US Navy Corpsman KIA in Afghanistan

Discussion in 'US' started by jumpinjarhead, Aug 29, 2010.

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  1. DOD Identifies Navy Casualty

    *********** The Department of Defense announced today the death of a sailor who was supporting Operation Enduring Freedom.

    *********** Petty Officer 3rd Class James M. Swink, 20, of Yucca Valley, Calif., died Aug. 27 while supporting combat operations in Helmand province, Afghanistan.* Swink was a hospital corpsman assigned to 2nd Marine Division, II Marine Expeditionary Forces.
     
  2. RIP. Condolances to family and friends.
     
  3. Navy Corpsman - long-haired, loud-mouthed, disrepectful SOBs who would walk through the fires of hell to save a wounded Marine.
     
  4. Of course the "long hair" is a relative thing. To our British colleagues they no doubt are likely assumed to be skinheads. The last part of your post is all too true and accounts for the high rate of corpsmen who become casualties in spite of an etched in stone ethos of Marines to protect their "Docs." There is a Marine infantry unit feeling pretty low tonight at having lost theirs. Those were perhaps the hardest to deal with in my experience.
     
  5. Well, to quote the third part of the Navy-Marine Corps-Coastie Team: You've got to go out, you don't have to come back.

    I've no doubt his unit will be honoring him in their own way, and I'll leave them to do that in peace.
     
  6. Indeed so. Thanks for your posts.
     
  7. Forgive my chipping in.

    Now I've not had much experience of our spam counterparts but what they consider understatement we would seem to consider hyperbole. US marines in particular are very 'full' of themselves to my way of thinking. Not a criticism, they're a force to be reckoned with even if I don't buy the hype they put out about themselves (nor the hype we Brits put out about ourselves tbh).

    The point I'm trying to make is this; US Marines (like us all) consider themselves to be the best at what they do and ain't quiet about it. So when they sing the praises of others as being better than themselves I listen in - found this years ago on the 'net and it's stuck with me even if it does seem a bit 'Hollywood'.

    Navy Corpsman
    In August of 1942, the first major USMC assault landings against the Japanese Empire occurred in the Solomon Islands, Pacific. The island chosen for the invasion was Guadalcanal.

    As they moved inland, four Marines were walking point into the jungle. Advancing into an open area without cover, they came under heavy fire from the entrenched Japanese. All four Marines were wounded but managed to crawl into a shell crater, about fifty yards from where they had emerged from the jungle.

    A Hospital Corpsman ran from cover into the crater with the wounded Marines, and ran back to cover, under fire. Having dressed the wounds of the Marine, he sprinted back for another, only this time he was hit. Not stopping to dress his own wounds, he carried the second Marine to cover receiving a second wound. After giving aid to the Marine, the Corpsman was hit for a third time going into the crater. Staggering toward the treeline with the third Marine, he was again struck by enemy fire.

    When the third Marine's wounds were dressed, the Corpsman started after the last Marine in the crater. The Corpsman still had not stopped to care for his own wounds. In a final valiant effort, he stumbled toward the crater, where he was brought down by concentrated enemy machine gun fire. He lunged forward into the crater falling across the fourth Marine, finally giving up his life.

    Reaching up to his own bleeding wounds, the Marine wrote on the back of the Corpsman's bullet riddled shirt,

    "WHERE ANGELS AND MARINES FEAR TO TREAD, THERE YOU'LL FIND A CORPSMAN DEAD."

    This was that dying Marine's final tribute to his shipmate's supreme sacrifice in fulfilling his oath, "TO AID THE WOUNDED, IN THEIR MOMENT OF NEED."

    I don't think I've added anything to a condolence thread before, but RIP. Sincerely.
     
  8. Your interest and your kind post is appreciated---corpsmen cannot be over-praised. But the bit about our being "full" of ourselves? Harumph.
     
  9. You missed the adjacent "not a critcism..." bit.

    Editted as not in keeping with the sentiment of the thread.
     
  10. I was kidding as to my last sentence but as you said not in keeping with the thread.
     
  11. Condolences from an ex-medic. May he rest in peace.
     
  12. Goatman

    Goatman LE Book Reviewer

    Sincere condolences to family, friends and comrades:

    'Has anybody seen, my old friend John
    Can you tell me where he's gone?
    He saved a lotta people - but it seems the good die young
    I just looked around - and he was gone....'


    Per Arduis Fidelis
     
  13. Another good man gone. Rest easy Marine.
     
  14. Another sad loss for our friends across the water RIP and my thoughts are with the familie at this sad time
     
  15. Absolutely. And I would walk on broken glass, on fire, under fire, drunk, with no weapon to save a corpsman. To us Marines, in the middle of shit, they were gods. From a cut to getting a 7.62 round in the stomach. I gave my corpsman everything in the field; chocolate chip cookies, et al. Still would. They saved countless number of Marines and god bless them.