Favorite Marine SNCO Story

Another inspection at Marine Barracks, Naha… the inspecting officer is Lt.Gen Alan Shapely, at the time the CG, FMF PAC. On December 7th, 1941, he was aboard the USS Arizona, as a Major, and had just been relieved the previous day as the CO of Arizona’s Marine Detachment. He had stayed aboard, as his Marines were scheduled to play in a championship baseball game that Sunday. He was aloft, with a cup of coffee, when the Japanese struck. He was blown, naked, into the water… and helped others swim ashore on Ford Island. Note, if you can see the detail, that those are brass claws, just above my left hand… meaning that we had leather slings… field marching pack, one canteen…

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CO Driver

While stationed at Camp Hansen 1963-1964 I drove for the CO of the 9th Marines, Col. Early. He was even tempered most of the time except when we passed a Marine who didn’t salute. Regardless of rank, they were in for a major ass-chewing. In 1964 I drove for Lt.General Victor Krulak while on his tour of bases in Okinawa. He also became enraged when military did not salute, regardless of the rank or service. He was even more vicious than Col Early was.

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Addressing a Senior Officer

During 1869/1970, as a Captain I served as the Aide de Camp to the Commanding General of the 1st Marine Division, Danang, Vietnam.
I always greeted the General with Good Morning General.
As during his entire career, WW2, Korea, and Vietnam earlier as a Colonel and Regimental Commander, he had been addressed as Sir. He has 30 years of being called Sir.
We have few Generals in the Corps, and to achieve the rank of General, it just seemed appropriate to me to call him General. My greeting was always returned with a smile.
Thank You Major General Edwin B Wheeler, you were all that, and much more. Semper Fi

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Dignity

While not a Salute story, it does involve something akin to behavior that some might salute; or not. While stationed at Marine Barracks, U. S. Naval Ammunition Depot, Hingham, MA, (1956-1957)and serving as a Sergeant of Marines, the CO asked me to deliver a parcel to his quarters on board the Depot, and instructed me to use the back door. Some background: Sometime during the first month there, I walked into town to cash my paycheck (we got paychecks!) and on the way, a female with children stopped and asked me if I wanted a ride, I did, and she asked me how long I had been stationed at the MB, etc.,(I was in uniform) and I politely answered and let it go at that. I did not use the back door; I thought it was not within the dignity of a Marine Sergeant to do. The CO’s wife answered in a nightgown and robe; at 0930. I delivered the parcel and beat feet out of there.
At the time, I had no intention of re enlisting in the Marine Corps. I took my release from active duty, but later re enlisted, visited the MB, Hingham, and I asked my OIC why I had been given such low Conduct and Proficiency marks which were the life blood of Composite Scores in those times. He stated that I had performed at the 4.8 level, but that the CO demanded the SRB entries of: 4.5, 3.8; 4.0, 3.5; 4.5, 4.0. My pro&con marks prior to being stationed at the MB were consistently at the 4.5 to 4.7 range. My next duty station was at the Marine Barracks, U. S. Naval Shipyard, Portsmouth, NH where for two years my average pro&con marks were 4.9, 5.0 for two years! And later at 2ndBn., 6th Marines, (4.7, 4.7) The problem: my OIC told me that the the CO’s wife told him that while she was giving me a ride to town to cash my check that I was LEERING at her. Hard to believe, even though I lived through it. Many years later I met that CO, he was a colonel and I was a warrant officer, he acted like I was one of his long lost best friends. I had to bite my tongue, almost clean in half. Semper Fi

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MARINE OF THE WEEK // Led men from three countries through a five hour firefight

MARINE OF THE WEEK // Led men from three countries through a five hour firefight

Gunnery Sgt. Richard Jibson
1st Marine Division
Operation Enduring Freedom, Afghanistan
Award: Navy Cross

On 28 May 2012 Gunnery Sergeant Jibson was advising a 53-man coalition force of Georgian, Afghan, and United States personnel during the clearing of an Afghan village. When some Marines who were reducing an improvised explosive device came under small arms fire, Gunnery Sergeant Jibson unhesitatingly placed himself between the Marines and the enemy, returning fire and allowing them to safely reach cover. Throughout the multiple engagements over the ensuing five hours, he bravely left covered positions and crossed open terrain many times under withering small arms and machine gun fire to provide suppressive fire, inspire his comrades, and direct the fire and maneuver of the entire coalition force. When a fellow Marine was shot in the head by an enemy sniper, Gunnery Sergeant Jibson fearlessly charged into a hail of enemy machine gun fire, pulled the exposed wounded Marine to cover, and then assisted a corpsman in rendering emergency measures to stabilize him. Amid the chaos, he arranged for reinforcements, casualty evacuation, and close air support. His courageous leadership, composure under fire, and tactical expertise led to successful extraction of the force with minimal loss of life. By his bold and decisive actions, undaunted courage, and complete dedication to duty, Gunnery Sergeant Jobson reflected great credit upon himself and upheld the highest traditions of the Marine Corps and the United States Naval Service.

