The 8th & I Reunion Association

An organization of Marines
who served at
Marine Barracks
8th & I Streets, S.E.,
Washington D.C.

In Memoriam - World War II

Henry T. Elrod

Henry Talmage Elrod was the first aviator to be awarded the Medal of Honor, for his heroism in the defense of Wake Island during World War II.  He was born in Turner County, Georgia, and attended the University of Georgia and then Yale University until his father died.  He enlisted in the Marine Corps, and was appointed a Second Lieutenant in February 1931.

On December 4, 1941, Captain Elrod flew to Wake Island with twelve aircraft, twelve pilots, and the ground crew of Major Paul Putnam's VMF-211 fighter squadron.  Hostilities in the air over Wake Island commenced on December 8, 1941.  On 12 December he single-handedly attacked a flight of 22 enemy planes and shot down two.  He executed several low-altitude bombing and strafing runs on enemy ships; during one of these attacks, he became the first man to sink a warship, the Japanese destroyer Kisaragi with small caliber bombs delivered from a fighter aircraft.

To review his Medal of Honor citation, click here.

In Memoriam - Korean War

Sgt. James E. Johnson, USMC

Sgt. Johnson served in World War II in the Pacific, and made the landings at Peleliu and Okinawa. He was promoted to 2nd Lt., but at the end of the war he was reverted to Sgt., his last permanent rank. He served at the Barracks at the Marine Corps Institute in 1949-50. He was the seventh Marine awarded the Medal of Honor for heroism in Korea.

Although Sgt Johnson was serving with a provisional company of the 7th Marines when he earned the Medal of Honor, his regular outfit was the 11th Marines, the same regiment in which his father had served in during World War I.

To review his citation for the Medal of Honor, click here.

In Memoriam - Vietnam

Colonel Mike Spark

Date of Birth: 6/9/1927
Date of Casualty: 1/15/1969
Home of Record: NEW YORK, NEW YORK
Branch of Service: MARINE CORPS
Rank: COL
Casualty Country: SOUTH VIETNAM
Casualty Province: QUANG NAM
8th & I, MCI Company, ca. 1959-1962

Arlington Cemetery

Col. Spark was also a Korean War veteran; he was wounded in that war.

LTC - O5 - Marine Corps - Regular
37 year old Married, Caucasian, Male
Born on Mar 28, 1930
Length of service 16 years.
Casualty was on Jan 03, 1968
Hostile, died of wounds
Body was recovered
CGC Commanding Officer 1957-60


SSGT - E6 - Marine Corps - Regular
Length of service 14 years
Casualty was on May 8, 1967
Body was recovered
MCI - 1st Plt. - 1961

CPL - E4 - Marine Corps - Regular
Length of service 3 years
Casualty was on Feb 6, 1967
Body was recovered
CGC 1st Plt 1963-64

SGT - E5 - Marine Corps - Regular
27 year old Married, Negro, Male
Born on Apr 28, 1938
Length of service 10 years.
Casualty was on Oct 03, 1965
Body was recovered
CGC 1st Platoon 1964

CPL - E4 - Marine Corps - Regular
26 year old Single, Caucasian, Male
Born on Feb 16, 1940
Length of service 3 years.
Casualty was on Jun 04, 1966
Body was recovered
CGC 1st Platoon 1965

2LT - O1 - Marine Corps - Regular
31 year old Married, Caucasian, Male
Born on Feb 17, 1935
Length of service 14 years.
Casualty was on Jul 27, 1966
Hostile, died of wounds
Body was recovered
CGC Color Sergeant 1965

To read a stirring poem by Tom Lee written in honor of "Gunny" Eakin,
click here.

Together We Served page for 2ndLt Shelton Lee Eakin

7-14-13 ... As my tour at 8th & I ended in Aug., '66, we received word that our own previous Color Sgt. of The Marine Corps had become our first VN casualty. Since Shelton Eakin and I had been drill instructors together in the '50's, his wife asked that I escort his remains from Dallas to Texarkana, Ark., his hometown. There, Wes Fox, Shelton's best friend, fellow DI from MCRD, SD, and later MOH recipient, and I buried Shelton. A sad day indeed. Shelton's death was such a shock to Wes, that he included the letter verbatim, I wrote while adjutant, informing him of his KIA status. For anyone interested, his book is "Marine Rifleman - forty-three years in the Corps", Col. Wesley L. Fox, author.

Robert "Mustang" Reed, 8th & I, Ceremonial Guard Company, 3rd Platoon and Silent Drill Platoon; MB Adjutant, 1963-1966 / Vietnam veteran / retired from the Corps in 1984, Bigfork, MT "Semper Fi"

CPL - E4 - Marine Corps - Regular
21 year old Single, Caucasian, Male
Born on Sep 20, 1945
Length of service 3 years.
Casualty was on Mar 30, 1967
Body was recovered
CGC 2nd Platoon 1966

2LT - O1 - Marine Corps - Reserve
23 year old Married, Caucasian, Male
Born on Nov 10, 1943
Length of service 2 years.
Casualty was on Jul 03, 1967
Body was recovered
CGC Company Gunnery Sergeant 1966

