Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Richard B. Anderson
US Marine Corps

Medal of Honor
Richard Beatty Anderson (June 26, 1921 - February 1, 1944) was a United States Marine who sacrificed his life during World War II and received the Medal of Honor posthumously for his heroism.

Anderson was born in Tacoma, Washington on June 26, 1921 and was raised in Agnew, Washington. He attended Macleay School in Agnew before graduating from Sequim High School in the nearby city of Sequim. He entered the Marine Corps on July 6, 1942 in Oakland, California, receiving his recruit training at the Marine Corps Recruit Depot San Diego, California. Private Anderson then joined the Marine Barracks, Naval Receiving Station in San Diego in October 1942. Promoted to private first class on April 12, 1943, he was ordered to the Infantry Battalion, Training Center, Camp Elliott, San Diego, shortly afterwards.

He next joined his last unit, Company E, 2nd Battalion, 23rd Marines, and with his unit he departed from the United States in January 1944. The following month he landed in the Marshall Islands, on Roi Island. Roi Island was the first pre-war Japanese territory to fall to Marines.

PFC Anderson, a member of the invasion force, was hunting enemy snipers. He hurled himself on a live grenade in a shell hole to save the lives of three buddies though he knew death for himself was almost certain. Anderson was evacuated to a ship, where he died of his wounds on February 1, 1944. He was buried at sea with full military honors.

He was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor "the nation's highest military decoration" and the Purple Heart.

Medal of Honor citation
The President of the United States takes pride in presenting the MEDAL OF HONOR posthumously to


for service as set forth in the following CITATION:

For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty while serving with the Fourth Marine Division during action against enemy Japanese forces on Roi Island, Kwajalein Atoll, Marshall Islands, February 1, 1944. Entering a shell crater occupied by three other Marines, Private First Class Anderson was preparing to throw a grenade at an enemy position when it slipped from his hands and rolled toward the men at the bottom of the hole. With insufficient time to retrieve the armed weapon and throw it, Private First Class Anderson fearlessly chose to sacrifice himself and save his companions by hurling his body upon the grenade and taking the full impact of the explosion. His personal valor and exceptional spirit of loyalty in the face of almost certain death were in keeping with the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service. He gallantly gave his life for his country.


Posthumous honors
In 1945, the United States Navy destroyer USS Richard B. Anderson (DD-786) was named in honor of Medal of Honor recipient Anderson. The Port Angeles Federal Building was renamed the "Richard B. Anderson Federal Building" in his honor on September 2, 2008. During the renaming ceremony, a letter written by Harry Pearce was read; Pearce was one of the three men that Anderson had saved.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Meriwether Lewis
William Clark
Meriwether Lewis was born August 18, 1774, near Charlottesville, VA, and was a boyhood neighbor of Thomas Jefferson. In 1794, Lewis joined the militia and, at the rank of Ensign, was attached to a sublegion of General "Mad Anthony" Wayne commanded by Lieutenant William Clark. In sharing the experiences of the Northwest Campaign against the British and the Indians, Lewis and Clark fashioned the bonds of an enduring friendship.

On March 6, 1801, Lewis, as a young Army Captain in Pittsburgh, received a letter from the soon to be inaugurated President, Thomas Jefferson, offering Lewis a position as his secretary-aide. It said, "Your knolege of the Western country, of the army, and of it's interests and relations has rendered it desireable for public as well as private purposes that you should be engaged in that office." Lewis readily accepted the position.

The reference to Lewis' "knolege of the Western country" hinted that Jefferson was again planning an expedition to explore the West and had tentatively decided that Lewis would be its commander. On February 28. 1803, Congress appropriated funds for the Expedition, and Lewis who had worked closely with Jefferson on preparations for it was commissioned its leader.

As he made arrangements for the Expedition, Lewis concluded it would be desirable to have a co-commander. With Jefferson's consent, he offered the assignment to his friend and former commanding officer, William Clark, who was living with his brother, George Rogers, at Clarksville, Indiana Territory. Clark accepted, stating in his reply, "The enterprise &c. is Such as I have long anticipate and am much pleased.... My friend, I do assure you that no man lives whith whome I would perfur to undertake Such a Trip &c. as yourself."

Also a native Virginian, Clark, born August 1, 1770, was 4 years older than Lewis. In capability and background, he and Lewis shared much in common. They were relatively young, intelligent, adventurous, resourceful, and courageous. Born leaders, experienced woodsmen-frontiersmen, and seasoned Army officers, they were cool in crisis and quick to make decisions. Clark, many times over, would prove to be the right choice as joint leader of the Expedition.

