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(#2001-35) - Topics This Issue:
1) America mourns victims of terrorism
2) Navy-Marine Corps Teams Assists in Rescue at World Trade Center
3) Building A Clinic
4) HMM-266 Play Fundamental Role In Operaton Rapid Cheetah
5) Recruit leaves farm field for infantry field
6) Strike a pose SgtMaj. DuBose
Date: Sat, 15 Sep 2001 16:08:09 -0700
Subject: America mourns victims of terrorism
Submitted by: Headquarters Marine Corps
Story by Lance Cpl. John R. Lawson, III
HEADQUARTERS MARINE CORPS, WASHINGTON, D.C.(September 14, 2001) -- Jets
landing at Washington's Reagan National Airport typically approach by flying
over the Potomac River, so Cpl. Nicola Morrison couldn't figure out why a
Boeing 757 belonging to American Airlines was flying perpendicular to the
river and low.
Corporal Morrison was standing at a bus stop outside the Pentagon Tuesday
morning when one of the four jet airliners hijacked by terrorists made its
suicide run and claimed the lives of an estimated 190 people.
"I said, 'Oh my God, the plane is going to crash into the Pentagon!" Cpl.
As soon as Cpl. Morrison realized what was about to happen, she did as all
Marines are trained to do when an explosion is imminent. "I dropped to the
ground," she said.
"I thought it was an accident," Cpl. Morrison said, recalling her first
"It took me a minute to [collect] myself," Cpl. Morrison continued. Once she
sorted out her thoughts and had a chance to talk with some people, she
realized that she had witnessed part of the terrorist attack that included
the destruction of the World Trade Center in New York City.
Corporal Morrison works in the Marine Corps's aviation office, which is in
the Pentagon. Until last week, Cpl. Morrison's unit had its office near the
Pentagon's west side, where the terrorists crashed the hijacked plane. As
fate had it, Cpl. Morrison, a resident of Adelphi, Md., and her fellow
Marines were relocated over the weekend to office space on the opposite side
of the Pentagon.
As soon as the shock wore off, the Jamaican born corporal began to seethe.
"Basically, I was angry," she said. "I don't think it's fair for people to
take innocent lives like that."
While no Marines were killed, 64 blameless people on the airliner and
approximately 126 military personnel and supporting civilians working in the
Pentagon lost their lives.
The Army was hit especially hard.
Glen Davis is a logistics contractor who works with Marine Corps Systems
Command in Quantico, Va. His daily work gives him a strong bond with the
Marines, but only a year ago he retired as a lieutenant colonel with 20
years of service in the Army.
His last station had him working with the Deputy Undersecretary of the Army.
Consequently, he worked right near the impact area. "I know of a couple of
people who are still missing," Davis said.
Shortly after the attack, Davis requested and got a week off from his job so
that he could come to the Pentagon and perform his duties as a Red Cross
volunteer. "Marine Corps Systems Command was very generous in letting me
go," he said.
Now, operating with little sleep, he is helping to ensure that victims of
the attack and workers at the crash site get any food, clothing, or
counseling that they might need.
"Everyone who is a United States citizen is upset and wants to do
something," Davis said.
Helping hands have come from far and wide, with the Salvation Army and even
McDonalds providing comfort for those affected by the horrendous attack on
Volunteers have come from as far away as Spruce Pine, in western North
Carolina. Eddie Williams, a former Marine, and about 30 of his friends with
the North Carolina Baptist Men left home Tuesday night. By Wednesday
morning, they were providing hot meals for workers and victims at the site.
Williams entered the Marine Corps in 1968 and left the Corps in 1976 after
finishing a recruiting tour.
"We're trying to take care of those who are doing the rescue," he said.
On Thursday, Marines recovered a Marine Corps flag from the impact area that
- strangely - went untouched. Seeing a Marine proudly carry the red and gold
flag away from the rubble moved Williams.
"That kind of touches you," he said.
Then he added, "Once a Marine, always a Marine."
Date: Sat, 15 Sep 2001 16:11:34 -0700
Subject: Navy-Marine Corps Teams Assists in Rescue at World Trade Center
Submitted by: 1st Marine Corps District
Story by Sgt John Neal
NEW YORK(September 12, 2001) -- When two airliners impacted the Twin Towers
of the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001, fire and rescue teams from
across New York City rushed to aid the victims of an act of terrorism.
