayne Long Sleeve T-Shirt

USMC Comfort Colors Long Sleeve Pocket TeeUSMC Comfort Colors Long Sleeve Pocket Tee

Not As Lean Long Sleeve Pocket TeeNot As Lean Long Sleeve Pocket Tee

Long Sleeve Semper Fi ThermalLong Sleeve Semper Fi Thermal

See All Long Sleeve T-shirts

Stack & Swivel

USMC Double Sided Acrylic Knit ScarfUSMC Double Sided Acrylic Knit Scarf

See All Scarves


Eagle, Globe, and Anchor Black Utility CoverEagle, Globe, and Anchor Black Utility Cover

Eagle, Globe, and Anchor OD Green Boonie Cover/HatEagle, Globe, and Anchor OD Green Boonie Cover/Hat

See All Headgear

New Items

USMC Football with T-Handle Air PumpUSMC Football with T-Handle Air Pump

See All New Items

Sgt Grit's Catalog

Browse our digital catalog.Take a look inside our newest catalog.


Print this newsletter
Newsletter Archives

36th CMC General Joseph F. Dunford

All Hail the 36th Commandant of the Marine Corps! General Joseph F. "Fighting Joe" Dunford.

Read the Commandant's message to all Marines:

Commandant's message to all Marines

Different Versions Of Marines' Hymn

Sgt Grit,

Has there ever been any type of research into how many different versions there are to The Marines' Hymn?

A little background into my request... I returned from Okinawa to San Diego in early June, 1957... married the love of my life in the Base Chapel at MCRDep on 26 June 1957 and had over 56 fantastic years with her, which ended on 25 October 2013; she is waiting for me until I report for guard duty some day.

On 31Dec13, I changed to DISH Network, and one of the features are 70+ channels of Sirius XM satellite radio; one of which is "40s on 4", mostly songs (a lot of tear-jerkers) from the WWII era. You haven't heard anything until you hear a jazz version of The Marine's Hymn by Bob Crosby (Bing's brother) and his "Bob Cats". Another band has the version in question with words, "admiration of the Nation, we're the finest ever seen, and we glory in the title 'United States Marine'", and it goes on to the wording about the Streets of Heaven being guarded by United States Marines.

Semper Fi...
James R. McMahon
GySgt of Marines (1949-1970)

2014 Sgt Grit Christmas Mugs

Please Stay Within The Yellow Box

Yellow footprints in front of escalator

This image was posted on the Sgt Grit Facebook page last week. The image displays an yellow outlined box in front of an escalator containing yellow footprints and the text "Please Stay Within The Yellow Box". The image also has the comment made by Marine and Sgt Grit customer Tom Mahoney, "I refused to get on this escalator. Something told me it was some sort of magical trap that would transport me back to Parris Island. Fool me once...".

Here are a few of the comments left about this post:

B. Knight - My little brother and I used to always stray from the spot where we were supposed to wait for rides after school. My dad, a Marine SSgt. at the time, threatened to paint yellow footprints on the sidewalk. When I got to Parris Island, I saw the yellow footprints and started laughing at the memory of my dad and his threat. Not a wise move...

V. Millen Jr. - I wonder how many they picked up in the fetal position!

D. Atwood - I have 2 sets on the deck in my workshop - one for The Boy, and one for The Girl.

Kid on dad's footprints in workshop

M. Porter - Very funny... I love Sgt. Grit. Not personally, just his product line.

E. Needham - I would just bet that there's SOMEONE close to that escalator watching for Marines to see their reactions!

C. Weeks - Same thing at the Smithsonian. I went and found the stairs.

B. Seastrand - Enough said! Once is more than enough.

View more of these comment on the Sgt Grit Facebook Page.

Other Ranks Are But Jobs

Marine Gunnery Sergeant 1918

Sgt. Grit,

In 1944 when I went to Boot Camp we were informed that in the Old Days there were Wooden Ships and Iron Men, now all they had were Iron Ships and wooden Men. I don't remember being on any wooden ships but some Wooden boats that took us to shore, course those wooden boats had slabs of steel in critical places to help stop bullets, you couldn't do any thing about the Mortar shells raining down or the Artillery shells exploding here and there. Life is hazardous in war in all kinds of places, ship or shore.

