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  1. #16
    You Guys-Got to me-Tears are running down my eyes-I don't know what to say-for once on Leatherneck-God Bless you ALL-I'm not Queer but I love YOu.What more can I say........Semper FI-MY Brothers


  2. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by rufus1 View Post
    Good advise about going early and getting in because I also was one that looked on everything as I am a Marine and I can handle it myself. I was told I had PTSD but didn't seek help until i dreamed that I killed my wife while fighting in a dream. I stay by myself and keep my back to the wall also and I guess it will always be that way but I have a better understanding about what is going on now. Going through my second wife because I stay at home and seldon go out to places but don't drink like I use to but still like to go out in the Blue Ridge Mountains and just sit. Presently 100% due to Agent Orange problems (Cancer).Slipped Back Into The World
    Vietnam. The word brings different images to different people, often with some sort of negative connotation of a quagmire of a war fought as much in the political arena as on the battlefield, although the stakes were much higher for those on the battlefield. Most people I think would even have trouble finding Vietnam on a map, if they could do it at all.
    When I think of Vietnam, I think of "Joe". Joe can find Vietnam without a map. He usually finds it in the middle of the night when he wakes up in a cold sweat and shaking because he just realized that he's still alive... again. He's been finding it every night for 40 years, but he probably won't tell you about it because the first time he tried to tell someone he got burned. The last time, nobody cared anymore.
    Joe isn't one person of course, he's 3 million American's who went to Vietnam for no other reason than their country asked them to and then shamed them for going. 58 thousand of them came home in boxes; 155 thousand came home in pieces and the rest wake up at night shaking. That's Joe.
    My Joe is a smaller group of people, maybe half a dozen that have I been honored to know and have blended together to try and tell a bit of their story. Joe decided to join the service in 1967 because at 18, he thought he could make a difference in the world. He went to his local recruiter and proudly announced that he was there to join the war effort to go stop communists in Vietnam. After an interview and a couple of weeks of meetings and evaluations, it was decided that he would he would leave for boot camp in 6 weeks. Several days later at the dinner table of his parents' home, he received a phone call letting him know that a slot had become available immediately and that he could leave for boot camp the following morning.
    Unfortunately, he had neglected to tell his parents anything about his plans yet. Why should he have? He still had six more weeks, and that is a LONG time... well, it is if your 18, isn't it? "Mom, Dad, I have something I need to talk to you about. I've been thinking about it and, well, I've joined the military and I'm going to serve in Vietnam. I know what you're thinking, but I've already made up my mind and I signed all the papers earlier today." Silence. "Mom... Dad?" Finally, dad mustered up a few words. "When do you leave?" "Tomorrow morning. I go to boot camp for 13 weeks and then probably straight to Vietnam. I don't know when I'll be home again after tonight."
    His mother now lost what remaining vestige of calm she had left and fled the room in tears. Dad was able to keep control of himself in rapt silence, but Joe found out later that he had a nervous breakdown not long after he left for the war and Mom ended up being the glue that held the family together.
    Boot Camp is where you lose your identity and then get a new one back. You are stripped of any sense of self, and you learn a humility that is beyond imagination to most of us. I'm not just talking about sleeping in a bunkhouse with 100 other people or changing your clothes in public. I'm talking about 10 toilets in a room with no walls or doors. Variations on the word "I" will be used only under pain of a million pushups, and replaced with "this recruit". The closest you will come to even being acknowledged by your peers is when you are screamed at by a drill instructor at 3 o'clock in the morning because there is a bug on your bunk, because you have no peers.
    You are a recruit, and that is the worst scum on the earth. Even the other recruits aren't your peers, because they are you. All sense of identity is lost here. What comes out at the other end however, is a sight to behold. Boys come out men and girls come out women with a whole new identity. They are the most polite, cleanest, responsible, and well behaved group of young people you ever will meet. They are also your worst nightmare if they need to be.
    Joe actually liked boot camp. Sure, he would write letters home complaining about the food, or more specifically the lack of it, or about the drill instructors and the physical demands, but he felt like he was starting to fit in. He was learning to trust himself, and to trust the person on his left and the one on his right. And as much of a jerk as that drill instructor seemed to be, Joe was coming to realize that this was a person he would never forget. To this day, he has not.
    On graduation day, Joe and his fellow recruits were marched onto the parade grounds to perform a very elaborate ceremony that would be witnessed by a handful of officers and noncoms but an otherwise empty grandstand. Joe's parents were not there, but he expected that, no one's parents were there. To the outside observer, it must have seemed a very lonely and sad day, but Joe had never felt like he belonged anywhere more than he belonged here at this exact moment. These were his people now.
    For the next three years, Joe's story mostly disappears for those of us who stayed home. To be sure we have movies and books and newsreels, but for the most part we don't hear the stories from the people who lived them and I'm not sure we ever will. I'm not sure we ever want to.
    For something to be so horrible that close to 3 million men and women hold it inside for nearly 40 years, it cannot be easy to bear. What we do hear is the stories of friendship and the bonds that were created between them, which is where my Joe comes back into the telling. His best friend was kneeling over him holding his hand and trying to reassure him that he was going to be all right.
