Sunday, October 31, 2010

Saturday, October 30, 2010

74 Fallen Marines Remembered

A trumpet player in the Combat Center’s Band plays taps over the 74 memorial crosses during Regimental Combat Team 7’s memorial ceremony Oct. 15 at Lance Cpl. Torrey L. Gray Field. RCT-7 was deployed to Afghanistan
from Oct. 24, 2009 to Sept. 28, 2010.

Seventy-four military crosses line Lance Cpl. Torrey L. Gray Field during a memorial ceremony for Regimental Combat Team 7 Oct. 15. The total fallen consisted of 70 Marines, three sailors and one British civilian reporter.

“The only way that any of these men would have died in vain 
is if we give up in the effort that is currently succeeding in Afghanistan”

RCT-7 remembers 74 fallen brothers 

MARINE CORPS AIR GROUND COMBAT CENTER TWENTYNINE PALMS, Calif.   — Rows of military crosses solemnly lined Lance Cpl. Torrey L. Gray Field Oct. 15 during a memorial ceremony dedicated to the 74 men lost during to Regimental Combat Team 7’s recent deployment to Afghanistan. From October 24, 2009 to September 28, 2010, units attached to RCT-7 lost 70 Marines, three sailors, and one British journalist to the war overseas.

Seventy-three helmets were placed on 73 rifles while 73 dog tags hung over 73 new boots. There was a single white cross in the midst of them all, with a British flag placed beside it, a quiet reminder the United States is not alone in this war.

“The battlefield cross – its purpose, to show honor and respect for the fallen at the battle sight,” stated a narrator of the service. “Today its immediate need is to show respect for the fallen among the still living members of the unit.”

Regimental Commander Col. Randy P. Newman rose and spoke of the honor these 74 men showed on the battlefield.

“We pay tribute today to what these men gave, lives cut short but not unfulfilled,” Newman said. “Each man gave their lives in a noble effort to give back to the people of Afghanistan so they can determine their future and to increase the security of our own nation.”

As he spoke, the 74 crosses behind him held a reminder for every Marine in attendance of what it means to fight alongside one another to complete the Corps’ mission.

“Once the first drop of blood was shed by a Marine in Afghanistan, we became committed to remaining there for however long our nation desires there,” Newman said.

“Our Corps will remain there and will fight because that is what we do. They went on to the battlefield with the full understanding that we were 100 percent committed to what we were there for.

“The only way that any of these men would have died in vain is if we give up in the effort that is currently succeeding in Afghanistan,” Newman said.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Valour-IT 2010

Once again, it is time to ask people to donate to ValourIT
The program that provides computers with voice to text software and GPS locators to our wounded warriors.  These devices enable them to communicate and to regain a sense of freedom.

Over the years, I have written several pieces about ValourIT - archive

For a friendly competition between branches, you can donate or sign up at the links below

Marine Team

learn more
For more info on Team Marine - click here

Air Force Team

learn more
For more info on Team Air Force - click here

Navy Team

learn more
For more info on Team Navy - click here

Army Team

learn more
 For more info on Team Army - click here

See the competitive standings - here 

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

USS Cole (DDG 67) ~ 10 years ago

Ten years ago on October 12, a refueling stop in the port of Aden, Yemen, turned into a terrorist attack on the USS Cole.  The attack killed 17 sailors and wounded 39.  In this act of terrorism against the United States by the minions of Osama bin Laden, we were thrust ever farther into the War against Terrorism.

A tenth anniversary post from the USS Cole's commander, CDR Kirk S Lippold:

 Attack on the USS Cole left 17 sailors dead and 39 wounded

Electronics Technician Chief Petty Officer
Richard Costelow
Morrisville, Pennsylvania

Signalman Seaman Recruit
Cherone Louis Gunn,
Rex, Georgia

James Rodrick McDaniels,
Norfolk, Virginia

Seaman Recruit
Lakiba Nicole Palmer,
San Diego, California

Operations Specialist Second Class
Timothy Lamont Saunders,
Ringgold, Virginia

Andrew Triplett,
Macon, Mississippi

Seaman Apprentice
Craig Bryan Wibberley,
Williamsport, Maryland

Hull Maintenance Technician Third Class
Kenneth Eugene Clodfelter,
Mechanicsville, Virginia

Mess Management Specialist Seaman
Lakeina Monique Francis,
Woodleaf, North Carolina

Information Systems Technician Seaman
Timothy Lee Gauna,
Rice, Texas

Engineman Second Class
Marc Ian Nieto,
Fond Du Lac, Wisconsin

Electronics Warfare Technician Second Class
Ronald Scott Owens,
Vero Beach, Florida

Engineman Fireman
Joshua Langdon Parlett,
Churchville, Maryland

Fireman Apprentice
Patrick Howard Roy,
Keedysville, Maryland

Electronics Warfare Technician First Class
Kevin Shawn Rux,
Portland, North Dakota

Mess Management Specialist Third Class
Ronchester Mananga Santiago,
Kingsville, Texas

Gary Graham Swenchonis, Jr.,
Rockport, Texas

May we ever remember them.......

 Bringing the USS Cole home

USS Cole Memorial - Norfolk
The 17 granite slabs around the monoliths are in remembrance of the 17 who were murdered that day.
The Memorial sits at the berthing area for the USS Cole.
The families still wait for a memorial at Arlington National Cemetery and for the justice they deserve.

Obama Administration drops charges against Abd al-Rahim al-Nashiri, 
the alleged mastermind behind the USS Cole bombing and other terrorist attacks,
in February 2009.