LCPL - E3 - Marine Corps - Regular
21 year old Married, Caucasian, Male
Born on Apr 10, 1946
Length of service 2 years.
Casualty was on Aug 01, 1967
Hostile, died of wounds
Body was recovered
CGC 2nd Platoon 1966

SGT - E5 - Marine Corps - Regular
23 year old Single, Negro, Male
Born on Nov 14, 1944
Length of service 3 years.
His tour of duty began on Feb 24, 1968
Casualty was on Apr 28, 1968
Body was recovered
CGC 4th Platoon 1967

SGT - E5 - Marine Corps - Regular
23 year old Married, Caucasian, Male
Born on Nov 09, 1944
Length of service 3 years.
His tour of duty began on Mar 11, 1968
Casualty was on Jul 05, 1968
Body was recovered
CGC 4th Platoon 1967

CPL - E4 - Marine Corps - Regular
21 year old Married, Caucasian, Male
Born on Jul 10, 1947
Length of service 3 years.
His tour of duty began on Feb 27, 1968
Casualty was on Aug 09, 1968
Body was recovered
CGC 2nd Platoon 1967

CPL - E4 - Marine Corps - Regular
25 year old Married, Caucasian, Male
Born on Jul 17, 1944
Length of service 3 years.
His tour of duty began on May 11, 1969
Casualty was on Aug 21, 1969
Body was recovered
CGC Silent Drill Platoon 1968

MAJ - O4 - Marine Corps - Regular
33 year old Married, Caucasian, Male
Born on Jun 05, 1944
His tour of duty began on Mar 17, 1969
Casualty was on Apr 28, 1978
Hostile, died while missing
Body was recovered
Cpl - Silent Drill Platoon 1964

Jan Avery (Chip) Elkins
CPL - E4 - Marine Corps - Regular

Length of service 2 years
His tour began on Sep 2, 1968
Casualty was on Oct 26, 1968
Body was recovered
8th & I, H & S Co., 1967-68
Panel 40W - Line 36

Charles Harold Perkins
Born 1934, NY,N.Y
GYSgt, E-7 Marine Corps Regular
Length of service 12 years
Casualty was on 17 May 1968
in Quang Tri Province, South Vietnam
Hostile Ground Casualty
Gun, small arms fire
Died aboard the Hospital Ship USS Repose(AH-16)
H&S Co.1957-1958
Infantry Unit Leader

Awards: National Defense Service Medal
Vietnam Campaign Medal
Vietnam Service Medal
Purple Heart Medal

Located on the "Wall" 62E009

If you have the time /interest please google the Oral History of RADM(ret) Frances Shea-Buckley NC,USN.
ADM Buckley goes into some detail of her memory of GySgt. Perkins aboard the Hospital ship Repose,
Specifically the last paragraph of Pg13 thru Pg.15. It will give you a better idea of the type of Marine the Gunny was.

Francis Loe Shafer Jr
8th & I Marine, MCI Co., ca.1964-1967
KIA in QUANG TRI Vietnam - 03/30/1968


Body was recovered

Awards: Silver Star, Purple Heart

Francis is buried at Newkirk Cemetery in Newkirk, OK. SS PH

To honor the sacrifice of the above CGC Marines lost in Vietnam, the 8th & I Reunion Association (then "The Marines of Building 58" — denoting the building number of the Barracks at the Navy Gun Factory which housed the Ceremonial Guard Company between 1958 and the construction of the present Ceremonial Companies' living quarters in 1975) presented the plaque shown below, which is now on permanent display on the fifth deck of the living quarters of today's Ceremonial Companies.  The names and relevant information for each of the deceased Marines are shown.  The second photograph shows the wording contained in the main section of the plaque immediately above the names of the individuals.

In Memoriam - Beirut, Lebanon

[Note: An additional tribute to Mike can be found
Michael S. Haskell
Captain, U.S. Marine Corps - Regular
Casualty was on October 23, 1983
Bombing of Marine Barracks, Beirut, Lebanon
8th&I Admin Officer, CO of H&S Co.

Tribute by Charles Henderson
Author of Marine Sniper, Marshalling the Faithful, Silent Warrior,
Goodnight Saigon
and Jungle Rules.

Real men, I believe, are sensitive, feeling people who can freely express what they feel without fear of anyone regarding them as a pussy. It is the weak man who is always the one showing hardness, and no feeling.  The weak man must prove himself strong. A real man has nothing to prove, and does not care what anyone thinks of his demeanor.

My friend, Marine Captain “Iron Mike” Haskell was a real man. He kissed his kids. He hugged his fellow Marines.  He wept, sitting on an ammunition box one evening in Beirut, because he missed his wife, back home in Virginia.

I wept the day he died in Beirut.  A day when Islamic terrorists drove the truck bomb into the building where our Battalion Landing Team, 1st Battalion, 8th Marine Regiment, slept, early that Sunday morning, October 23, 1983.  I lost 284 brothers that day. Many of them my friends.

Mike was the battalion S-3 Alpha, the assistant operations officer.  He left behind a son and a daughter, beautiful blond-haired children, and a tender, loving wife.

I will never forget when Mike came ashore in Beirut.  I had been there several weeks before he had arrived, and he met me in front of my tent.  I was grouchy because a few days earlier, I had run out of Red Man chewing tobacco.  He laughed at my discontent. We had a few beers outside my tent that evening, and then he returned to the ship where the battalion was making final preparations for its amphibious landing the next morning.

