THE CORPS WILL PROVIDE
provide a home for you. We take care of our own." This motivated me and cheered me up. I smiled and to my astonishment, the SDI smiled back. I decided right then that I would make the USMC my career.
The next week I applied my self and fired the second highest score of my Platoon. About two weeks later I received a letter from my Sweetheart in Oak Ridge. She informed me that her mother and step father were divorcing. Her mother had taken up with a Kentucky coal miner. I wrote her back a long letter and asked her to marry me, that we would have a struggle making ends meet, but we would survive. We were married on 10 May 55 while I was on recruit leave. We are still married. My first "permanent" duty station was Sea Duty aboard the new, first "Super Carrier," USS Forrestal (CVA-59). Being that I was one of only two Pfc's in the Marine Detachment, I was assigned plum duty as the Captain's Orderly. A year later I was promoted to Corporal (E-3) and assumed duties as a Cpl of the Guard.
There were four Sgts in the MarDet, and one of them, Sgt Robert (NMN) Smith, a Korean Vet, and the only "dark green Marine" aboard, took me under his wing and taught me how to be an NCO. He was my "Sea Daddy.," and taught me well. A year later I was promoted to Sgt (E-4), and having confidence in my abilities, I applied for DI School.
In 1958 I was a JDI in the 2nd RT Bn at P.I. and was in the same Company as SSgt Robert (NMN) Smith. We worked only one Platoon together, just the two of us. That Platoon won all the high honors a Recruit Platoon could win. I am forever indebted to Sgt Robert Smith.
Our son was born at the Naval Hospital in Beaufort in Sept, 1959. My wife and I continued our struggle. It finally eased up some after 6 years of service, when I was promoted to Sgt (E-5). Later, I applied for, and was accepted to OCS. Along the long road, I was always mentored and helped by superiors, and I, in turn, helped and mentored my subordinates. I received the honor of being allowed to lead Marine Grunts in combat in the Dominican Republic and in the Republic of South Vietnam. There is no greater bond among men than one that is forged in the crucible of combat; where men share all the horrors, discomfort, dangers, and noise, together as a team. This bond is real, it is strong, and it is forever. It confounds the understanding of all who have not experienced it. If God would turn my clock back 40 years, I would do it all again.
The worst fear of soldiers, sailors, and airmen is that they may be killed or maimed in combat. We Marines and our Navy Corpsmen are quite different. Our worse fear is that we may do, or fail to do something that would let our brothers down. Ordinary men, Marines and Corpsmen, do extraordinarily brave acts. They jump up, under fire, and run to the aid of a fallen brother.
Yes, our beloved Corps is a true Warrior Brotherhood, and our Corpsmen are a respected part of it. We look out for each other, always.
L. S. Green
Captain of Marines
This life is my choice.
I fight for freedom, I ask not for more.
My life is my God, my Country, my Corps.