    Joe was bleeding badly and his unit was in the middle of an intense firefight but he could hear the helicopters finally coming in to get him and the other wounded out. He had no idea how badly he had been hit, but he knew that he couldn't move his arm and that he was starting to lose consciousness. His friend had patched him up as best as he could and helped get him on the waiting helicopter, which then sped out of the jungle without time for a goodbye. They would not see each other again for 40 years, not even knowing if the other was still alive but when they finally did meet again, it was as if two brothers long ago separated had found each other. They had both cheated death together, and they knew it.
    His next memory is of being in a bunk on board a naval hospital ship in pain and without enough room in his bunk even to roll over, let alone get comfortable. He had just about decided that his life was as bad as it possibly could get when he turned to look at a young man in the bunk below him who was driving him nuts with all of his moaning and whining. The young man was in a similar bunk, but he was confined to his back not because of the cramped space, but because he no longer had arms or legs. It was at that moment that Joe decided never to feel sorry for himself again; to my knowledge, he never has.
    Eighteen months later, the war now over for him and his wounds as much healed as they were ever likely to get, Joe came home on a commercial flight and landed at his hometown airport. There was no pomp or fanfare or cheering throngs with welcome home signs. He was one of the lucky ones, left alone that night. No protesters were there to meet him because it was too late in the evening to be bothered with going out to spit on another soldier or call him a baby killer and so he quietly grabbed his bags, walked out of the terminal and slipped back into the world as alone as he was the day before boot camp. The country he had given so much of himself to didn't even know he was home, and sometimes didn't care.
    Today, Joe is an executive, and a truck driver, and a teacher, and a police officer, and a friend. Sadly, he or she may have gotten too lost to get back and is no longer with us, but more often he is right among us still hanging onto an anonymity that protects him from any more hurt. More and more though, he is starting to emerge as America finally starts to understand that he is still here and deserving of our respect. He organizes crowds at the airport to make sure that our newest generation of fighting men and women come home to the sort of welcome that he should have had. He volunteers to pack care packages for our troops overseas even after working ten hours and driving 90 minutes to get there, and he gives his dog tags to a young Marine heading into battle.
    As a society, we need to make sure that he keeps coming out; that he knows that we are a grateful nation and understand that without his sacrifice, not even protests would have been possible, let alone prosperity and freedom. If you know a veteran, tell him thank you; it might just be the first time anyone ever has. Write a letter and take it to the Veteran's Affairs office. Do something to let these men and women know that they don't need to hide anymore, that we're proud of them, and that we get it at last. And if you see someone wearing a yellow bar tipped on the ends in green with three vertical red stripes through the middle, that's Joe. Shake his hand and tell him that you know who he is, and that you appreciate what he did. Remember, he's been to h≪ he'd go again if we asked him to, and he might go there tonight before he wakes up shaking.
    Thanks Joe... and Roger... and Mike... and Lloyd... and Jim...
    Reply Forward (THIS SAY IT ALL) (BELOW IS ANOTHER VERY TRUE ARTICLE)I lost my son February 27, 2010. After spending a couple of days with fellow Marines, I was inspired to write this and wanted to share it.
    Kari Underkofer
    A Marine
    To most, a Marine is a young handsome son in uniform serving his country, but there is a far greater depth to he that is called a Marine.
    There are many who desire the title of Marine, but few that are able to give themselves to this calling.
    It takes a great inner strength and fortitude to even complete the training that is required of a Marine.
    A transformation of one's self takes place and a lifetime brotherhood bond is established between each and every Marine.
    A Marine is a different breed of character and only their own understand this tie to one another.
    A Marine is the first one on the battle field, eye to eye with the enemy, knocking down doors and removing threats.
    They will go days without hot meals or showers. Their beds will be shoveled out dirt holes that fill with water and mud.
    They are exposed to the elements of heat and cold, with only their fellow Marine to keep them warm or care to their wounds.
    A Marine may be wounded from blasts or explosions, run on broken limbs, but will continue on until the mission is complete.
    They will risk everything to save one another. They will retrieve their brother's bodies from the battlefield, as no man is left behind.
    But the battle does not end here, it continues on in every Marine's memory, all for the sake of freedom so that we, as civilians may speak our minds, go to a McDonald's or grab a cup of moxie.
    The Marine continues to bear this burden for us. He trembles inside at loud noises, his heartbeat races in crowds of people, he continues on high alert to ensure his safety.
    He sometimes attempts to silence this burden with alcohol, pills, and drugs. His home life is often damaged with anger because he cannot speak of what he feels.
    My friend, this is the price of our freedom. The reason we can take a walk on safe ground, have good food and clean water, raise our children and send them to school so their lives may be better than our own.
    The sacrifices made by these men are daunting.
    The United States Marine Corps took my son Joe and returned to me a warrior, Chango. The good Lord took Chango, but returned to me hundreds of sons in the United States Marine Corps.
    Their love for their fellow Marine, brother and family is overwhelming.
    I am privileged that God would entrust me with such an honor as to give birth to a Marine.
    Although Chango now guards the gates of heaven, he continues to live on through each and every United States Marine.
    May God send his angels of peace to touch each Marine and may every United States citizen take the time to truly understand that your freedom is not free.
    God love the Marines
    Reply Reply to all Forward
    MAY GOD BLESS ALL OF OUR BROTHER AND SISTERS WHO NOW SERVES,THOSE WHO HAVE SERVED AND THOSE WHO WILL SERVE IN THE FUTURE. (A NOTE TO ALL MARINES - IF YOU HAVE PROBLEMS WHILE YOU ARE IN DON'T SUCK IT UP - GO TO SICK BAY AND IT WILL BE DOCUMENTED IN YOUR RECORDS FOR YOUR FUTURE. ALSO WHEN YOU GET OUT GET A FULL COPY OF YOUR MEDICAL RECORDS !!!!!!!!!!!!
    ////////..............I'm Crying like a baby-I am SO-Moved-Thank you-So Much...............God Bless you All-My Your Son-Watch Over You From Heaven-and Communicate With You.Bless You ALL


