Browsing: Veterans

Update: This event is open to all Marines, not just ones who fought in the Battle of Fallujah. A decade after the Battle of Fallujah, California-based Marines are holding a reunion and ceremony to honor those who were a part of one of the most significant fights in Iraq and some of the heaviest urban warfare in the Corps’ history. Members of  1st Marine Division is will host the Nov. 7 event for veterans ranging from privates to general officers at Camp Pendleton, California. Now-retired Lt. Gen. Richard Natonski, the commander of 1st MARDIV during the battle, is attending. By…

The near-unanimous lament coming from troops, widows, and Gold Star mothers would be hard not to hear if the sound of Iraq imploding wasn’t so deafening. One wife, whose husband went twice to Iraq, summed it up to Military Times nicely when Mosul was taken: “What a waste.” When Fallujah fell to ISIS militants last year, Business Insider defense writer Paul Szoldra, wrote “Tell me again, why did my friends die in Iraq?” His write-up got immediate attention, with members of the media even asking Army Chief of Staff Ray Odierno if he had read it. (Skip to the 15-minute mark…

[HTML1] We’ve uncovered a 2011 interview with Medal of Honor recipient Capt. John J. McGinty, III who recently passed away at age 73 in Beaufort, S.C. In the video by the publishers of ‘Medal of Honor: Portraits of Valor Beyond the Call of Duty’ McGinty recounts the harrowing 1966 battle for which he earned the medal. On July 15 of that year, his company was  in Quang Tri Province, Vietnam, when they were assaulted by wave after wave of a North Vietnamese Army battalion. He and his men narrowly survived the hours-long fight after calling in danger-close air support and…

A 92-year-old World War II veteran returned to Japan this week on a mission of peace: to return a flag he had taken in war some seven decades prior to its hometown. Stars and Stripes reported that Kenneth Udstad, formerly of 4th Marine Division, got the idea to return his Japanese war trophy — a Rising Sun flag — after hearing about another veteran who did the same. Udstad had taken the flag from a fallen Japanese soldier in 1944, and kept it among his possessions for 68 years. Udstad determined the flag’s origin by analyzing the Japanese characters on…

Something wonderfully awesome happened last night in San Francisco. In case you don’t recognize the guys in this photo, they are: * Paul Szoldra, an infantry Marine who left the Corps as a sergeant a few years ago and went on the create The Duffel Blog, a satirical website that pokes fun at the absurdities within military culture. * Retired Sgt. Maj. Carlton Kent, the 16th Sergeant Major of the Marine Corps and top enlisted adviser to two commandants. * Max Uriarte, also an infantry Marine, and the original terminal lance corporal who created the popular Terminal Lance cartoon series.…

What brings a proud and accomplished Marine veteran with a family to the point of ending it all? In a post this week on the New York Times’ At War blog, medically retired sergeant Thomas James Brennan describes in raw detail how he nearly became a statistic: one of the estimated 22 veterans a day who fall victim to suicide. Brennan, now a military reporter with the Daily News of Jacksonville, N.C., wrote he reached his point of despair Dec. 28, 2012, just days shy of medical retirement. He suffered a traumatic brain injury in Afghanistan in Nov. 2010, an…

Late last week, I got to celebrate the 238th Marine Corps birthday in style with living Marine Corps legends aboard the Odyssey, an elegant cruise boat docked at Washington, D.C.’s Southwest waterfront. This was the 13th year that brothers Robert and Scott Shaw have collaborated to host a distinctive birthday celebration afloat, with time-honored Marine Corps traditions and celebrated guests of honor. Robert, a former captain and past president of Odyssey Cruises, and Scott, a retired lieutenant colonel, both follow in the steps of their father, the late Robert W. Shaw Sr., who retired as a lieutenant colonel. They say…

Awhile ago, we brought you the story of Paul “Doc” Doolittle, a mild-mannered Scout leader from Colorado who set out an an ambitious mission Oct. 1 to walk 273 miles–a mile in honor of every name on the wall of the official Beirut Memorial in Jacksonville, N.C. This morning, on the dawn of the 30th anniversary of the Beirut bombings, Doolittle finished his walk at the wall. And he wasn’t alone. Though Doolittle, a former sergeant who served part of his enlistment as an Embassy Security Guard in Beirut following the bombings, expected his 23-day walk to be a private…

On the viral YouTube video beat, check out this showdown between a former Marine grunt and Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) In the video, Bryan Bates, who identified himself as a veteran of Iraq and Afghanistan who also worked as a private security contractor with the Army Corps of Engineers, stands up at a Sept. 5 town hall in Tucson, Ariz., to ask McCain a tough question about military involvement in Syria. ” I am no stranger to Al Qaeda, their affiliates and the people of the region near Syria. I am here to tell you that I completely oppose any military…

In May we reported that the Philadelpia-area Smedley Butler chapter of the Marine Corps League had raised funds to buy a modest headstone for Maj. Samuel Nicholas, first leader of the Continental Marines. Nicholas, who was sworn in as the first commissioned officer in the Marine Corps on Nov. 5, 1775, is considered by some to be the de facto first commandant, although he never officially held the title. After he succumbed to yellow fever in 1790, he was buried in Philadelphia, but his grave was left unmarked according to the Quaker tradition, which he observed. Only recently did the…

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