In temperament Lewis and Clark were opposites. Lewis was introverted, melancholic, and moody; Clark, extroverted, even-tempered and gregarious. The better educated and more refined Lewis, who possessed a philosophical, romantic and speculative mind, was at home with abstract ideas; Clark, of a pragmatic mold, was more of a practical man of action. Each supplied vital qualities which balanced their partnership.

Their relationship ranks high in the realm of notable human associations. It was a rare example of two men of noble heart and conscience sharing responsibilities for the conduct of a dangerous enterprise without ever losing each other's respect or loyalty. Despite frequent stress, hardships, and other conditions that could easily have bred jealousy, mistrust or contempt, they proved to be self-effacing brothers in command and leadership. During their long journey, there is not a single trace of a serious quarrel or dispute between them.

After the Expedition, Lewis was appointed Governor of the Louisiana Territory; Clark was promoted to Brigadier General and appointed to the Superintendency of Indian Affairs. Lewis, at age 35, died tragically on October 11, 1809, just three years after the Expedition. His grave lies within Natchez Trace National Parkway, near Hohenwald, Tennessee. Thomas Jefferson, who held life-long affection for his protege, is credited with the Latin inscription on Lewis' tombstone: Immaturus obi: sed tu felicior annos Vive meos, Bona Republica! Viva tuos. (I died young: but thou, O Good Republic, live out my years for me with better fortune.)

Clark lived a long and productive life in St. Louis, dying September 1 1838, at age 68. He is buried in the Clark family plot. In deserved tribute, both Meriwether Lewis and William Clark are recognized members of that generation of our young nation's heroes who launched within themselves a drive of nationalistic vision and patriotic will that would form the spirit and richness of American history itself.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Walter K. Singleton

U.S. Marine Corps
Walter Keith Singleton (1944-1967) was a United States Marine who was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor for his heroism in March 1967 during the Vietnam War

Walter Keith Singleton was born on December 7, 1944 in Memphis, Tennessee, and graduated from Bartlett High School there in June 1963.

On August 1, 1963, he enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve at Memphis and integrated into the Regular Marine Corps the following September.

Ordered to the Marine Corps Recruit Depot Parris Island, South Carolina, he completed recruit training with the 3rd Recruit Training Battalion in February 1964. Upon completion of recruit training, he was promoted to private first class.

Transferred to Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, he was assigned duty as ammo-carrier with Company E, 2nd Battalion, 6th Marines, 2nd Marine Division until November 1965. While stationed at Camp Lejeune, he was promoted to Lance Corporal on October 1, 1964 and to Corporal on August 1, 1965.

Corporal Singleton returned to the Marine Corps Recruit Depot at Parris Island and served as an instructor with the Weapons Training Battalion, Recruit Training Regiment, with the additional duty of training marksmanship to Midshipmen at the U.S. Naval Academy, Annapolis, Maryland. While performing this additional duty, he received a letter of appreciation for qualifying 100 percent of the Officers-to-be.

Prior to departure from the United States, Cpl Singleton was promoted to Sergeant on September 1, 1966. On November 13, 1966, he joined Company A, 1st Battalion, 9th Marines, 3rd Marine Division in the Republic of Vietnam and served as supply sergeant with that unit. He was mortally wounded on March 24, 1967 in the action for which he was awarded the Medal of Honor.

A Parkway, which runs from Memphis TN to Millington TN is named in his honor.

Awards and decorations
A complete list of his medals and decorations includes: the Medal of Honor, the Purple Heart, the Good Conduct Medal, the National Defense Service Medal, the Vietnamese Service Medal with one bronze star, the Vietnamese Military Merit Medal, the Vietnamese Gallantry Cross with Palm, and the Republic of Vietnam Campaign Medal.

Medal of Honor
Purple Heart
Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal
National Defense Service Medal
Vietnam Service Medal with one bronze star
Vietnam Gallantry Cross (with Palm)
Vietnam Military Merit Medal
Republic of Vietnam Campaign Medal

Medal of Honor citation
The President of the United States in the name of The Congress takes pride in presenting the MEDAL OF HONOR posthumously to


For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. SGT Singleton's company was conducting combat operations when the lead platoon received intense small arms, automatic weapons, rocket, and mortar fire from a well entrenched enemy force. As the company fought its way forward, the extremely heavy enemy fire caused numerous friendly casualties. Sensing the need for early treatment of the wounded, SGT Singleton quickly moved from his relatively safe position in the rear of the foremost point of the advance and made numerous trips through the enemy killing zone to move the injured men out of the danger area. Noting that a large part of the enemy fire was coming from a hedgerow, he seized a machine gun and assaulted the key enemy location, delivering devastating fire as he advanced. He forced his way through the hedgerow directly into the enemy strong point. Although he was mortally wounded, his fearless attack killed 8 of the enemy and drove the remainder from the hedgerow. SGT Singleton's bold actions completely disorganized the enemy defense and saved the lives of many of his comrades. His daring initiative selfless devotion to duty and indomitable fighting spirit reflected great credit upon himself and the Marine Corps, and his performance upheld the highest traditions of the U.S. Naval Service.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Alexander J. Foley, USMC
Medal of Honor

Sergeant Alexander Joseph Foley (February 19, 1866 - January 14, 1910) was a member of the United States Marine Corps who was awarded the United States' highest military decoration, the Medal of Honor, for having distinguished himself during the Boxer Rebellion.