My DI had survived Guadalcanal and Tarawa and I met him later on Okinawa. He was on the ship I was on going ashore on our last Great Battle of the Pacific War. Some years Later I met him again when I had Prison Duty as they were Transferring Prisoners from Naval Prisons to Federal Prisons closer to their homes. He was a 1st Lt. again as he had been later in WWII. We had a short conversation about our past and the Future, I later learned he had retired as a Captain and was living in New Zealand with the lady he married during the War. My biggest regret is my memory isn't what it used to be and his name remains a Memory but his rank as GySgt. was probably why I always held GySgt. as the most revered of all ranks in the Marine Corps (I know some of you Punctuation Mechanic's are going to comment on how I failed to remember MSgt & MGySgt but this story ain't about them).

The only Rank I hold above Gunnery Sergeant is Sergeant Major of the Marine Corps, the other ranks are but Jobs and Job Titles and I'm sure I have rattled some bones and earned the enmity of some of my peers, So be it.

Before WWI the Top Rank in the Marine Corps was Gunnery Sergeant. I have a Picture of a Marine Gunnery Sergeant 1918 and the comment on the bottom of the picture is, "The Commanding Presence and Personal Example of such Veteran NCO's enables the 4th Marine Brigade to Fight Effectively against the Most Lethal Adversaries the Corps had Ever Faced." Col. John Thompson wrote about these Men and how they led him as a Young Lieutenant through the Great War (World War 1) and a Picture of one of them is in Google and I show it here. (Image courtesy of the Marine Corps Art Collection)

GySgt. F. L. Rousseau, USMC Retired

My Car

Tet Marine rear car view

Tet Marine rear license plate bolt

Regarding the recent picture submitted by "Tee" Turner of four friends reuniting in TX after 46 years, I am the one from CT, wearing the tan "Chu Lai Vietnam" hat supplied by SGT Grit. Just thought I would send along a picture of my car, with Marine Corps pride, also supplied mostly by SGT Grit.

Jim Kiehnle
CPL of Marines

Get Marine Corps Auto Accessories for your POV!

Limited Stock Offer

My Special Creation Passed Muster

Marine holding custom ditty bag

Custom ditty bag open

Hi Sgt Grit staff,

I thought you might smile at this:

My Marine has had to travel a lot over the years as he's pursued his high-tech career. Expert at traveling light, his ditty bag was a Delta Airline's promotional that he found so practical. Unzip it like a zippered Bible and open it flat to reveal two clear plastic zippered compartments. Kept everything neat and TSA always cleared it. But its years of use showed in all the ripped plastic making it unusable.

So I decided at make him one without his knowledge. Had to measure the dying bag, figure out all the pieces, make the pattern and painstakingly determine in just what order to sew them to each other. Found my Eagle, Globe and Anchor patch and wanted to use that on the front, but didn't want it stitched on top (ala that "loving hands at home" look) and thought that if I inset it the whole bag would look more professional. HARD work! Many times during the construction I feared I would never finish it. But true to the encouraging poster I made and mounted above my computer, I improvised, I adapted, and I overcame!

He'd been out of work for 7 weeks and this Monday we went out to dinner to celebrate his brand new job which will require occasional trips from Washington State to Charleston, SC. I presented him the new shaving kit and when he unwrapped it and unzipped it he was delighted! The first words were "Wow, did you find this on Grit?!" He knows you sell really great stuff. It really raised my self-esteem to know that my special creation passed muster enough for him to think it was sold by you guys!

Keep up the good work!

Harriet Cook
Very Proud Wife and Mother of United States Marines!