About noon, when the landing operations had slowed, and Mike had a chance to get away from the beach, he showed up at my tent flap with a case of Red Man chewing tobacco under his arm, and handed it to me.

He said, “Here’s a little gift. I sure don’t want some grouchy gunner chewing my heels because he has no Red Man.”

I never forgot his thoughtfulness that day.  Nor how I felt when I opened that case, took a few pouches for myself and then gave the rest to a bunch of other Marines who had also ran out of Red Man and needed a good chew.

I also never forgot how I felt that day on the quarterdeck at Lejeune Hall, the headquarters building at the Quantico Marine Corps base, when the commanding general, Lieutenant General David Twomey, presented Mike’s widow, for their children’s education, two $10,000 zero-coupon bond treasury bills.  The gift for the children came from a group of men with whom I remain involved today and continue giving such gifts to the children of Marines and law enforcement officers killed in the line of duty, the Marine Corps-Law Enforcement Foundation.  Although not a foundation then, these men, among whom the late New York industrialist and real estate magnate, Zachary Fisher, was the principal contributor, gave the families of every Marine and other serviceman killed in Beirut the same kind of gift.

In Memoriam - Iraq

Captain Robert Secher

Sunday, October 8, 2006

Captain Secher served at the Barracks as a Cpl. in Guard Detachment during the early 1990's.  The following appeared in the November 6, 2006 issue of Newsweek Magazine.

Iraq Through the Eyes of a Deceased Soldier
Through the eyes of a frontline fighter: The Marine captain asked for a tougher assignment. The one he got seemed all but impossible.

By Dan Ephron and Christian Caryl

Robert Secher had a passion for history. Until his death in Iraq on Oct. 8, the 33-year-old Marine could recount all the major battles of the Civil War.  He studied the Holocaust, in which members of his father's family lost their lives.  In recent e-mails home, he said he was reading about Vietnam and the Mexican civil war. But his favorite books were on ancient Rome: he was captivated by the centurions, who commanded from the front and led by example.  "He talked about being a soldier since he was 6 years old," his mother, Elke Morris, told NEWSWEEK last week.  "He wanted to be tested in battle." Secher signed up for the Marines when he was 17.  He served on the Afghan border after the attacks of September 11 and later pressed for a transfer to the front lines in Iraq. He ended up in the insurgents' largest stronghold, Anbar province.His job there was one of the toughest in Iraq: making raw Iraqi recruits ready and able to take over the fight against the militants.  Secher found the task exasperating and often discouraging; in e-mails and letters home, he expressed doubt that the Iraqi military would ever be ready for a handover, and criticized the way the Bush administration had directed the war.  "Without the U.S., this army will fail and get eaten alive by the insurgents," he told his father in an e-mail this past April.  Chatting with a friend during a brief leave five months later, he spoke of suspicions that some of his trainees were loyal to Moqtada al-Sadr and would have no compunction about betraying their American instructors if the radical Shiite cleric told them to.At other times Captain Secher's messages expressed fondness for his Iraqi trainees and respect for their courage.  He was no pacifist. His parents describe him as an unswerving Republican, and his own dispatches consistently defend the invasion of Iraq even as he anguishes over its dwindling prospects of success.  "Don't mistake us for Cindy Sheehan," Pierre Secher told NEWSWEEK at his Memphis home (a reference to the California woman who became an iconic opponent of the war after her son's death in Iraq).  "To me, pacifism could have led to Hitler's victory.  We might have all been speaking German and Japanese right now." But as President George W. Bush speaks positively of setting benchmarks for Iraqi troops to "stand up" and Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld declares that their training is going well, Captain Secher's messages from the front give a more complicated picture.  His e-mails have been edited for space, and some typos have been fixed for clarity, but the words and feelings are entirely his own.

To view Capt. Secher's e-mails, click here.

Sgt. Jayton Patterson

Wednesday, January 19, 2005 @ 08:24 AM EST

WAKEFIELD - Sgt. Jayton Patterson, a Marine from Wakefield, Virginia, was killed Saturday when he stepped on a land mine in Iraq.  Patterson, 26, was scheduled to return from Iraq at the end of this month.

Patterson was a member of the 1st Battalion, 2nd Marines, Bravo Company, Weapons Platoon, 24th Marine Expeditionary Unit, United States Marine Corps.

WAVY-10, the NBC affiliate in Norfolk, reported that Patterson was an elite Marine and toured the Pentagon and the World Trade Center with President Bush.

His family last talked with Patterson on Friday.

Patterson's wife, Stephanie, received all of his belongings on the same day that he died.  He had shipped everything home early, in anticipation of being home at the end of the month.

Mary Worrell, Patterson's aunt, said that he made the family proud and was a soldier of God.

Frank Patterson said his son was in the Marines for six years, the first four of which he worked on special guard duty as a guard with the White House in Washington.  The younger Patterson got to see the destruction of Sept. 11, 2001, with the president first-hand.