Early years
Foley was born in Heckscherville, Pennsylvania to Irish immigrants, Edward and Catherine McDonald Foley. At a young age he decided that he was not going to work the coal mines as his father had done. He joined the United States Marine Corps in 1888 for a period of five years. In 1893, he re-enlisted and, in 1898, he was sent to Cuba during the Spanish-American War where he received his first taste of military action. He also participated in the Philippines Campaign.

Boxer Rebellion
In 1900, members of a Chinese nationalist society, known as the Righteous Harmony Society or in contemporary English parlance, "Boxers", resented the presence of Western foreigners and Chinese Christians on their soil and proceeded to attack them. This became known as the Boxer Rebellion. Hundreds of foreigners were murdered. The British Legation at Peking was under siege for two months and soon after the international settlement at Tientsin was also placed under siege by the Boxers. The small garrison of Marines stationed in Tientsin found themselves under attack and outnumbered by the nationalists, who were determined to "drive the foreign devils" out. A multinational military force from the Eight-Nation Alliance whose members were Austria-Hungary, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Russia, the United Kingdom, and the United States and consisting of 50,000 troops were sent to Tientsin to reinforce the troops already there.

On June 21, 1900, the Boxers were entrenched on the outskirts of Tientsin. On July 13, 1900, a major skirmish occurred between Foley's unit, the Ninth U.S. Infantry, and the Boxers. Major James Regan was badly wounded and Foley together with Sergeant Clarence Edwin Sutton and two other Marines, under enemy fire and in total disregard for their own personal safety, rescued the Major. They were able to take Maj Regan to a field hospital three miles away from the location where he was wounded. In the letter which Major Regan wrote recommending the Medal of Honor, he stated the following:

"It was with the greatest of difficulty and persistence in their noble work that they got me off the field. They placed me on an improvised litter made of two flannel shirts and two rifles. I was a heavy man and with the greatest of care over the roughest kind of ground, under fire, they carried me to the Marine Hospital in the city, a distance of about three miles....Such men are worthy of all the distinction the Government can confer upon them."

After serving in the Boxer Rebellion, Foley was sent to the Marine garrison located in Cavite, in the Philippine Islands. There, on May 11, 1902, in the presence of his unit, he was bestowed with the Medal of Honor.

Sergeant Sutton and the two other Marines were also awarded the Medal of Honor.

Medal of Honor citation
Rank and organization: Sergeant, U.S. Marine Corps
Date:July 19, 1901
G.O. Navy Department, No.55

In the presence of the enemy in the battle near Tientsin, China, July 13, 1900, Foley distinguished himself by meritorious conduct.

Puerto Rico
Foley was re-assigned to the Culebra Naval Station located on the island of Culebra, Puerto Rico. On January 14, 1910, Sgt. Alexander J. Foley suffered a heart attack and died at the age of 44. The Department of the Navy did not consider it practical at that time to transfer his body to his hometown, therefore Foley was buried in the municipal cemetery of Culebra, with flags at half mast and with full military honors.

Awards and Recognitions
Among Alexander J. Foley's decorations and medals were the following:

Medal of Honor
Spanish Campaign Medal
Philippine Campaign Medal
China Relief Expedition Medal

Monday, September 7, 2009

National Grandparents' Day
Sunday, September 13

National Grandparents Day is a secular holiday celebrated in the United States and Canada on the first Sunday after Labor Day and is celebrated in the United Kingdom on the first Sunday in October.

Grandparents Day can be traced back to the first national Grandparents Day in 1978. With the efforts of Marian McQuade of Oak Hill, West Virginia, she has been recognized nationally by The United States Senate, in particular Senator Alphonse D'Amato, and President Carter as the founder of National Grandparents Day. McQuade made it her goal to educate the young in the community to the important contributions senior citizens have made, and to the important contributions they are willing to make if asked. She also urged the young to adopt a grandparent, not for one day a year, not for material giving, but for a lifetime of experience and caring just waiting to be shared with others.