USMC Muster Rolls - 1stLt George B. Batten

George B. Batten enlisted in the Marine Corps on September 16, 1914. He was accepted into the service at Philadelphia, and went through recruit training as a member of Company D, Recruit Depot, Marine Barracks, Navy Yard, Norfolk, Virginia. After recruit training, he served with the Marine Detachment aboard the U.S.S. New Jersey. While aboard the New Jersey, he visited ports along the East Coast and Carribean, including Navy Yard Boston; Hampton Roads, Virginia; Guantanamo Bay, Cuba; Guacanayabo Bay, Cuba; Culebra, Puerto Rico; Navy Yard, Philadelphia; Newport, Rhode Island; Provincetown, Massachusetts; Charleston, South Carolina; and Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic. In August 1916, Private Battan joined the 45th Company in the Dominican Republic, serving in La Cumbre and Canada Bonita. On November 8, 1916 George was promoted to Corporal. On June 8, 1917 the 45th Company became part of the 3rd Battallion, 5th Marines, and were assigned to the American Expeditionary Forces (AEF). The company sailed the Atlantic for duty in France in June, 1917. On April 5, 1918 George was sent to the Army Candidates School in France. On July 31, he was commissioned a 2nd Lieutentant, and assigned to Marine Corps Reserve Class 4. He then was assigned to the 1st Corps Artillery Brigade in Hosieres, France, where he participated in the Meuse-Argonne Offensive. On November 16, 1918, he assumed command of 1st Platoon, 45th Company (Company "L") and participated in the march of the allied armies towards the Rhine River via Belgium and Luxembourg, following the evacuation of the German Army. He then marched to Waldbreitbach, Germany. On April 7, 1919 he took the oath of office as a 1st Lietentant, with a date of rank of August 18, 1918. He served in 20th Company (Company "K") as part of the Army of the Occupation at Stopperich, Germany. On June 6, 1919, he returned to the 45th Company (Company "L") as a Platoon Commander. On July 25, 1919, they embarked on the U.S.S George Washington at Brest, France for the return trip home. The 3rd Battalion, 5th Marines were deactivated on August 13, 1919.

(Data from USMC Muster Rolls)

Jerry Barrett

Banana Wars

After talking to a recently discharged Marine the other night, I got to wondering how much Marine Corps history they teach in boot camp now.

I told him that when I was in the Marine Corps League, there was a Marine who enlisted in the Corps in the 1920's, and that he was with Smedley Butler and Dan Daly in Nicaragua during the Banana Wars. He seemed to not know of what I was speaking! I'm sure there is a lot more history of the Corps now that I've been out for nearly 55 years, and maybe those times are not as important. But it was still the glory years of the Marine Corps. I was awed that two Wake Island defenders were on staff when I went through ITR.

I now wish I would have talked more to the old trooper (who was really not that old then) about what he did after December 7, 1941. He might have only been in his early thirties at that time. I know I felt that I had served my time when Viet Nam started, and was glad I couldn't be drafted. But WWII was different.

James V. Merl

Sports In The Marine Corps

Sgt. Grit,

I am the Secretary of the Quantico Marine Athletes of the Sixties. Our group was formed in 2000 to honor Marines with whom we played sports at Quantico, and who subsequently were KIA in RVN.

In today's e-mail edition of The Newsletter, Sgt Grimes touts a Cherry Hill Marines football Program. For anyone who has an interest in Marine athletics, may I suggest they click onto our website Most of the information is about sports at Quantico, but this ubiquitous undertaking is mostly the handiwork of John Gunn, the legendary chronicler of Marine Athletics. Most of John's work is now in the Museum of the Marine Corps in Quantico, VA.

The cast of characters who played sports in the Marine Corps is truly astounding: General officers, NFL players and coaches, Hall of Fame College Coaches, Doctors, Olympic medalists, etc. Check it out next time you're surfing the net.

Semper Fi
Ron Timpanaro
091--- USMCR

Disbanded Black Berets

About 5 months ago I confronted a poser where I work. He really ticked me off and when I jumped on him I had accepted the fact that I was probably gonna loose my job. He asked me how long I was in and I told him 23 years. Don't know if it sunk in but he still continued to tell me he was in in 1968 and was in the Marine Corps Black Berets. They are the toughest of all Marines because they run 20 miles everyday before breakfast. Well the guy disappeared for a while but for the last two weeks he has been coming in daily. He sits with a Tribal Elder who is a friend of mine and just considers him a big story teller. The part that bothers me is that he is now sporting a Black Cover with a Gold Marine Corps Emblem and it says United States above and Marines below the emblem. Every night the Elder and I say good-bye to each other and this puke tries to get me to say good-bye to him. I have refused to even speak to him but it is driving me friggen nuts. I truly want to just punch this dung pile right in his pie hole but I know some one else that did just that in a bar and is now being Sued for damages. Anyone have any ideas? I only have 6 more working days in this place because I am going into full retirement and I do fully intend to verbally rip him a new azs on my way out the door but I just hate seeing him wearing that cover and trying to get everyone else to think he is some kind of war hero. By the way when I confronted him the last time he told me Nam ended at the end of 68 and they disbanded the Black Berets after that. He also told me the Black Berets had more confirmed kills than all the other units combined in Viet Nam.