"Then he was transferred to Camp LeJeune (N.C.), and he was transferred to California," Frank Patterson said.  "He was a good boy; he loved his country, he was a good Marine."   Frank Patterson added that his son had been in Iraq since about July 1, 2004. >The younger Patterson was supposed to start his trip home the day after the Iraqi elections, set for Jan. 30.   "He had gotten so close to coming home," Patterson added about his son. "His men looked to him for guidance, he was a super guy." Sgt. Jayton Patterson is also survived by a 1-year-old daughter, Claire Michelle.

Note: Capt. Philip Flies of the Barracks reports that Sgt. Patterson "served in A Co from the fall of 1999 to summer of 2003.  He was a squad leader in A2 and the guide for A1.  He reenlisted in 2003 and went to 1st Bn/2nd Marines.  Sgt Patterson was killed on 15 Jan 2005 in Iraq.  I was Sgt Patterson's last Plt Commander here before he left."

Lance Cpl. Lawrence Philippon
(Pictured above as guidon bearer for the Ceremonial Company just prior to the funeral parade for President Ronald Reagan. Pictured here with L.Cpl. Philippon in the foregreound is Capt. Peter Pace, the Company Commander.
On the left of the picture is Capt. Clark Mitchell - A Co 2nd Plt at the time, and later Company Commander. On the right is Capt Ryan Debouchel - A1 at the time, then Silent Drill Platoon commander. )


Barracks Marine killed in Iraq.
(New York Post - Online edition)

"May 11, 2005 -- A Marine from Connecticut who carried the flag at Ronald Reagan's funeral and then begged to see action in Iraq was killed Sunday doing what he wanted to do most — fight for his country. Lance Cpl. Lawrence Philippon, 22, died from small-arms fire while battling guerrillas along the Syrian border, Marines sources said yesterday.

News of his death had a devastating impact back home, where his parents, Ray and Leesa Philippon of West Hartford, were celebrating their 24th wedding anniversary.

Thoughts at the family's Mother's Day dinner were centered on Iraq, even before two Marines appeared at the door around 9 p.m. bearing the gut-wrenching news.

"We felt sorry for all 1,600 mothers who had lost someone," said Ray Philippon of the dinner conversation. "We didn't know at the time we were part of that group."

The former high school hockey goalie and oldest of three siblings made his commitment to serve once the war started.

"After we went into Iraq, he felt very strongly about that cause," said Philippon, who saw his son sign up two months after the March 2003 invasion. "It had to be the Marines. It couldn't be any other service. I think he had to test himself."

He joined the Marine Corps Color Guard — and even ended up carrying the flag at Reagan's funeral last June.

But that honor wasn't enough for Philippon, who filled out his 6-foot-4 frame to 220 pounds once he joined the military.

"He'd been begging them for a while [to go]," Philippon said. "Even though he enjoyed the color guard, he really wanted to be in Iraq. That is where it is all happening . . . He wasn't afraid. He did what he had to do."

Philippon's fiancée, Olivia Lawrence, who was to marry the Leatherneck Dec. 30, was heartbroken.

"I never thought in any dream that I would first of all be marrying someone in the military, let alone sending someone off to war [who] just didn't come back," said Lawrence, who heard from her beau every day, sometimes twice.

"He'd have people wake him up in the middle of the night so he could call Olivia," said his dad, an Army veteran.

Ray Philippon said he foresaw his son's death. "For the last couple of weeks I've been having visions of this occurring," he said. "Not anything specific. But something had been telling me. Maybe it was God's way of preparing us. Every time I had it, I'd say a prayer and try to put it out of my mind."

Philippon arrived in Iraq in late February as a rifleman with the 2nd Marine Regiment, 2nd Marine Division out of Camp Lejeune, N.C. That unit is part of the overall 2nd Marine Expeditionary Force, which is currently launching huge raids in western Iraq that have killed 100 enemy since the weekend.

He died in a four-hour firefight near Qaim, the last city on the Iraqi side of the border.

The family has no details since the military considers that information classified until at least the operation is over."

5-11-20 ....Thank you all for the honor that you bring. We are saddened that we will not be able to visit our son and 8th & I alumni Lcpl Lawrence R. Philippon on Memorial Day. This year marks 15 years since he lost his life in Iraq. He rests at Arlington National Cemetery in Section 60 Marker 8181. It is always a comfort when we see the Marines over Memorial Day. We always walk along Barracks Row. Almost every year, we stop at the gate to say hello to the Marines on duty. Several times, it has been at the time for the colors to be retired and we have been invited in to observe. Our son was in A Co. and served in Color Guard and as the Guidon Bearer. We were blessed to see him in The Friday Night Parade and at the Iwo Jima Memorial. This first picture shows him marching with Capt. Pace during Pres. Reagan's funeral procession. The second picture is his last lift up. God and the Marines have been our strength!
May you all have a most meaningful Memorial Day. Semper Fi.
The Philippon Family Submitted by Leesa Philippon, mother of LCpl Lawrence Philippon, West Hartford, CT

William G. Taylor

At President Reagan's Funeral

After a Sunset Parade
Cpl. William G Taylor
Date: Nov 30, 2005
Cause: Hostile, hostile fire, small arms fire
Location: Fallujah
Unit: 2nd Bn., 6th Marines, 2nd Marine Division, II MEF
Hometown: Macon, GA
Age: 26

Taylor died November 30, 2005 from small-arms fire while conducting combat operations against enemy forces in Fallujah, Iraq.

