1 graduated fron1 high school at J 6
and enlisted in the Marine Corps the next day.
It was June 1942 and WW II was blooming.
I was trained in Montford Point, N.C.
That's where blacks were sent for training.
I went to the Pacific for four years
and stopped at Guadalcanal, Sipan,
Iwo Jima, Tarawa, Guam and Bougainville.
My MOS was 03 J l, a machine gunner.
I was wounded in the leg on Guadalcanal
and also wounded on Sipan.
Sipan was the worst.
I could walk on bodies for 400 yards without
touching the sand.
Five waves of the Marines never made it to the beach.
Most of the other Corporals were ki lied,
so I was promoted on the beach
by a General who happened by.
I received two purple hearts, a bronze star,
two Navy commendations and other 1nedals.
After the war 1 was sent to China
to guard Japanese prisoners.
In 1945, I came home to the States,
but my mother, father and grandmother had died.
My grandmother had told me when I left,
""Do good. I won't be here when you're back.""
I tried to follow her advice.
I served three years in Korea,
Coldest I've ever been in 1ny life.
Had three tours in Vietnam,
Was shot down three times in a helicopter.
I was very lucky.
I retired after thirty-four years
as a Sergeant Major,
the highest rank an enlisted man can reach.
My grandmother would have been proud.