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Saluting Officers in Official Sedans

I graduated from MCRD San Diego in November of 1959. I was selected as the Honor Man of my Platoon 156. At the graduation ceremony I was presented my certificate by Col R. W. Boyd, Commanding Officer Recruit Training Command. After graduation and ITR at Camp Pendleton I received my orders to go to MCB 29 Palms. After 1 year one of my buddies Cpl Kosloski who was the driver for Col Boyd was being discharged in about a month.
Col. Boyd asked him to find a new driver. Cpl Kosloski asked me if I wanted the job. At first I was hesitant because as a young marine I kind of feared Officers and this was a Col. that I would be driving for. Kosloski told me that Col Boyd was a great man to drive for and that driving the Col would be my only job. I would carry my liberty card with me and when the Col was off, I was off. Hearing this I went to an interview with the Col. Kosloski and I entered the Col’s office and Kosloski introduced me to the Col. The Col asked me if Potocki is a Polish name and I said yes sir. The Col then thanked Kosloski for bringing him another Polish marine and further stated that if I was as good as he was I would be his new driver. I drove along with Kosloski until he was discharged so I could learn the ropes.

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Pleasant Memories of Key West

S/Sgt Hites’s photo of the Truman Annex brought back memories of how I ended up in the Corps.
I was born and raised in Key West and I’m a 5th generation “Conch” (Native Islander). My mothers’ family where a long line of fisherman, shrimpers, sponge divers and so on. If it came from the ocean they did it.
My Dad was from Dennison, Texas and enlisted it the Corps to get off of the farm. Dad was wounded at Guadalcanal and latter at Tarawa. His wounds from Tarawa would send him to the Naval Hospital at Key West where he met my Mom who was working as a nurse. When my Dad’s wounds healed he was sent to the Marine Barracks where he stood guard duty until the war ended.
As a little kid my friends and I would follow the Marines running in formation along the island perimeter but they were too fast for us to last very long. As I got older we would stay with them a few steps behind the formation and we would tell ourselves that we would someday become Marines.
One morning my brother and I got up early to run with the formation and we were told by Marine sentry’s that the beach was off limits, it was the first day of the Cuban missile crisis.
As time went on we would bring the Marines on duty fresh coconuts, conch fritters and boletes.
The year 1965 would change my life forever. The draft board was breathing down my neck and I wasn’t about to go into the Army or any other branch of the service, not so much because my Dad was a Marine, but because of what I had seen and done thru the years at the Marine Barracks.
Major Black did my enlistment since the nearest recruiting office was 250 miles away in Miami, Florida.
A few days latter I was a young maggot on is way to Paris Island and the next twenty- five years would be an adventure of a lifetime.
Today I am an old retired Marine, retired high school teacher living in Amarillo Texas… how things change.

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The History Behind These Flags

My name is Gene Crabtree. Retired GySgt (pictured on left). Recently I was asked by Jimmy Dupuy (pictured on right), if I could assist him with folding these two flags. I told him it would be an honor and I would be proud to assist him. He began to tell me the history of these flags. He found these flags in a box that he received after his mother passed away, they were not folded and he wanted to put them in Shadow Boxes. The flag I am holding is his Great-Grandfather’s William Curry Chisolm’s flag. He served in WWI. This flag has 48 stars, his Great-Grandfather passed away in 1926. The flag that Jimmy is holding is for his Father, Joseph Steven Dupuy. Mr. Jimmy served in the U.S. Marine Corps from ’65-’69. I can’t tell you the honor that this gave me and the sense of pride to assist in this Flag Folding.

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The Salute And Marine Corps Policy

After reading Cpl Bill Reed and LCpl Art Monterari’s failed salute stories, I wanted to share mine. While stationed at Camp LeJune I was a warehouse supply clerk. There was a LT that worked in the office in my warehouse. Every morning when she would get to work, I would see her drive up and go over to the dock to wait for her to walk by. One morning my OIC was walking in with her, and I said the same thing I did every day, Good Morning Lieutenant. My OIC said how about Good Morning Sir? I then said one of the dumbest things I ever said on active duty, She outranks you so I was not talking to you. I actually stated the Marine Corps policy states when addressing a group of officers, you only address the senior officer, but I could see on his face he heard the first way. To which she said he is correct. Needless to say I was on his sh-t list after that until I left to go to Desert Shield with CSSD-40. I never once in the 2-1/2 years that I worked with her called her ma’am, always Lieutenant. That was one of the most beautiful women I ever met in the Corps.

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