He was assigned to 2nd Battalion, 6th Marine Regiment, 2nd Marine Division, II Marine Expeditionary Force, Camp Lejeune, North Carolina.

Marine Cpl. William G. Taylor, 27, was one of two Marines killed during combat operations Wednesday in Fallujah.Taylor sustained a gunshot wound to the chest in a small gap in his Kevlar chest protector, according to information from the U.S. Marine Corps.

At the Barracks, he served as a member of B Co., 2nd Plt from 2002-04. In addition, he was assigned to participate individually in some ceremonies (e.g., President Reagan's funeral).

SSgt. Danny P. Dupre
AGE: 28
Home: Lockport, LA
MOS: 0369-Infantry Unit Leader
Unit: Co C, 1/9, 2d MarDiv

KIA on 080715 by a sniper round to the back of his ear as he was gathering intelligence on a classified mission during combat operations in Balad, Iraq.

1/9 Marine killed in action

Staff report:

A staff sergeant has been killed in combat in Iraq,
Defense Department officials said Monday.

Staff Sgt. Danny P. Dupre, 28, of Lockport, La., was killed July 15 in Anbar province, military officials said. He was assigned to Camp Lejeune, N.C.-based 1st Battalion, 9th Marines.
Dupre was shot while gathering intelligence for his squad in Ramadi, the Associated Press reported Sunday. He was hit behind the ear by a sniper's bullet while on a classified mission, said the Daily Comet newspaper of Lafourche Parish, attributing the information to an anonymous Marine official.
Dupre served four overseas deployments in Iraq and Afghanistan, and was scheduled to be buried on Monday.
His wife, Crystal, lives in Jacksonville, Florida, with their 3-year-old son, Daniel Dupre.
Died: July 15, 2008

His hometown newspaper reported:

"Staff Sgt. Danny P. Dupre of Lockport, Louisiana was killed in action on July 15th in the Al Anbar province of Iraq while supporting combat operations for Operation Iraqi Freedom. He was assigned to the 1st Battalion, 9th Marines, 2nd Marine Division, II Marine Expeditionary Force out of Camp Lejeune, North Carolina.

Sgt. Dupre was just 28 years old. He was shot while gathering intelligence for his squad in Ramadi, about 70 miles West of Baghdad, hit behind the ear by a sniper's bullet while on a classified mission.

He was deployed overseas to Iraq and Afghanistan four times.

Sgt. Dupre is survived by his wife Crystal, their 3-year-old son Daniel, and the rest of his family. Please keep them and Danny's friends and fellow Marines in your thoughts and prayers."

At the Barracks, Danny was a member of the Silent Drill Platoon from 1998-2000.
If you would like to visit and sign Danny's online MEMORIAL GUEST BOOK, please click on this link:
Danny's Guestbook

Marine Sgt. Michael P. Hodshire

Age 25, of North Adams, Mich.; assigned to 2nd Battalion, 2nd Marine Regiment,
2nd Marine Division, II Marine Expeditionary Force, Camp Lejeune, N.C.;
died Oct. 30, 2005 of wounds sustained Oct. 29 from an improvised explosive device during
combat operations near Nasser Wa Salaam, Iraq.

o o o o o

Hodshire dreamed of being a Marine
Associated Press

NORTH ADAMS, Mich. - A U.S. Marine from Hillsdale County who was serving in Iraq died Sunday near Fallujah, a family spokesman said.

Funeral arrangements for Sgt. Michael Paul Hodshire, 25, of North Adams were incomplete Sunday night, Kenneth Kurtz of Kurtz Funeral Home in Hillsdale said in a statement. He said the military told the family that Hodshire was killed by indirect gunfire. The family was not available for comment, Kurtz said. The Pentagon had not confirmed the death as of Sunday night.

Hodshire long dreamed of joining the Marine Corps, and he entered basic training four days after graduating from North Adams-Jerome High School in 1999.

"That's been a passion of his from his school days. He wanted to be a Marine," Kurtz said. Hodshire was deployed in Iraq from October 2003 through June 2004, then redeployed in July 2005.

"We're a small, rural community here," Kurtz said. "You can say this about so many kids, but he had a lot of friends here. He was very popular."

High school Principal Carl Christenson said Sunday that the 550-student district would be devastated by the news. He said he met Hodshire last summer during a Little League baseball game. His 11-year-old son and Hodshire's younger brother play on the same team, he said.

"It's a small district," Christenson told the Detroit Free Press. "Obviously, it will have an impact." Hodshire is survived by two children, his parents, one brother, three sisters and grandparents.

At the Barracks, he was assigned to the Silent Drill Platoon and A2, 1999-2002.

Staff Sergeant Daniel J. Clay, U.S.M.C.

SSgt Daniel J. Clay, who served at 8th and I as a member of Guard Detachment in 1997, was killed On December 1, 2005 in Falluja, Iraq. A member of 2nd Bn., 7th Marines, he was one of 10 Marines killed by an improvised explosive device while on foot patrol.

