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Seattle, Washington, United States
The Emerald City will play host to the fifth annual Marine Week, July 26 – August 3, 2014.
Marine Week is a celebration of Community, Country and Corps – providing the American public the unique experience to directly connect with hundreds of Marines.
Two Marine mess sergeants who served in World War I weren’t content with assignments in the States and through strenuous efforts had their classifications changed so they could be transferred to combat areas.*And so it may be said that a “fighting man’s life begins at 40,” for Sgts. George H. Mills and William Lawrence McCarthy sr. both attached to an MP company here.
Both Mills and McCarthy went through boot training at San Diego and were assigned to Terminal Island at Long Beach, Calif., for duty. They had enlisted in Class IVC which put them in non-com-batant service and limited their service lo the continental U. S.
Persistent efforts resulted in their transfer to Class 1118 to become part of FMF and eligible for combat duty. Both had to pass new physical examinations to be reclassified.
Mills, 44, served with the Army 27 years ago. His unit fought the Mexican forces which raided Columbus, N. M.
In World War I he was a line sergeant and served overseas.
He was a steward at Sun Valley, Ida., until enlistment.
McCarthy, 43, has one son serving in the Navy at Midway Island and a youngster at home. He enlisted in the Corps in 1918 when he was a railroad lineman in Chicago.
He trained at League Island, Philadelphia, saw duty at Quantico, Virginia, and was aboard the USS Mississippi in the Atlantic Ocean when the war ended.
From The May 1943 Issue Of The Marine Corps Chevron
The fighting continued, and counterattack followed attack. In June, the lines were again north of the 38th parallel. The following month, July 1951, an armistice appeared on the horizon. Communist and UN negotiators met to discuss armistice meetings. The truce talks continued periodically, while the fighting intermittently grew cold and flared hot.
During this time, both sides engaged in limited offensives across the entire front, mainly for the purpose of securing more territory, either for bargaining purposes or for better defensive positions. Extensive trench systems were dug, and log and earthen bunkers were built. The war at times became static while both sides awaited the results of the drawn-out truce negotiations. At other times the fighting reached ferocious intensity.
In March of 1952, the Marines moved from the eastern front to the western front in order to ensure the security of the section of the Allied line near Panmunjom, the site of truce talks. The 1st Marine Aircraft Wing, rendered outstanding service flying close support missions for the Marine Division as well as for other ground troops. Marine air support was constantly in demand by all frontline units.
(Today’s entry for Throwback Thursday. SHARING the post helps the site grow.)
Family Day Parris Island 16Sept2010.
I am reuniting with the daughter that I sent off a few months ago, and I am now meeting this young woman for the first time since she has become a United States Marine.
So perhaps I can be excused a momentary lack of situational awareness.
All morning long, I, wearing a maroon t-shirt to show that my new Marine was a female, had seen a slew of yellow t-shirts, worn by those who were showing their support for a family member or friend who was a male Marine.
This is the mindset I was operating under.
So when I was walking past a ramp on the parade deck, and I was greeted by two individuals wearing yellow shirts, I didn’t place any special significance on it.
So when one of these men caught my eye, and said to me “How are you doing?”, my reaction was one that was second nature to me.
I reached out, shook hands with him and the man with him and said:
“How am I doing??”
“I just watched my daughter be recognized as a United States Marine!”
“How the hell do you think I am doing?”
I’m doing GREAT!!”
With that, this gentleman looked me in the eye, said “Semper Fi”, and went on his way.
Sue, my wife, gave me a look, however, as I had seen that look thousands of times before during the course of our marriage, a look that said “I can’t believe you just did that”, I didn’t attach any special significance to it.
Until a bit later that is.
One of the things we did during our Family Day visit with PFC Holly was to pay a visit to her squad bay.
And as she was pointing out various things to Sue, Nick, and myself, a series of pictures mounted on the bulkhead caught my eye.
One picture in particular.
I called Sue over, pointed to the picture, and asked her “Honey, is that who I think it is?”
And she replied, “Yes Carl, that is the man you spoke to this morning.”
“If your head wasn’t in the clouds about Holly, you might have noticed what was written on the back of his shirt.”
I took another look at the picture, and although I have been unable to confirm it with 100% certainty, yeah, I’m pretty sure.
Yep, the man I had mouthed off to with my smart- ass remark was Brigadier General F.M. Padilla, the commanding general of MCRD Parris Island.
General Padilla, on the million-to-one chance that you learn of this article, I can only say this:
I may not shown you the level of respect I would have had I known who you were, but my answer to your question remains the same.
(Part of a continuing series of articles spotlighting United States Marines who have been recipients of America’s highest military award, the Medal of Honor.)
From the Presidential Citation:
LANCE CORPORAL KENNETH L. WORLEY
UNITED STATES MARINE CORPS
For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty while serving as a Machine Gunner with Company L, Third Battalion, Seventh Marines, First Marine Division in action against enemy forces in the Republic of Vietnam.