Gy Mac
USMC Retired

Notre Dame And Baltimore Colts

An interesting player listed in the Marine Football Program posted by Jim Grimes is Jim Mutscheller. He graduated from Notre Dame, served two years in the Marine Corps, and was selected for the All Marine Team in 1952. Mutscheller played for the Baltimore Colts for nine years, was on the All Pro Team in 1957, and played on the 1958 and 1959 NFL Championship teams.

Bob Shannon
GySgt USMCR 1971-1984

The Football Team From Quantico

Sgt Grit,

While I was in college (College of the Holy Cross, Worcester, Mass, Class of 1967) the football team from Quantico was actually on our football team's schedule one year. I cannot remember the specific year, but I can remember the game. The Marines from Quantico pretty much mauled the guys on our team - but at least they had the common sense not to run up the score too much!

About a year after graduating from college, I enlisted in the Corps and found myself experiencing the reality that is Parris Island. It was there that I came to understand why it is that although I had always believed that our college football team were all pretty tough guys who were in great shape, I had no concept of what it really means to be either "tough" or "in great shape".

By the way, the experience of going through Parris Island AFTER having graduated from college was "interesting" (our Drill Instructors always seemed to take a special interest in me after their review of my 201 File let them know I was a "college boy").

It was incredible to watch the process that the Corps had developed over the years (and the skill sets exhibited by the individual DI's) that transformed a diverse bunch of kids into US Marines. We had a Recruit in our Platoon who could not read or write very well. Another Recruit was assigned to him full-time to witness any document that had to be signed; the one recruit would literally put his "X" on the dotted line and the other Recruit would sign as "Witness". We even had two Recruits who were there because some judge gave them the choice of either going to jail, or joining the Military. Despite all of those challenges, our DI's accomplished the mission that the Corps assigned to them - they made Marines out of us.

And in case you were wondering - yes, prior to enlisting, I had applied for a Commission in all of the Branches of the US Military and was turned down by all of them because my eyesight was "...beyond the waiverable limits." However, since my eyesight was NOT bad enough to prevent me from getting Drafted, I decided to enlist and train with the best, rather than being Drafted into one of the "also-ran" Branches of the US Military. (P.S. About three weeks into our AIT at Camp Geiger, I was called into the Company Commander's Office and given the opportunity to apply for The Basic School at Quantico. It seemed that there was a way to get a waiver after all.)

I have managed to accomplish a thing or two in my life since then. However, very few things fill me with as much of a sense of pride and accomplishment as does the ability to say, "Yes, I am a former Marine."

Thanks for taking the time to publish this newsletter each week, and for the great selection of quality products you offer, and for your Service.

Semper Fi!

Henry ("Hank") Nocella
Former Marine

The Marines Won 69 To 0

While stationed at Quantico, Virginia in the fall of 1951 the Marine Corps Football Team was stationed there. Their quarterback was famous from graduating from Notre Dame, if my memory is correct his name was Pettibone. The Marines had the heaviest line of any team in America as the draft was on for the Korean War they drafted top players they were to play Fort Belvoir an Army team, the Marines wanted a great turn out of Marines at the game in Washington DC so you either had to go or no liberty as it was cancelled if you did not attend the game, the Marines won the game 69 to 0.

Former Marine Sgt. Phil Street

The Sailors Marching... At Best A Joke

In the 10/1/2014 edition of the newsletter there was mention of a football game in San Diego late in the year. The game was between the MCRD team and the team from Pensacola, and if memory serves me right it was sometime close to the Marine Corps birthday. I was in Plt 275 and we had just finished rifle qual at Camp Mathews and since we were going to be allowed to attend the game we rode cattle cars back to MCRD. The game was held in Balboa Stadium and I believe the team from Pensacola won. And yes the sailors marching, if that's what you want to call it, was at best a joke.