SSgt Clay is shown here with his wife Lisa at a document signing by Donald Rumsfeld, Secretary of Defense, with General Peter Pace, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs in attendance. SSgt Clay was a native of Pensacola, Florida. To see the article on SSgt Clay which appeared in the Pensacola News Journal, click here.

Sgt. Heath McMillin
U.S. Army National Guard

Sgt. Heath McMillin, a member of the 105th Military Police Company, died Sunday, July 27, 2003 while on patrol south of Baghdad.  Sgt. McMillin's mother is from Biddeford, New York.  He was stationed in Buffalo and lived in upstate New York with his wife and three children. Sgt. McMillin served in the marines for four years, then continued his service in the Army N ational Guard.  He left for Iraq in April.  Sgt. McMillin previously served in the Balkans.  He was 29 years old.

Jim Rooney reports that he served at 8th& I from Dec. 1996 to April of 2001. He says that Heath was his squad leader in 1st platoon of A company, and that Heath left the Corps and began his life with his wife and 3 children.  He adds that Heath wanted to stay connected to the military and joined the Army National Guard as a Military Police Officer, and that Heath was the first guardsman to lose his life in combat since the Korean War.

For the Guard Times (New York National Guard) tribute to Heath, click here.

Captain Tyler B. Swisher
Age: 35
Home: Cincinnati, OH
Captain Tyler B. Swisher, who put in extra effort to become a successful student and then a U.S. Marine officer, was killed by a roadside bomb in Iraq on 21 October 2005, the Defense Department said.

Swisher, 35, of Cincinnati, OH, was killed in Al Anbar Province, military officials said. Corporal Gray Cockerham III of North Carolina also was killed by the explosion that threw them from their vehicle into a canal, where their remains were eventually recovered as fighting continued in the area.

Swisher, the 94th Ohioan killed in the Iraq war, is survived by a wife and three children who live in the Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, area. His parents live in eastern Cincinnati.

"I've always heard that expression 'a Marine's Marine.' That was Tyler Swisher," said Jack Buchholz, a longtime family friend serving as the family's spokesman. He and Tyler's father, David, were teachers in the suburban Indian Hill school system.

"He overcame a lot of obstacles. He had to work extra hard," said Buchholz.

He said Swisher had a learning disability and spent hours on his studies, but kept improving and made the honor roll his senior year. Small while in high school, he was on the football team his senior year at Mariemont but rarely got into games.

He went on to earn a biology degree from Butler University in Indianapolis, then decided to enlist in the Marines in 1993.

He trained for six months just to make sure he was ready for boot camp, Buchholz said, working construction, running miles each day and climbing a 20-foot rope to gain strength.

He worked his way up to officer's commission in 1997, and was a company commander for the 2nd Battalion, 2nd Marine Regiment, with 200 Marines in his command. Buchholz said Swisher was in his third tour of Iraq duty.

He and his wife Stephanie bought a home in North Carolina this year, Buccholz said. He leaves behind daughters Ashleigh, 15, and Madison, 7, and a 5-year-old son, Jacob.

His parents, David and Mary Beth, were notified Monday night.

14 November 2005:

A memorial service will be held Tuesday for Marine Captain Tyler B. Swisher, who was killed October 21, 2005, by an improvised bomb during combat in Al Anbar province in Iraq.

Swisher, 35, was about halfway through his third tour of duty in Iraq when he was killed.

Swisher's body will be returned to Cincinnati today. A processional march will leave from Witt, Good and Kelsch funeral home, 3026 Madison Road, in Oakley at 2:30 p.m. Tuesday and go to Crossroads Community Church at 3500 Madison Avenue. Memorial services will be at 3 p.m. at the church. The family has invited the public to the services.

Swisher, a graduate of Mariemont High School, will be buried Thursday at Arlington National Cemetery.

His parents, Dave and Mary Beth Swisher, live in Pierce Township. His wife Stephanie and three children, Ashleigh, 15, Madison, 7, and Jacob, 5, live near Camp Lejeune, North Carolina.

Mile-long final procession honors Mariemont native:

Stephanie Swisher (center), wife of Marine Captain Tyler Swisher, who was killed by a roadside bomb in Iraq, holds on to Marine Captain Gary McCullar outside Crossroads Community Church before her husband's funeral service Tuesday.

Fellow Marines bear Captain Tyler Swisher to a waiting hearse. The Mariemont native will be buried at Arlington National Cemetery.

A family photo of Captain Tyler Swisher, who was in his third tour in Iraq.

U.S. Marine Captain Tyler Swisher craved challenges that others shunned. His arduous training in Korea for mountain warfare involved climbing steep, rocky slopes and living outdoors in the harsh elements.

"It was miserable," recalled his fellow Marine and close friend, Captain Gary McCullar. "He loved it."

Swisher's family and friends laughed knowingly when McCullar told that story Tuesday at Swisher's funeral at the Crossroads Community Church in Oakley.

From the time he was a skinny, 100-pound football player at Mariemont High School through his third tour of duty in Iraq, Swisher pushed himself beyond the norm.

"Tyler never faltered," McCullar said. "He always did it right."

Swisher, 35, was killed Oct. 21 by a roadside bomb in Iraq. The Mariemont native will be buried at Arlington National Cemetery on Thursday.

