USMC Dinner Honoring USMC KIA in Iraq and Afghanistan

#1
This slide show depicts one of a series of formal dinners recently hosted by the USMC where the NOKand Marine comrades are invited to the USMC National Museum (at USMC expense) to honor their fallen Marines. I know some of our hardened ARRSERs will find it too "soft" but I make no apologies as anything done in good taste to honor our fallen is appropriate as too often their sacrifice is so quickly forgotten after the funeral.

Remembering The Brave

In this connection an official USMC order was issued recently by the Commandant that requires an appropriate acknowledgement for USMC fallen ("those who have gone before") be made at any official USMC function (such as a specific toast at a mess night). Here is the order:

TO THOSE WHO HAVE GONE BEFORE

Date Signed: 4/11/2007
ALMAR Active Number: 020/07 2007
UNCLAS 111320Z APR 07
CMC WASHINGTON DC(UC)
TO AL ALMAR(UC
ALMAR 020/07
MSGID/GENADMIN/CMC WASHINGTON DC CMC//

SUBJ/TO THOSE WHO HAVE GONE BEFORE//

GENTEXT/REMARKS/1. TO BE A MARINE IS TO BE A PART OF SOMETHING
THAT REPRESENTS THE BEST OF OUR NATION. IT IS TO ACCEPT A WAY OF
LIFE THAT EMBODIES SELFLESS SERVICE - TO DEFEND THOSE WHO CANNOT
DEFEND THEMSELVES, TO THRIVE IN THE HARDSHIP AND SACRIFICE
EXPECTED OF AN ELITE WARRIOR CLASS, TO MARCH TO THE SOUND OF THE
GUNS, AND TO ABLY SHOULDER THE HERITAGE CREATED BY THOSE WHO HAVE GONE BEFORE US.

2. ONLY A FEW AMERICANS CHOOSE THE DANGEROUS AND NECESSARY WORK OF FIGHTING OUR NATION'S ENEMIES. AS A CONSEQUENCE OF THAT CHOICE, SOME HAVE PAID THE ULTIMATE PRICE, JOINING THE HONOR ROLL OF HEROES WHO BUILT THE NOBLE LEGACY OF OUR CORPS. FOR THOSE OF US WHO CARRY ON THAT LEGACY, IT IS OUR OBLIGATION TO HONOR THOSE
FALLEN MARINES. AS MARINES GATHER IN CELEBRATION OF OUR HISTORY,
WE GATHER IN THE SHADOWS OF GREATNESS - THOUGH OUR FALLEN CAN NO LONGER PARTICIPATE IN OUR TRADITIONS, THEY WILL ALWAYS BE A PART OF US AND WHO WE ARE.

3. THEREFORE, I AM DIRECTING THAT ALL UNIT MESS NIGHTS AND MARINE
CORPS BIRTHDAY BALL CELEBRATIONS INCLUDE WORTHY AND APPROPRIATE TRIBUTES TO OUR FALLEN COMRADES. SUBSEQUENT CHANGES TO THE DRILL AND CEREMONIES MANUAL WILL REFLECT THIS REQUIREMENT. THROUGH MEANINGFUL REMEMBRANCE, THE SACRIFICES OF "THOSE WHO HAVE GONE BEFORE" WILL NOT BECOME DISTANT MEMORIES, BUT WILL LIVE ALWAYS IN OUR WARRIOR CULTURE.

4. SEMPER FIDELIS, JAMES T. CONWAY, GENERAL, U.S. MARINE CORPS,
COMMANDANT OF THE MARINE CORPS//



 
#3
I know some of our hardened ARRSERs will find it too "soft" but I make no apologies as anything done in good taste to honor our fallen is appropriate as too often their sacrifice is so quickly forgotten after the funeral.
Not soft whatsoever.......
 
M

Mark The Convict

Guest
#4
I quite agree, not at all untoward. A heartfelt gesture at the very least, far more than might be expected of our political 'leaders'
 
#5
And a very nice slide show also. Thanks for posting JJH!

Here in Massachusetts there is a ceremony annually on November 11th in the "Hall of Flags" in the state Capitol building where flags of all Mass. regiments are displayed. The ceremony is led by the state Governor. All "Gold Star" mothers and wives are invited and each is presented with a rose by a member of their loved ones service. At one ceremony I attended a Gold Star mother was overlooked. When the Secretary of Veterans Services spotted this he whispered this to the Governor, the ceremony was halted and the Governor and Secretary walked to the woman and presented her with a rose. Quite moving to see.

Note for British friends: Since WW II the term Gold Star has been used as spouses/parents of the fallen are presented with a small rectangular pin with a red border, white background and gold star in the center.
 
#6
JJH - This is a moving recognition of fallen marines and those they left behind as I would expect of an organisation with the élan and ethos of the United States Marine Corps. "Once a marine always a marine." I am also impressed by the Commandant General's direction of a toast, "to those who've gone before us" at official USMC mess functions. I left the British Army 11 years ago prior to the sandpit campaigns in Iraq and Afghanistan and I don't know if the British Army or the Royals recognise the sacrifice of our fallen in the same way. I hope they do.

AHP
 
#8
JJH, please don't confuse the time served arsers with the chav gob shites, we've all buried our own.
I know and certainly meant no disrespect whatever to those ARRSERs who I hope understand the actual feeling I was trying to convey.

I hope is is clear by now that I have the UTMOST respect for the sacrifices of all our fellow warriors--US, Brit or any other who have fought with us, whether the "ultimate," or the horrific as in the case of my friend Dingerr and others. I for one will NEVER forget those who have gone before, during or after my time in the crucible.

Again, I make no apologies to those who make light of, or otherwise prefer not to have, such emotive expressions on ARRSE.
 
#9
I wish the British government/MoD had the same outlook on a soldiers sacrifice.

The MoD would chuck a few parachutes in an old gymnasium, have some scroats waiting on, as everyone sat round old tables, folding, wooden, 6ft.
 
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