Later that year, Senator Jennings Randolph (D-WV) introduced a resolution in the United States Senate to make Grandparents Day a national holiday. Five years later in 1978, Congress passed legislation proclaiming the first Sunday after Labor Day as National Grandparents Day and then-President Jimmy Carter signed the proclamation. The statute cites the day's purpose as: "... to honor grandparents, to give grandparents an opportunity to show love for their children's children, and to help children become aware of strength, information, and guidance older people can offer."

Official Song of Grandparents Day
In 2004, the National Grandparents Day Council of Chula Vista, CA announced that "A Song For Grandma And Grandpa" by Johnny Prill is the official song of the National Grandparents Day holiday. United States Senator Debbie Stabenow told Johnny "It is wonderful that "A Song For Grandma And Grandpa, was chosen as the official song of National Grandparents Day. You have put into words the unique relationship between grandparents and their grandchildren."

Lifted from Google:
Click>YouTube - National Grandparents Day Song - Johnny Prill
2007http://www.nationalgrandparentsday.com"A Song For Grandma And Grandpa" by Singer /Songwriter Johnny Prill is the official song of National ...www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wfp0zFYdJHc - Related videos

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Labor Day #127
This Labor Day finds about 9.7 percent of Americans jobless and some are not financially able to fully celebrate this special holiday weekend beginning on Friday, September 4. Since I live where the beautiful beaches are blessed with white-sugar sand and the Gulf water is blue like the sky above, I have no need to travel on the dangerous highway or go any where by plane to celebrate.

This is a great Labor Day backyard cookout recipe if you plan to stay at home.

Barbecue Ribs
3 slabs bone-in pork loin ribs (about 8 pounds)
Garlic salt
Meat tenderizer

Remove ribs from packaging and rinse well with cold water; place on paper towels. Sprinkle liberally with garlic salt and meat tenderizer. Wrap in foil and place in refrigerator until ready to cook. Preheat a smoker to 225 degrees; add soaked wood chips. Remove ribs from foil and place in smoker. Cook for 2 hours, replenishing wood chips as necessary, cook an additional hour. After three hours, remove ribs, place on aluminum foil, and liberally apply barbecue sauce. Wrap in two layers of aluminum foil and seal edges. Cook an additional hour. Carefully remove from smoker, place on platter, and cut ribs apart to serve.

My best words of caution. "Don't drive if you are drunk." Live to celebrate Veterans Day on November 11 and Thanksgiving Day on November 26.

“Driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol can be a life altering mistake," said Florida Department of Transportation Secretary Stephanie Kopelousos. "It’s a decision a sober person would never put in the hands of someone who has been drinking - yet that is exactly what you do if you fail to plan ahead. Think twice, and designate a sober driver."

In 2008, the most recent year for which Florida data is available, there were more than 22,200 alcohol related crashes with more than 1,100 alcohol related fatalities and more than 15,700 alcohol related injuries across the state. Miami-Dade County lead the state with 1,898 alcohol related crashes and 85 alcohol related fatalities.

Labor Day History
As the Industrial Revolution took hold of the nation, the average American in the late 1800s worked 12-hour days, seven days a week in order to make a basic living. Children were also working, as they provided cheap labor to employers and laws against child labor were not strongly enforced.

With the long hours and terrible working conditions, American unions became more prominent and voiced their demands for a better way of life. On Tuesday September 5, 1882, 10,000 workers marched from city hall to Union Square in New York City, holding the first-ever Labor Day parade. Participants took an unpaid day-off to honor the workers of America, as well as vocalize issues they had with employers. As years passed, more states began to hold these parades, but Congress would not legalize the holiday until 12 years later.

On May 11, 1894, workers of the Pullman Palace Car Company in Chicago struck to protest wage cuts and the firing of union representatives. They sought support from their union led by Eugene V. Debs and on June 26 the American Railroad Union called a boycott of all Pullman railway cars. Within days, 50,000 rail workers complied and railroad traffic out of Chicago came to a halt. On July 4, President Grover Cleveland dispatched troops to Chicago. Much rioting and bloodshed ensued, but the government's actions broke the strike and the boycott soon collapsed. Debs and three other union officials were jailed for disobeying the injunction. The strike brought worker's rights to the public eye and Congress declared, in 1894, that the first Monday in September would be the holiday for workers, known as Labor Day.

The founder of Labor Day remains unclear, but some credit either Peter McGuire, co-founder of the American Federation of Labor, or Matthew Maguire, a secretary of the Central Labor Union, for proposing the holiday.

Although Labor Day is meant as a celebration of the labor movement and its achievements, it has come to be celebrated as the last, long summer weekend before Autumn.