He leaves his wife, Stephanie, and children, Ashleigh, Madison and Jacob. The family lives in the Camp Lejeune. N.C., area. His also leaves his parents, David and Mary Beth Swisher; his brother, John; and his sister, Sara.

A mile-long funeral procession from the Witt Good & Kelsch Funeral Home on Oakley Square to the Crossroads Community Church at Madison and Ridge roads preceded the church service.

Swisher graduated from Butler University in Indianapolis in 1993.

Swisher, who grew to be 6-foot-2 and 210 pounds, enlisted in the Marines 12 years ago.

More than 300 people attended the funeral service in the large auditorium of the Crossroads Community Church.

"He gave everything he had so that everyone he loved and his fellow Americans could live free from fear," said Army Brig. Gen. Jeff Foley, also a Mariemont High School graduate.

Foley, who is older than Swisher, had never met him. But he said he learned a lot about Swisher by talking to family members, friends and his fellow Marines over the past three weeks.

Swisher was an unselfish person who always placed the needs of his family, his friends, the Marines he led and his country above his own, Foley said.

"It was never about him," Foley said. "Wars are fought by many. But they are won by men like Tyler."


Thank you for remembering our brothers.

Captain Swisher was with Marine Security Company, Camp David however. It's listed H&S Starboard (which is probably true)
but will always be a "Camp Marine". He was also there through 1996 as I was EAS'ing. Great Marine. Even better man.

A bunch of his fellow "Camp" Marines ran from Camp to Arlington in August of 2011, 100 miles, to honor him.

He was a true Marine badass. Know this.

Semper Fi, Corporal Smith, Marine Security Company, Camp David, 1993-1996


Swisher was in 2nd Platoon at Camp David with me. He was selected, and left for OCS before he hit his one year mark at Camp,
but the command did some serious string pulling to get the 1 year requirement waived to be eligible for the Presidential
Service Badge. They gave it to him right before he left.

Rob Lange


1994-1995, while serving at the Marine Barracks, 8th & I Streets, Washington, DC, Captain Tyler B. "Mustang" Swisher was assigned to the H & S Company, Starboard Platoon of Security Forces.


DATE OF BIRTH: 04/04/1970
DATE OF DEATH: 10/21/2005

Photo By Michael Robert Patterson, May 2008

8th & I Marine Captain Moises Navas ..... KIA 8 March 2020

Capt. Moises A. Navas, 34, a special operations officer and Germantown native, was killed March 8 in fighting against ISIS in Iraq. (Marine Forces, Special Operations Command ) GERMANTOWN, MD - A Marine from Germantown was one of two Americans killed March 8 while on a mission in Iraq to eliminate an ISIS stronghold, the Department of Defense said. Capt. Moises A. Navas, 34, a special operations officer stationed at Camp LeJeune in North Carolina, suffered fatal wounds on the mission. He is survived by his wife, a daughter, three sons, parents, and two brothers. Gunnery Sgt. Diego D. Pongo, 34,from Simi Valley, California, also died in the fighting.

Marine Forces Special Operations Command said the Marines had accompanied Iraqi Security Forces on the mission. Both were assigned to 2nd Marine Raider Battalion. "Captain Navas was one of our true heroes and perfectly embodied the mission of the United States Marine Corps," said Gov. Larry Hogan. "We ask Marylanders to join me and the First Lady in praying for his friends, family, and all those who loved him. In honor of his service and sacrifice, the United States and Maryland flags will be lowered on the day of his interment." Navas, who was known to most as "Mo," was born in Panama but grew up in Maryland. His commanding officer, Col. John Lynch, said in a statement that Navas loved watching his children play sports. He was also a scout sniper, a martial arts instructor, combat diver, and was recently selected for promotion to the rank of major.

"The hearts of the entire Marine Raider community are with the Pongo and Navas families as we mourn this tremendous loss," Lynch said. "In times like these we come together and rely on each other, sharing our burdens and providing strength to those that need it. We will do everything we can to lift up and support our grieving families in order to honor the incredible lives and the ultimate sacrifices of Gunnery Sgt. Pongo and Capt. Navas."

Navas enlisted in the Marine Corps in 2004 and achieved the rank of sergeant before receiving his commission in July 2010. Originally an administrative clerk, he was assigned to Marine Barracks Washington, D.C., before entering the commissioning program. He then became an infantry officer and was assigned to 2nd Battalion, 3rd Marine Regiment, where he supported two Unit Deployments to Japan, and served as Company G's executive officer, the Marine Corps said in a statement.

In 2014, Navas was selected to attend the Army's Maneuver Captain's Career Course in Fort Benning, Georgia. While awaiting orders to school, he completed MARSOC's Assessment and Selection process, securing his spot in a future ITC class, which he completed in the spring of 2016, earning the special operations officer MOS. Navas spent the last four years assigned to 2nd Marine Raider Battalion, where he served as a team commander and company executive officer, deploying in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Inherent Resolve before this current deployment to Iraq.

He was a graduate of the USMC Expeditionary Warfare School Non-Resident Course, the U.S. Army's Maneuver Captain's Career Course, the USMC Command and Staff College Non-Resident Course, Marine Combatant Diver Course, and Military Freefall Course.

