Tag Archives: U.S. Marine Corps

Losing military members … America’s skewed priorities

Chattanooga military killed 2015

Five U.S. military men killed in Chattanooga, TN.

By Lynn R. Mitchell

The following was posted to Facebook on August 1 by Kris Grogan, going viral in four days and shared 26,000 times. I saw it posted by military veteran friends.

For Kris Grogan, his last day in a military uniform was August 2, 2015. He is now retired from the Air Force for reasons he explains in this post, including this: “99 perent of America knows Cecil the Lion and Caitlyn Jenner. Only 1 percent will know the other 5 names (4 Marines and 1 Sailor) who gave their lives in Chattanooga, TN, at the hands of a terrorist.”

We thank Kris Grogan for his 14 years of service to our country. Can America afford to lose those willing to dedicate their lives to protect our freedoms?

By Kris Grogan

Tomorrow morning will be the final day I lace up my boots and put on my Air Force uniform. I have now served my country in uniform for 14 years but it is time to go.

As I was out-processing today my wife (who will be leaving service next month) and I were asked numerous times, “Why don’t you just stay in one more enlistment for your retirement?”

It was somewhat difficult to answer with just one reason as to why I have decided to take off the uniform. Was it the pay and benefits? No, not really (even though I make less than $15 a hour which many people think the minimum wage should be!). Was it all the deployments? Ummmmm, sort of (I have been deployed to Afghanistan, Iraq, Kosovo, and Bosnia just to name a few in addition to about 25 other countries) but I love my country and would always give my life defending this great nation for my family and friends.

So I just wanted to share a couple thoughts with all of you while I sit here thinking about my final day in uniform which will come at 0630 tomorrow morning. I currently am an AMMO troop. Our mission is to build bombs and process numerous other munitions to take the fight to the enemy. We pretty much put “Warheads on Foreheads!”

But what I signed up for many years ago has changed dramatically. Even though our mission is to kill, we are more worried about upsetting someones feelings versus getting the mission done. We spend more time doing ancillary training then actually training. Even though I have a military drivers license, I have to be signed off in another database to drive a vehicle and then have a competency card saying I know how to drive on top of that. That is just a few examples of why I have decided to call it quits.

And then we get to the bigger issue, America. Can anyone tell me what the following names mean? Thomas Sullivan, Skip Wells, Carson Holmquist, David Wyatt, or Randall Smith? Or is this easier for you — Cecil the lion or Caitlyn Jenner? Yes, we give more attention and respect to stars and animals then we do to those who continue to give their lives for this country.
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Memories before the dreaded but necessary Vietnam commemoration

Vietnam WallBy Daniel P. Cortez

In compliance with federal mandates, ceremonies commemorating the 50th anniversary of the Vietnam War will be held throughout Virginia this year and next.

Like millions who have waited decades for America to right the wrongs of a conflicted society that dishonored military men and women, I simply followed the military directives of the commander-in-chief. I should feel proud, but such pride carries a painfully cognitive price.

A scared but proficiently trained Marine lance corporal, I arrived in Da Nang, Vietnam, one day after my 19th birthday in 1970. Landing in a combat zone was accentuated as Marines, armed for battle, were directed to deplane first.

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Terrorism again strikes America, 4 Marines dead

American flag Marine 1By Lynn R. Mitchell

Four American Marines woke up Thursday morning, got dressed, ate breakfast, and left home to drive to work, never to return. They had families. They were part of the community. They were part of our military.

Thursday’s terrorism attack on two U.S. Armed Forces recruiting centers in Chattanooga, Tennessee, by a lone 24-year-old gunman named Mohammod Youssuf Abdulazeez again points out the danger to America and the reason we need to be ever vigilant (see 4 Marines killed in attacks on Chattanooga military facilities). Four U.S. Marines, dead. Four families, shattered.

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U.S. Marine from Va. killed in Afghanistan, wife expecting baby in December

Sgt. Charles StrongBy Lynn R. Mitchell

Sgt. Charles C. Strong, 28, of Suffolk, Virginia, died Sept. 15, in Herat province, Afghanistan, while conducting combat operations. He leaves behind his wife Taylor who is expecting a little girl in December.

He was assigned to 2nd Marine Special Operations Battalion, Marine Corps Forces Special Operations Command, Camp Lejeune, North Carolina (see Officials: Apparent insider attack killed U.S. Marine):

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