Ken Thomas
USMC '61-'66
USMCR '73-'81

In A Chair Going Over

I remember during the Gulf of Tonkin incident, while with the 9th Marine Reg. our 1st Lt. (I won't give his name) but he was a prior All American from some school in Texas. One day a Destroyer came along side of our ship, threw a line over and soon our Lt. was in a chair over going over to the Destroyer and on his way back to Okinawa. It appeared some General needed him for the football team. Oh for the good old days.

R/S Jim Logan 1831XXX

Spoke Derisively Of The Lifers

I wish to offer a reply to the recent comments by Gunny Hat, A Former.

Like you, I graduated from boot camp (MCRD Parris Island) fifty years ago--the month before you, in fact. Unlike you, I was a 6-month reservist. That changed less than a year later when I read about Operation Starlight. With Marines fighting and dying in Vietnam I was not content to remain a weekend warrior in Springfield, Missouri. So I went to the local recruiter and enlisted in the Regular Marine Corps. I requested that I keep the same MOS, 0311, and requested duty in Vietnam. Believe it or not, I was afraid the war would be over before I got there! Turned out they had enough time to send me over twice.

I'm not proud to admit it, but I was one of those guys who spoke derisively of the "lifers". I had cause to rethink this narrow-minded attitude toward career Marines sometime in the early 1980s when I got in touch with Tony Aguilar who was a Staff Sgt. when he was my platoon sergeant in Vietnam with Lima 3/1. Like you, Tony had served on the drill field following his second Vietnam tour. When we reunited he was the Sergeant Major of Parris Island. I cannot tell you how proud I was, and am, to have served as a squad leader for this man. I reflected on how I put guys down by calling them lifers. What would the Marine Corps be like, I realized, if there were no lifers? The answer is, there would not be one.

That said, let me address your comment about the guys you say you've met who, like me, spent their four years in and got out.

"Interestingly enough," you write, "all of them say they wish they had stayed for 20 years. And many of them are just as loyal and dedicated to the Marine Corps as they were when they were on active duty." Then you imply the only reason they, or I should say, we, di not stay in was peer pressure. Are you kidding! We had the b-lls to put our lives on the line for our fellow Marines, but could not ship over due to peer pressure?!

You are right about guys like me who are still loyal and dedicated to the Corps. But the truth is, the reason this great organization continues to work so amazingly well is because there are some, like you and Tony, who chose to dedicate their lives to it, and others, like me and a good many other Sgt. Grit subscribers, who chose to step up, earn the title U.S. Marine, and return to civilian life.

Semper Fidelis,
Gary Harlan
Proud to have been a Sergeant of Marines

Marine Tattoo Of The Week

My tattoo honoring the Marines killed in the Beirut Bombing in 1983.

Philip Alexander

Beirut Bombing Tattoo

Private Talkative And Sgt Quiet​


We had a few funny incidents at this place - one Sgt and a private shares a cubicle - he insists on the top rack after the private makes up the bottom rack - they argue and the Sgt relents and takes the bottom one - real different people - Sgt Campbell is a hillbilly from Kentucky - and in charge of a office at Hdqrs MC - and the private is a nice guy but uneducated from Chicago - private talkative and Sgt quiet.

Private goes to Club after payday - comes back sh-t-faced and climbs into top rack fully clothed and falls asleep - at 2 or 3 a.m. he awakes leans over the rack and pukes on the Sgt who is sleeping - Sgt who is usually quiet goes nuts - and yells and screams and wakes up squad bay? A lot of us has been there and done that - so a few of us throw the private in the shower fully dressed and run the cold water on his sorry azs. Sgt also takes a shower and really relishes the discomfort of the the private.

The next morning the private wakes up to a pounding headache - he says that some little people are playing a bass drum in his head and someone is blowing a bugle too! Private goes to work and Sgt also arises and goes to work. That day after work (the Sgt is a little wiry guy and the private a big dude from the streets of Chicago) Start To Talk About The Night Before - the private tells him where to go and how to do it - and tells him he can stick his Sgt chevrons where the sun don't shine! The Sgt says I can take you to the first Sgt - :: - let me digress for a minute - the Company A offices for Hdqrs. MC are in the barracks - so we have officers and high staff NCO's coming in and out - usually using our heads - and sometimes walking in our squad bays too - our floors are linoleum - but we have them buffed to a high shine that you can see your reflection in - very spit and polish squad bays. Now the private says to the Sgt - " F-ck You and the First Sergeant!" Just Then The First Sergeant and the Company A Commanding Officer Enter The Squad Bay And Hear This Silly Son Of A B-tch Ranting!