  3. #18
    If anyone is having a problem with VA paperwork or has questions in general regarding claims or pensions please IM me. I am a veteran Services Rep in the VA Regional Office in Philadelphia. Id be glad to help you out.


  4. #19
    Quote Originally Posted by spotts View Post
    If anyone is having a problem with VA paperwork or has questions in general regarding claims or pensions please IM me. I am a veteran Services Rep in the VA Regional Office in Philadelphia. Id be glad to help you out.
    .....Bless You Spotts-This is what I've been trying to tell people here.The Service Reps-are very dedicated-and they know-How to Do Things-and make "Majick"-Bless you for Taking on More Work.


  5. #20
    Marine Free Member gkmoz's Avatar
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    Broken jaw

    Quote Originally Posted by spotts View Post
    If anyone is having a problem with VA paperwork or has questions in general regarding claims or pensions please IM me. I am a veteran Services Rep in the VA Regional Office in Philadelphia. Id be glad to help you out.
    Deleted


  6. #21
    Is the process really that much easier with a VSO? I was considering calling the state DVA for help.


  7. #22
    Definitely have a VSO as a Rep. The DVA is a good one or the American legion or VFW.


  8. #23
    Thanks for the kick in the right direction. Scheduled a face-to-face for later on this month.

    Just have to make copies of this three inch stack...


  9. #24
    Marine Free Member FistFu68's Avatar
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    "Saepius Exertus~Semper Fidelis~Frater Infinitas"


  10. #25
    Good stuff, man! Thanks. I've got a claim submitted; didn't know ALL your tips so I'm doing some follow-up. I've copied your terrific sheet and will help circulate it although I tire of the gatherings of 'formers' who's only topics of discussion seems to be 'how to best try to get the best of the VA'.