His personal decorations include the Purple Heart, the Joint Service Commendation Medal, the Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal, the Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal, Combat Action Ribbon, two Good Conduct Medals, and the Military Outstanding Volunteer Service Medal, the Humanitarian Service Medal, the National Defense Service Medal, the Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, and four Sea Service Deployment Ribbons.

"On behalf of the Marine Raider Regiment and all of MARSOC, our most sincere condolences go out to the families of Gunnery Sgt. Pongo and Capt. Navas, " Lynch said. ..."Both men epitomize what it means to be a Marine Raider. They were intelligent, courageous, and loyal. They were dedicated leaders, true professionals in their craft, and willing to go above and beyond for the mission and their team."

Iraq / Afghanistan War Heroes - 8th & I Marine Captain Moises Navas,
click here.

Submitted by John T. Reim, Ceremonial Guard Company, Silent Drill Platoon / Rifle Inspector, 1958-1961, "Semper Fidelis"

Remembering D&B alum, Capt. Timothy Ryan, helicopter pilot - KIA May 19, 2003, Iraq. Age 30, from Aurora, Illinois. He served at the barracks from 1997-1999.

Marine 1st Lt. Timothy Louis Ryan| Military Times

Capt. Ryan was killed while conducting combat operations near Al Hillah, Iraq. He was assigned to Marine Medium Helicopter Squadron 364,
Marine Air Group 39, 3rd Marine Air Wing, Camp Pendleton, California. He died on May 19, 2003

In Memoriam - Afghanistan

SSgt. Daniel L. Hansen
Age: 24
Home: Tracy, CA
Tracy native killed in Afghanistan Written by Eric Firpo Wednesday, 18 February 2009
U.S. Marines Staff Sgt. Daniel Hansen died on Valentine's Day,
the first serviceman with Tracy ties to be killed in Afghanistan.

U.S. Marines Staff Sgt. Daniel Hansen West High graduate and U.S. Marine Staff Sgt. Daniel Hansen, 24, became the first serviceman with ties to Tracy to die in Afghanistan when he was killed by a roadside bomb on Valentine's Day, 2009.

Seven other servicemen with ties to Tracy have died in Iraq.

Hansen had been in Afghanistan since last October, working with a unit to defuse bombs, and going on patrol as an infantryman, said his twin brother, Matthew Hansen, a Marine who works in logistics at a headquarters battalion in Quantico, Va.

"He strived to be the best in everything," said Matthew Hansen. "He just had such a passion for everything he did. He truly was the embodiment of the Marine Corps ethos: honor, courage and commitment."

Hansen and his brother joined the Marine Corps one week apart after they graduated in 2002 from West High, where they studied in the Space and Engineering Academy, wrestled and played other sports.

Daniel Hansen was chosen early on to be trained as an elite Marine, quickly rose through the ranks and bested his competition, eventually earning the skills and a security clearance to guard then-President Bush at Camp David.

From there, Hansen was hand-picked to guard a pair of generals, the second of whom, Gen. Richard Zilmer, took Hansen with him to Iraq as a personal security guard and to train other security guards in Fallujah, his brother said.

Once that stint ended, Hansen headed to Florida to train for nearly a year to learn how to defuse bombs, after which he was sent to Afghanistan.

The family so far has few details about how Daniel Hansen died. All they know is that he was on patrol and killed by a bomb, Matthew Hansen said.

Daniel Hansen was promoted posthumously to staff sergeant.

His mother, Cheryll, 52, got news of her son's death the afternoon of Valentine's Day. Just hours earlier, she had been upset about a dream she had in which Daniel told her goodbye, said Cheryll's husband, Delbert Hansen, 62.

The family has long ties to Tracy. Both brothers and their sister, Katie Anne Hansen, 22, grew up in Tracy, and all graduated from West High School.

Delbert Hansen's father owned Del's Marina on Old River outside Tracy, which he ran for a time after he purchased the business from his father, who owned it since the 1930s, Delbert Hansen said.

But for years Delbert has worked at a nearby federal pumping plant, where he counts fish caught in the plant's giant pumps and removes debris. He hopes to soon retire and move to Alaska with his wife now that they own a home there, said Ellen Furhman, a friend of the family who knows the Hansens through her daughter, Clair Penrod.

Daniel Hansen had a fiancé who also grew up in Tracy, Emily Campbell, 22, now a student at Fresno State University, Matthew Hansen said.

Seven other servicemen from Tracy have been killed in the Iraq War: Army Staff Sgt. Steven Henry Bridges, 33; Army National Guardsman Sgt. Patrick McCaffrey, 34; Army Pfc. Jesse Martinez, 20; Marine Cpl. Brandon Dewey, 20; Army Sgt. 1st Class Tung Nguyen, 38; Army Pfc. Bruce Cameron Salazar, Jr., 24; and Army Sgt. Kyle Dayton, 22. "I had asked my brother after he told me of his upcoming deployment if he wanted to go," Matthew Hansen wrote to his father this week. "He said: 'It doesn't matter if I wanna go or not. If I don't, they will send another Marine; and I would never be able to hold my head up if something happened to him in my place!'"

Note:  A non-USMC web site lists for all of the armed services the KIA's from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, including those listed above. It is very well done, and includes in many instances photos of funerals, etc. To view it, click here.

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