Bruce Bender
USMC 1963-1967
Vietnam Era Veteran

B.S. Detector Responses

Sgt Grit,

That detector should be blowing up! First, how many of you came out of boot an E-3? Really!

Get a rope...

Sgt O.

In response to Don Ryan's question in the 10/15 newsletter about whether the MOS for aircraft fires/rescue is 7000 something, the MOS is 7051. However, I have never run across a Marine that does not remember what MOS he/she held during their career. Or a Viet Nam vet that cannot remember where he/she served in country.


To continue the MOS for that slot is:

7051/Aircraft Crash, Fire and Rescue Man

So that much might be true, but he would have been based at a airfield, not out on LZ's something is wrong somewhere.

Semper Fi
Wayne Ingram
MCRD San Diego 1969, 1970 - Medical out due to being hit by a car. "A toast to our Country, a toast to our fallen, a toast to our past, a toast to our present and a toast to our future... and a toast to Chesty, wherever you are!"

In response to Don Ryan's request about Marine Corps MOS Numbers. He can find a complete list of Milirary Occupational Specialty (MOS) for the Marine Corps at the web site, List of United States Marine Corps MOS. To answer his question about aviation fire/rescue, the Marine Corps' MOS is 7051 Aircraft Rescue and Firefighting. Hope this helps.

Semper Fi,
Bob Applegarth, Sgt., 1965-1971
6511 Aviation Ordnance

I just wanted to provide the information to Don Ray about the Aircraft fire/rescue MOS. I googled it and the MOS number that came up was 7051 Aircraft Fire Rescue/Firefighting Specialist. Basically this is the Crash Crew. I did find that you must past a medical and OSHA requirements for fire fighting.

This is a job that I would not want. I had to go to a ship board firefighting school before being deployed aboard the USS Midway (CV-41) from July 1982 to January 1983. Was pulled off on emergency Leave before the end of the deployment (6 Month).

Dennis Beach
MCTSSA/2nd Medical Bn./25th Staff Group/HAMS-11/VMFP-3

To Don Ryan. As an old air winger I do remember the MOS for aircraft fire/rescue was 7051. I would however question his response of LZ's to the question as to where he served while in Nam.

Paul Kelly
Sgt. of Marines
HML 167
1968 - 1974

List of United States Marines Corps MOS 7000 Airfield Services

Don Ryan asked about MOS's. A 7051 is fire and rescue. Check the above for any others.

I agree that we have a lot of pretenders, and yes some of them were actual marines (small "m") who like to blow smoke when they can get away with it. I remember as a very young and inexperenced brown bar at how impressed I was with some of the stories that certain staff NCO's, who were not that long back from Korea, enjoyed telling. And I am sure there was a lot of truth in some of the stories, but surely not all. Hey, if it starts getting too deep, ask them where they keep the shovel so that you wont drown in it.

Joe Sanders
Maj USMC (ret)

Sgt. Grit,

In response to Don Ryan in his letter about "B.S. Detector Ain't Broke" here is a listing of all the Vietnam era MOS's:

From this list: MOS 7051 Aircraft Firefighting and Rescue Specialist. Whether the guy Don is talking about was one or not is a different story. Also I don't think anyone was making L/Cpl out of boot in 1969.

Tom Tilque
Cpl USMC 1969-73
2554xxx MOS 2531/0431

Plt 2108, MCRD San Diego, CA (1969)
Fox Co, 2nd ITR, Camp Pendleton, CA (1969)
C&E Bn, MCRD San Diego, CA (1969)
Hq Co.(Nucleus), 4th Mar Div., Camp Pendleton (1970)
Hq & Hotel Btry, 3/12 Okinawa & Vietnam (1970-72)
Hq Btry, 4/11 MCB, 29 Palms, CA (1972-73)

The MOS of Crash Fire/Rescue is 7051 Proudly served in YUMA, AZ, 1987-1993.

I can't see any truth in this story as when we are deployed we are a support group that rescues pilots and personnel from aircraft crashes and emergencies, and even in country would be stationed on base and would only go to crash sites if warranted. (we are nicknamed Krispy Kritters because of our jobs, but Most times when we are upon a crash, the pilot has ejected and we surround and drown the burning aircraft.)