Following the collapse of the Twin Towers, those who were doing the rescuing
suddenly found themselves needing to be rescued.
In addition to more fire and rescue teams from the five boroughs, 14 Navy
corpsmen called up from the reserves by 2nd Battalion, 25th Marines here in
Garden City, N.Y., and one Marine gunnery sergeant, loaded two vans with
first aid supplies and meals-ready-to-eat, and headed for the ruins of the
World Trade Center.
For the sailors and Marine who rushed to lower-Manhattan, the scene at
"ground zero" was surreal; especially for those who had been to the World
Trade Center prior to the attack.
"I was there a couple months ago," said Petty Officer 2nd Class Alexander
Valdez, a naval reservists from New York. "I went to this beautiful mall
there, and now it's ... it's unbelievable."
Other, more veteran sailors likened the experience to another infamous
terrorist attack in American history.
"I was in Beirut and this looked just like it," said one corpsman. "It looks
just like what happened 20 years ago."
For nearly 24 hours, the sailors and Marine assisted rescue workers with
their injuries, and helped in searching for survivors as well as recovering
"I hooked up with the firemen and searched the mall area by crawling around
in the debris with a flashlight," said Gunnery Sgt. John M. Leech, a prior
service recruiter stationed in Garden City. "There was all sorts of debris
and smoke, and alarms and buzzers were going off, but we didn't find anyone."
Adding to the confusion brought on by the debris, smoke and noises that
filled the World Trade Center, Leech says rescue workers had to work through
myriad of feelings and emotions.
"Everyone was in awe, complete shock," said Leech. "Everyone was real
somber, real sad."
While the Navy-Marine Corps team worked to recover survivors of the attack,
another group of Marines in Staten Island were helping victims to shore off
the ferryboats from Manhattan. Marine Staff Sgt. Matthew Olivolo, the
marketing and public affairs representative for Recruiting Station New York,
and recruiters from Recruiting Substation Staten Island, were among those
who helped attack victims disembark the ferries.
"There were a ton of people there," said Olivolo the day after the attack.
"A ton of firemen and rescue workers after the towers collapsed, too. They
all had the same look on their face - utter shock."
Rescue efforts are still going on in the city, as workers are digging
through the tons of debris in search of survivors. The Marines and sailors,
meanwhile, have resumed a standby position, waiting for command from higher
headquarters to continue with relief operations.
Date: Sat, 15 Sep 2001 16:13:29 -0700
Subject: Building A Clinic
Submitted by: 24th MEU
Story by Cpl. Matthew Roberson
GUSICA, Kosovo(September 14, 2001) -- Marines and Sailors of the 24th Marine
Expeditionary Unit (Special Operations Capable) are working in Kosovo to
build and repair structures that will be here long after they are gone. Some
of these structures include bridges, roads, schools and medical clinics.
Engineers from the MEU Service Support Group-24 are working to refurbish the
only clinic in Gusica, Kosovo during the MEU's deployment to Kosovo for
Operation Rapid Cheetah.
"When we started working, the windows had holes in them, the floors needed
to be redone, the building needed a new roof, electricity, and running
water. We pretty much had to start from scratch," said Sgt. Joshua Engelking
an engineer with MSSG-24. "We bought all of our supplies for the clinic from
the local community. That way we were putting money into the community where
we were building the clinic."
The job of rebuilding the clinic was originally going to be contracted out
to a U.S. company, but the decision was made to give the job to 24th MEU
"We're probably saving the Army close to $10,000," said Engelking. "We've
found a lot of good deals in the local community. One man had just finished
redoing the roof on his house and had taken off all of the old shingles. We
talked him into selling us the old shingles, which were still in good shape,
for only 25 cents apiece. That alone probably saved a couple hundred dollars."
Though the Marines are cutting corners and getting supplies a lot more
cheaply, no expense is spared when it comes to quality.
"We've installed a new walkway with a ramp to enable older people and people
in wheelchairs to be able to use the clinic," said Engelking. "We also put
up a fence to keep the animals out, and we installed a modern bathroom. The
clinic has two sinks with their own hot-water heaters, that way if one goes
out they still have hot water."
The project of rebuilding the clinic was given to the Marines through the
Humanitarian Assistance Program on Camp Bondsteel, Kosovo.