    Until this Govt Administration was elected and began trying to bankrupt me I was able to survive on my private retirement benefits and SS. I'm helping support a single-mom daughter and I'm glad I'm able but I could sure use some help if I qualify for assistance without dreaded charity.

    Again, thanks, my experience is you can always depend on a Brother Marine for the best sincere advice.

    Mike


  11. #26

    Cool VA claim need Help with what I need to do

    I did not file a appeal Went to Regional center and they submitted the claim I told them that I had 30 % already so he said we will set it up, I got these forms 21-4142to release information,two of those then got from 21-4138 statement to support of claim my question is this Do I fell out this form myself, My wife is sending in a letter in also They say I have 30 days I am also to file with this form my 30% claim from Aug of this year this is my 1st time doing any of this sh--tt e stuff I am going to see the shrink on the 11 of Jan go to group 1st time at the VET center which they VA has sent for, I was in a group last summer but had to drop because I have to work, have not been able to get in another at the VA, now I will go to the Vet center for group this Wednesday. This is for PTSD increase VN Vet 69-70 Arizona Valley most of the tour.
    Is there any thing else I should do now.
    My question am I doing this right? YOU on here know more then me I so new


  12. #27
    Marine Free Member
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    Paul this is how it work for me, i run heavy equipment for 20 years local 9. i would lose a job almost twice a mtn,flash backs and fights with boss truck drivers,and i had assault record, i had written statement's from my old bosses saying i run the equipment well but cant take orders, and i had a va shrink that i seen for over years write a statement about my head problems, again i was not making it up. i do and did have problems , a the guy at c and p will be able to tell, geting a increase is easy if you got a problem, you got to get all you ducks in a row. my opinion.............usmc


  13. #28
    Marine Free Member montana's Avatar
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    wish this info was around back in the 70s/80s...was in the mid 90s that i got a puter and was able to do reserch....up to that time VA just gave me the run a round...i do hope that our younger bros apresiate all the hard work you old salts have done to mae it easyer to prove their disabilitys....was pure hell not to many years ago

    be safe good people


  14. #29
    Quote Originally Posted by pauldoc View Post
    I did not file a appeal Went to Regional center and they submitted the claim I told them that I had 30 % already so he said we will set it up, I got these forms 21-4142to release information,two of those then got from 21-4138 statement to support of claim my question is this Do I fell out this form myself, My wife is sending in a letter in also They say I have 30 days I am also to file with this form my 30% claim from Aug of this year this is my 1st time doing any of this sh--tt e stuff I am going to see the shrink on the 11 of Jan go to group 1st time at the VET center which they VA has sent for, I was in a group last summer but had to drop because I have to work, have not been able to get in another at the VA, now I will go to the Vet center for group this Wednesday. This is for PTSD increase VN Vet 69-70 Arizona Valley most of the tour.
    Is there any thing else I should do now.
    My question am I doing this right? YOU on here know more then me I so new
    ................................Hello Pauldoc-the answer to your question is: Your doing it all wrong-not your fault as it wasn't mine-when I reported my acute tinnitus and noise that drove me nuts.A representative from New York Regional office told me-I just shot myself in the foot by filling out the papers myself.Therefore -Join the DAV-Have a Service Rep-represent you.Do-not do anything yourself-the game is a foot.Do-not represent yourself for any reason without getting the facts and the Ammo you will need-to Win your claim...Ho-Rar..Get Them Liars......Your wife's input is very important-were there any black and blue marks on her?Do you Frighten her?-Do you have mood changes and shifts in personality?You have a on the spot witness-that can verify your rage and anguish .A little direction is all you need-I've been screwed plenty-read my mind-Join the Dav-let them handle-it-------I know I'm right in this PaulDoc-RhodeIsland would agree and Zulu36,and Kaelobe-might also.Don't give Em a chance to screw you-I did-but then You deserve it more-These are really not friendlies-Trust the VA-"Not"-The DAV is really on your side.Period-Wishing you Claim Justice in the Near Future..............SEMPER FI-my Marine Brother............


  15. #30
    Marine Free Member Troutzilla's Avatar
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    This site is awesome for information.......

    http://www.recordsofwar.com/vietnam/usmc/USMC_Rvn.htm


    Semper Fi
    Trout



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