The first Live Rescue of any pilot from a crash (egress out of airplane) was from a harrier jet at YUMA in Summer of 1992 on a Friday the 13th, and I believe it was documented as the First Live rescue in something like 45 years at that time, (which would bring it before the vietnam war).

So yeah, I call that the BS detector was flaming hot!


TRIGGERS: Once again the trigger has been squeezed. I'm sitting here on my 72nd birthday remembering mail call on my 18th one in Boot Camp. I received about 15 letters that day and had to leave formation and run front and center for each letter. I must have done 100 pushups that day for all the sh-t that was written on the outside of the envelopes (I had told everyone NOT to write anything on the outside!). My cousin who was with 3/5 at Chosin wrote on his (he knew what he was doing) RTDIIY BF. My DI asked me if I knew what that meant and I responded "Sir, yes Sir it means "Remember the Drill Instructor is your best friend", I got thumped for that. I had around 6 or seven girls I knew writing to me at the time and the Drill Instructors referred to me as "United Nations" because one had a German name, one Polish, one Armenian, one Belgian, one Hispanic, one Hungarian, etc. etc. (no CPL. Howard Hada, Lois wasn't one of them because remember your Step Dad said I wasn't allowed to talk to her). That was a very long mail call for me and I might not have been smiling on the out side but I sure was on the inside!

The other "trigger" was a football game played at Aztec stadium (San Diego State vs MCRD I think) in the last part of '60. Not sure how many of us were taken there by cattle car but it had to be several series. One of the male cheerleaders came over to lead us in a cheer but there wasn't much enthusiasm on our part, that's when several DI's stood and told us that if we didn't cheer we would pay for it later back at MCRD! I still remember the look on that cheerleaders face when we gave out the next cheer, I'm pretty sure the game stopped because of it, and they could have heard us in San Diego. Ah, to be in such a motivated group again!

SGT. Grit, Just the facts Ma'am. SGT. Joe Friday.

CPL. Seledrs

P.S. SGT. Rossi pointed out to me a long time ago that the only time you're an "X" Marine is when the X's are over your eyes.


(Vol #10, #3)

I shall digress to explain the very last part of my previous letter. Following the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor President Franklin D. Roosevelt ordered that production of passenger cars would be halted and the assembly lines would be converted to production of items for the military. In early 1942 gasoline was rationed for all civilian consumption. The limit for a private car was 3 gallons per week with an 'A' sticker; 8 gallons per week with a 'B' sticker (for those who had to commute to a war related job) or 5 gallons at a time with a 'C' sticker (These were unlimited and issued to police and fire personnel, doctors and farmers). You had to have a sticker on your windshield to buy any gas. When WWII ended so did gas rationing and people could again say 'Fill it up' and go wherever they wished. Soon new cars were coming off the lines. People had been able to save a lot of money during the war and were now taking trips to places they had never thought of going before. The roads were clogged. The New Castle - Pennsville ferry - between Delaware and New Jersey - was a major problem. The waiting time on either side was usually three to five hours. Delaware was the first to recognize this and decided to build a bridge between those two cities. They had the money and were able to complete the job within about two years. They named it the 'Delaware Memorial Bridge' to honor those who had served in WWII and did not survive. The construction of this bridge was going to place a burden on the road system of New Jersey which had nothing to gain because they felt that those who crossed the bridge were headed for New York City or New England - not Jersey. They got their heads together and soon placed articles in the local press showing a map of New Jersey with an almost straight line on it between Pennsville and N.Y.C. They said "If your property lies within 150 feet of this line it is in jeopardy of being acquired by the state for construction of the proposed New Jersey Turnpike." This became a topic of conversation - and lawsuits - for more than three years. You could not get a haircut without everyone in the barber shop voicing their opinion of this proposal. I lived quite close to the line but we were not involved. A nearby farmer by the name of 'Cecil' owned a 105 acre property that was to be cut in two. He took it very philosophically. He did not contest it. But in the end he was left with his 60 year old homestead, his barn and a half dozen other buildings on one side of the Turnpike and all of his pastures taken by the state or left on the other side of the road.