"The woman who owns the clinic is a registered nurse and lives in the
building beside the clinic," said Engelking. "She couldn't afford to repair
the clinic on her own, so she went through the assistance program on
"I think the community and the owner are more than pleased with the job we
have done," said Engelking.
To leave their own lasting impression on the clinic, the Marines put an
American flag on the left hand side of the entrance, and on the right hand
side is a group photo of all the Marines and Sailors that participated in
Follow the 24th MEU (SOC) deployment on their website at www.usmc.mil/24meu.
Date: Sat, 15 Sep 2001 16:14:56 -0700
Subject: HMM-266 Play Fundamental Role In Operaton Rapid Cheetah
Submitted by: 24th MEU
Story by LCpl Jeff Sisto
PRISTINA, Kosovo(September 14, 2001) -- Nearly every mission that the
Marines and Sailors of the 24th MEU (SOC) have undertaken thus far in Kosovo
has involved the support of Marine Medium Helicopter Squadron (HMM)-266
(Rein). As the Aviation Combat Element (ACE) for the MEU, they have
performed a variety of tasks, all essential to the success of Operation
Only the composite squadron's CH-53E Super Stallions and AH-1W Cobras were
brought to Kosovo from USS Kearsarge to support the operation. The Cobras
have furnished Battalion Landing Team (BLT) 2/8 Marines with an added
security element during patrols and cordon and search operations, while the
CH-53Es are used for transporting troops and supplies anywhere in the
Multinational Brigade East sector of Kosovo. Neither of these aircraft has
been seen in Kosovo since 1999 and their sudden forward presence is
"When we first got here, the border [to Macedonia] was closed, so we helped
by taking conex boxes back and forth between Camp Able Sentry and here,"
said LCpl. Seth Conbeer, a CH-53E crew chief, from Pottstown, PA.
Since the border has opened up again, the ACE continues on with regularly
scheduled missions and has also been afforded the opportunity to conduct
some unique training missions.
"We have definitely got some external training out here. We have been able
to do a lot of Mountain Area Landings (MALs)," said Maj. Mark Oberg, CH-53E
pilot, from Hermann, MO. "It's actually been a blast," he said.
In many ways, the squadron plays a utility role for the MEU. For example,
every day at 3 p.m. a CH-53E takes off from Camp Bondsteel and flies over to
a landing pad where they pick up six Marines from MEU Service Support Group
(MSSG)-24. There, they load up the evening meal to be delivered to Marines
billeted at other camps. The helicopter stops at four or five different BLT
patrol bases and waits while Marines form a chain to unload hotboxes and
pans of fresh chow and then load up the empty ones onto the aircraft. The
exchange is completed in a matter of minutes and then it's off to the next
After all the hot chow is transported out to the troops and the MSSG Marines
are dropped off back at Camp Bondsteel, the aircraft returns to each patrol
base to transport Marines to their necessary destinations. Marines coming
out of the field wait by a clearing on a mountain while the aircraft lands
and another platoon exits the bird to replace them. In a couple of hours,
the CH-53E may move up to two hundred Marines between the different camps
and the field.
Whether the mission calls for close air support from AH-1W Cobras flying
over a cordon and search operation, or the capabilities of a Super Stallion
to fast rope a platoon of BLT Marines into the field, the ACE plays a
critical role in the 24th MEU (SOC)'s execution of Operation Rapid Cheetah.
Follow the 24th MEU (SOC) deployment on their website at www.usmc.mil/24meu.
Date: Sat, 15 Sep 2001 16:16:58 -0700
Subject: Recruit leaves farm field for infantry field
Submitted by: MCRD San Diego
Story by Cpl. Christopher A. Raper
MARINE CORPS RECRUIT DEPOT SAN DIEGO, Calif.(Sept. 14, 2001) -- Graduation
seemed almost an intangible dream to PFC Joseph L. Fredricks during the
first few days of recruit training.
When Fredricks entered into the world of recruit training he was a quiet
recruit with little self-confidence and a very timid personality. These
traits made for a tough adjustment to an environment hinged on immediate
discipline, endurance and constant stress.
"I was really wondering what I had gotten myself into when the drill
instructor came on the bus and began his speech. By the time I had made it
to the footprints I was terrified. Everything happened so fast. I was really
nervous and kind of scared," commented Fredricks as he looked back on that
After the shock of having his head shaved, his clothes exchanged for
camouflage utilities and his identity, as he knew it, stripped away,
Fredricks got his first taste of military life.
