The Good Ship Lollipop

I don’t like to swim in the ocean. Sand gets in places it was never meant to be. That may be ironic since I wound up in the Marines. I had never been on any water craft bigger than a 15-foot fishing boat when I joined the Corps in 1958, so I had never experienced sailing on the deep blue. By the time I shipped over to Okinawa I had only flown commercial a couple times on Bonanza Airlines between San Diego and Phoenix – the first time on a DC-3, the second on a small turbo-prop. I hadn’t experienced air sickness either time so I was unprepared for what was ahead. Continue reading “The Good Ship Lollipop”

read more

Memories Of A Kaneohe Marine

Foreword by Dave Trojan, Aviation Historian

These stories were collected, compiled and edited over several years. Some of them have appeared in the Sgt. Grit newsletters at, however this is the first time they have been gathered together to give readers a firsthand account of what life was like at MCAS Kaneohe during the early 1960s. Norm Spilleth was a Marine Corps Corporal and Plane Captain from 1960 to 1964 who served in VMA-212, the Devil Cats. Continue reading “Memories Of A Kaneohe Marine”

read more

It Was The Marines For Me

Plt 3008, MCRD SD
28 JUN – 26 AUG 1967

Growing up, I always knew I wanted a career in military service. From age 14 on I knew it was the Marines for me. “You’re a scrawny, short, skinny kid. The Marines would eat you up and spit you out.” I’d heard that from folks my age and older whenever I would tell them I wanted to be a Marine. My closest friends shared the same desire and we had The Guidebook for Marines, knew our general orders and so forth. Continue reading “It Was The Marines For Me”

read more

Remembering 9-11-01

Today we remember the 2977 lives that were lost, over 6000 injured, and the numerous lives impacted globally by the heinous act of terror carried out on American soil 15 years ago. We further remember the men and women who went forth and located, closed with and destroyed the enemy in Afghanistan, Iraq, and in other foreign lands. Since 9/11/01, many have served, fought, and gave their lives to ensure that such acts of cowardice remain a distant threat to the people and the country that they love so dear. Continue reading “Remembering 9-11-01”

read more

Smallest Units In The Marine Corps

When it came to assignments in the Corps I never caught much of a break. Out of boot camp I got Aviation Ordnance School. (not many civilian uses for that knowledge). I finished 2nd in the class but never used the skills. When I made my 1st muster with H&MS-24 at Cherry Pt., the Capt. asked if anyone could type. Continue reading “Smallest Units In The Marine Corps”

read more