His only access to the pastures was to go about 12 miles north and through an underpass and go south 12 miles. And of course he was not able to move his cattle between his barn and the pastures. He sold his cattle and the acreage on the other side of the highway and decided to live out his life in the house that had been built in about 1890 on property his family had owned for more than 100 years. He passed away just a couple of years later and left his elderly widow and a grown son living in a three story home of simply humongous proportions.

My parents returned from vacation while I was in O.C. and went to the Cedar Lodge. They asked the owner if she could refer them to a realtor. - Mr. B's firm was right across the street.

Semper Fi. The old, real old, real, real old (85) Master Gunny.

Harold T. Freas, Sr.

Grabasstic Patrol Up A Creek

BAT plt and Flame plt Marines

The Gun Club, assembled in the gulch. (Actually, 106RR or "BAT" Platoon (Battalion Anti-Tank) and Flame Platoon, combined)... H&S 2/1/9 in the Northern Training Area of Okinawa, 1959). Since our recoilless rifles and Jeeps had not caught up with us yet, we were used as the Bn Aggressor Force. The rifle companies would come up to the NTA one at a time from Sukiran to find/engage us... and, since the boondocks were our 'home court', the second and later companies really didn't have a chance... This is kinda old Corps... M-1's, M1919A4 air-cooled .30 Cal Brownings, herringbone utilities, and in this picture, the old green woolen shirts, as aggressor uniform. Since no blanks had been invented for the Flame Thrower (M2), the Flame guys usually got to be machine gun crew... most of either team having the M1911A1 .45cal pistol as sidearms. We were camping out up there for multiple weeks... got hot chow once most days, and some kick-back time when between companies... I recall an all-NCO grabasstic patrol up a creek... or maybe it should have been called 'swim call'?, as we were all buck nekkid, doing the Tarzan bit with vines, etc... until one of us realized that if somebody got seriously hurt, we were all in deep kimchi... In this picture, over half a century later, I can identify, among other trades, a surgeon, a feddle gubmint landscape architect, a mortgage broker, several law enforcement officers, and more than one career Marine... (buncha dumb-ss grunts, anyway...)



Marines of Plt 1229, 1970 MCRD San Diego Reunite

Got together with 3 guys I was in Boot Camp with while on a business trip to Louisiana. I have not seen these Marines since March 7, 1970 when we left MCRD San Diego for ITR at Camp Pendelton. Myself and Pvt Randall Axelsen immediately went to Infantry training while the rest of Platoon 1229 enjoyed a couple of week of Mess and Maintenance duty. We got together in LaPlace, LA.

Left to Right Sgt. Jim Grimes, Sgt. Mike Hinds, W05 Mike Anthony, and SSgt Jewell Cazes.

We are planning a reunion next year in Branson, Missouri. If you know of anyone from our Platoon please let me know.

Sgt. Jim Grimes 1969-72

P.S. note the horizontal alignment.

Short Rounds

Marine Survives Sniper Headshot By Inches In Afghanistan.

See video at: Marine Survives Sniper Headshot


"All the war-propaganda, all the screaming and lies and hatred, comes invariably from people who are not fighting."
--George Orwell, Homage to Catalonia​

"You go into Afghanistan, you got guys who slap women around for five years because they didn't wear a veil. You know, guys like that ain't got no manhood left anyway. So it's a h-ll of a lot of fun to shoot them. Actually it's quite fun to fight them, you know. It's a h-ll of a hoot. It's fun to shoot some people. I'll be right up there with you. I like brawling."
--Gen. James Mattis

"I come in peace. I didn't bring artillery. But I'm pleading with you, with tears in my eyes: If you f-ck with me, I'll kill you all."
--Gen. James Mattis

"There are only two kinds of people that understand Marines: Marines and the enemy. Everyone else has a second-hand opinion."
--Gen. William Thornson, U.S. Army

"I can't hear you." "Get your footlockers over your heads."

"We dig fighting holes....not 'foxholes'....foxes use theirs to f-ckin'... ours are for fighting."

"The smoking lamp is lit for one. Guide, light it and pass it around."

Semper Fi, Mac!
Sgt Grit

©2014 Sgt Grit Inc
All rights reserved
7100 SW 44th Street
Oklahoma City, OK 73179
You are reading Sgt Grit's weekly newsletter.

To Submit a story - Email
Subscribe to this newsletter.

Unsubscribe from the Sgt Grit Newsletter and Special Offers email list.