Growing up on a little farm in Alma, Kan., Fredricks woke up to the sound of
a rooster crowing and the smell of livestock. Now he is greeted by the sound
of a trumpet and the musty stench of around 70 recruits.
Fredricks got his incentive to join the Corps from his big brother, LCpl.
Jon F. Fredricks. "I was looking for a challenge in my life and I have
always looked up to my older brother," said the graduating Marine. "He is a
Marine and seems to love being in the Corps. I didn't think that I could go
wrong following in his footsteps."
Once the training had truly begun, Fredricks quickly adapted to the
environment and settled right into the swing of things. He trained hard and
constantly worked to lose the weight he needed to in order to meet the
height and weight standards set for him by the Marine Corps. He was able to
lose more than 45 pounds and improve his confidence dramatically.
Without being told, Fredricks would step up and assist the squad leaders
from anything to barracks cleanup to long humps. He seemed to provide the
driving force and motivation for the platoon and did what he could to help
out his fellow recruits.
Fredricks has shown the most improvement from beginning to end and deserves
to claim the title of United States Marine.
Date: Sat, 15 Sep 2001 16:18:53 -0700
Subject: Strike a pose SgtMaj. DuBose
Submitted by: MCRD San Diego
Story by Cpl. Justin R. Carter
MARINE CORPS RECRUIT DEPOT SAN DIEGO, Calif.(Sept. 14, 2001) -- They walked
on to the stage, like "desperados". Their shoulders were thrown back and
their muscles bulged. Their bodies glistened under the stage lights. Then
they started to flex.
Marine Corps Air Station Miramar's MCCS Semper Fit recently hosted a Body
Building and Fitness Championship sanctioned by the National Gym
Association, Sept. 7, at the base theater. Both men and women showed up at
the competition to see who had the leanest and best built body.
Lightweight, middleweight and heavyweight competitors participated in the
Men's Open, Men's Novice, Men's Masters and Military divisions of the
Three Marines from the Depot entered the tournament and represented MCRD.
William Dubose Jr., sergeant major of Headquarters and Service Battalion,
Lenroy C. Cummings, chief cook at Mess Hall 569 and Ron T. Walton, S-1
chief, 2nd Bn., all took to the stage as they competed against other
The day for the three men started off at noon with the contestant check-in.
After that they headed to the changing room, where they oiled their bodies
down and began to work out their muscles.
At 1 p.m. there was a pre-judging. All three Depot Marines walked onto the
stage with confidence, even though it was Cummings' and Walton's first time
in a body building championship. The actual judging happened during the
night show. The preliminary judging helped the newcomers develop their
confidence, leaving them pumped for the night competition.
Though it was Cummings' first time, he did not have a problem when it came
down to the competition. Cummings placed first in the three divisions he
participated in, lightweight military, open and novice.
"Bodybuilding is very different from other sports. Each sport has it's
challenges but this sport really challenges you to know your body," said
Dubose also fared well in the competition getting second place in the
middleweight military, masters and open divisions. Dubose has been competing
in competitions since 1996. This was his tenth competition and the first
time in a while he had not finished on top.
"Out of the ten events I've been in, I've won first place seven or eight
times," said Dubose.
He went on to explain that the three Depot Marines only trained at about
eighty percent for this competition. Miramar was just a warm-up for the men,
who plan on competing in the Border State Bodybuilding Championship in a week.
"We spent about two and a half hours a day working out in the gym," said
Though the men fared well in the competition they believe that they will be
in much better shape for the upcoming competition.
According to Dubose, the key to bodybuilding is dieting. The better the
diet, the more lean and cut the athletes will look.
"Dieting was hard for me," said Cummings, "I'm used to eating what ever I
want when I want, and in bodybuilding you can't do that."
After the upcoming competition Dubose plans on taking a break.
"My body needs a break," said the 43 year-old sergeant major.
He won't stop bodybuilding for good though. Dubose's goal is to enter a
bodybuilding competition at the age of 50 and place in the top three.
Though bodybuilding may seem hard, Dubose explained that once you start
working out it becomes a daily habit.
"The workout becomes a habit after a while," said Dubose. "The challenge is
to discipline yourself to eat properly."
As the time comes close to the next bodybuilding championship, the three
Depot Marines continue hitting the gym each day, watching their diet and
getting ready to flex again.
End firstname.lastname@example.org Digest [09/15/2001 18:01]