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Welcome to my Makin Island Raiders Page!


Gung Ho!!!

On August 17, 2001, the remains of 13 Marines who died during the Raid on Makin Island in 1942 were laid to rest in Arlington National Cemetery. Members of the 4 Marine Raider Battalions from World War II as well as families, friends and Marines from all eras since were present to render final honors to their fallen comrades.

I consider it an honor to have been invited to attend. Being in the presence of men who made Marine Corps history was almost indescribable. I felt like a "boot" standing next to them, but they still accepted me as one of their own and allowed me to walk over sacred and hollowed ground and stand with them in honor of fallen Marine Raiders. As Chesty Puller once remarked: "Old breed, new breed. There's not a damn bit of difference as long as it's the Marine breed!"

Here are some pictures of the event (Click on picture for larger image):

Outside of the Fort Myers Chapel. This is General James L. Jones, Commandant of the United States Marine Corps.
Sergeant Major of the Marine Corps, Sergeant Major Alford L. McMichael.
The Ceremonial Honor Guard is formed and ready.
A closer look at an Honor Guard Platoon.
Preparing to follow the casket.
The casket is transported by Caisson to Graveside Final Honors.
Following the casket in Procession.
Escorting the casket.
Standing Ceremonial Watch over the caskets.

Out of respect for the families and Marines, I took no pictures during the 21 Rifle Salute, Playing of Taps or Presentation of the Flags. You may be assured that it was all done properly and with taste.

The following names are of those who gave their lives at Makin Island:

Sgt. Clyde A. Thomason (Congressional Medal of Honor)
Sgt. Robert V. Allard (Navy Cross)
Sgt. Dallas H. Cook (Navy Cross)
PFC Richard N. Olbert (Navy Cross)
Pvt. John I. Kerns (Navy Cross)
Pvt. Donald R. A. Roberton (Navy Cross)
Cpl. James W. Beecher
FMIC Vernon L. Castle
PFC Richard E. Davis
Cpl. I. B. Earles
PFC William A. Gallagher
Cpl. Daniel A. Gaston
Cpl. Joseph N. Gifford
PFC Ashley W. Hicks
Cpl. Harris J. Johnson
Cpl. Kenneth K. Kunkle
Pvt. Carlyle O. Larson
Cpl. Edward Maciejewski
Pvt. Robert B. Maulding
Pvt. Alden C. Mattison
PFC Kenneth M. Montgomery
PFC Norman W. Mortensen
PVT. Franklin M. Nodland
PFC William E. Pallesen
Cpl. Robert B. Pearson
Capt. Gerald Price Holtom
Pvt. Charles A. Selby
Pvt. Cletus Smith
PFC John E. Vandenberg
Cpl. Mason O. Yarbrough

Before leaving, we take a moment to remember all those of the Naval Services who gave their lives for their country.

Eternal Father, strong to save
Whose arm hath bound the restless wave
Who bidst the mighty ocean deep
It's own appointed limits keep
Oh! Hear us when we cry to Thee
For those in peril on the sea!

Eternal Father Grant we pray
To all Marines both night and day
The courage, honor, strength and skill
Their land to serve, Thy law fulfill
Be Thou the shield forever more
From every peril to the Corps!

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