After establishing a night ambush position in a house in the Bo Ban Hamlet of Quang Nam Province, security was set up and the remainder of the patrol members retired until their respective watch. During the early morning hours of 12 August 1968, the Marines were abruptly awakened by the platoon leader’s warning that “Grenades” had landed in the house.
Fully realizing the inevitable result of his actions, Lance Corporal Worley, in a valiant act of heroism instantly threw himself upon the grenade nearest him and his comrades, absorbing with his own body, the full and tremendous force of the explosion.
Through his extraordinary initiative and inspiring valor in the face of almost certain death, he saved his comrades from serious injury and possible loss of life although five of his fellow Marines incurred minor wounds as the other grenades exploded.
Lance Corporal Worley’s gallant actions upheld the highest traditions of the Marine Corps and the United States Naval Service.
He gallantly gave his life for his country.
Infantrymen with 2nd Battalion, 25th Marine Regiment, load into an amphibious assault vehicle for troop movement duringannual reserve training, July 10. Marines with 2/25 conducted training evolutions to engage an enemy objective during Exercise Javelin Thrust 2012. Javelin Thrust is an annual large-scale exercise with 1st Marine Expeditionary Brigade at Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center Twentynine Palms, Calif., which allows active and reserve Marines and sailors from 38 states to traintogether as a seamless Marine air-ground task force.
Every branch of military service has a rich history, steeped in as much hard fact as fiction and lore.
Trying to separate reality from myth is hard for your average Marine. While all the other services can trace their songs’ lineage, the history of the “Marines Hymn” still holds mysteries for the experts. The Hymn is also commonly acknowledged to be the oldest anthem of all the U.S. services.
The Army’s song, “The Army Goes Rolling Along,” was first composed in 1908 by Army 1st Lt. Edmund L. Gruber, an artillery officer. The song was originally called “Caisson Song.” It stayed as an artillery march until it was dubbed the official song of the Army and paired with new lyrics in 1956.
“The U.S. Air Force” was originally composed in 1938 by Robert Crawford as part of a contest for the then-Army Air Division. Lyrics were changed in 1947 for the newly-formed U.S. Air Force.
“Anchors Aweigh” was written in 1906 by Charles A. Zimmerman, for a class in the Naval Academy. Over the years, it was adopted as the Navy’s official song.
The “Marines Hymn,” on the other hand, dates back to the mid-1800s. Most of the information on the composer and writer is lost in the sands of time.
According to lore, the songwriter was a Marine on duty in Mexico shortly after the Mexican–American War. Legend has it that he took the first verse, “From the Halls of Montezuma, To the Shores of Tripoli.” from the Marine Corps flag, which displayed those very words at that time.
The tune associated with the hymn also raises many questions because the composer isn’t known and the inspiration is still disputed.
Throughout history, composers will hear a tune they like and tweak to suit their purposes. To confirm this is where the Corps’ hymn came from, historians delved into correspondence between military officials of the time to try to confirm the origin of the famous tune.
In 1919, Warrant Officer John Philip Sousa wrote “The melody of the ‘Halls of Montezuma’ is taken from Offenbach’s comic opera, ‘Fenevieve de Brabant’ and is sung by two gendarmes,” according to information available on the Marine Corps Logistics Command website, http://www.logcom.usmc.mil.
“Maj. Richard Wallach, said that in 1878, when he was in Paris, France, the aria to which the Marines Hymn is now sung was a very popular one.”
Wallach also believed the hymn’s “aria” was from the opera “Genevieve de Brabant.”
But even with this correspondence, neither origin can be confirmed on this basis alone.
Although the Marines Hymn made an appearance around the 1800s, it didn’t have an official version until 1929, when then-Commandant of the Marine Corps Maj. Gen. John A. Lejeune authorized the hymn as we know it, except the first verse. The original fourth line read “On the land as on the sea.” That line wasn’t changed to “In the air, on land, and sea,” until 1942.
During the 100 years the hymn has existed, many interesting stories around it have surfaced. Some fact, some fiction, and others still up for debate.
One such story claims that Sir Winston Churchill, the British Prime Minister during WWII, and an admirer of the Marine Corps, was said to have showed his respect for U.S. Marines by reciting our hymn.
Another story, confirmed by the Library of Congress, states that on Aug. 16, 1918, an issue of the Stars and Stripes mentions a French officer mistaking Marines for a group of native Montezuma soldiers because of that first verse.
“A wounded officer from among the gallant French lancers had just been carried into a Yankee field hospital to have his dressing changed. He was full of compliments and curiosity about the dashing contingent that fought at his regiment’s left,” as written in the article.
“A lot of them are mounted troops by this time, he explained, for when our men would be shot from their horses, these youngsters would give one running jump and gallop ahead as cavalry. I believe they are soldiers from Montezuma. At least, when they advanced this morning, they were all singing ‘From the Halls of Montezuma, to the Shores of Tripoli.’”
No matter where it came from, or why, or who wrote it, or who first hummed the first notes, the hymn is as recognizable and ingrained in the spirit of the Corps as are the dress blues, or Eagle, Globe and Anchor, or brotherhood itself.