View Full Version : They were called Lady Leathernecks

Rocky C
01-15-16, 02:38 PM
The Marine Corps wasn’t hunting for female heroes in 1943. They needed women to replace battle-ready men who were desperately needed in the field. This was a time for men and women to step up, to make a sacrifice for their country.

She was called a Lady Leatherneck, a Marine in the proud tradition of honor, valor and camaraderie. The slogan “The Few, The Proud” amply describes her swagger.

Generally, when one thinks of Marines, a mental picture appears of a big, tough square-chinned man with cold steel eyes. However, there are Marines of all shapes, sizes and gender.

“We’re one for all and all for honor,” the second stanza of the Woman’s Leatherneck song goes. “And we’ll work to keep our country strong. We’re the Women Marines Association. Come, Marines, and join us in our song.”

The term “Leatherneck” has become a term of admiring comment. It was derived from a leather stock once worn around the neck by both American and British Marines.

Beginning in 1798, “one stock of black leather and clasp” was issued to each U.S. Marine annually. This stiff leather collar, fastened by two buckles at the back, measured nearly 3-and-a-half inches high. The stock was dropped as an article of Marine uniform in 1872, but by then it was a part of American vocabulary, a word preserved, like so many words, beyond its original meaning.

A native of Selma, Ala., and a newcomer to Monroe, Francis Lanier was called a leatherneck. She served as a captain in the Marine Corps Women’s Reserve during WWII. She was born 100 years ago ( 1916 ) in Talladega, Ala. In 1943, at the age of 27, she became a Marine, entering into a sisterhood soon to be called the “Lady Leathernecks.” She wore the title with great pride and distinction.

“I wanted to do something,” she said. “I missed out on the (Women Accepted for Volunteer Emergency Services) and the (Women’s Army Corps) were already gone, so I tried to get in on the early class with the Marines.”

She took her basic training at Camp Pendleton, Calif., and in a short time rose in the ranks to captain, company commander and PX officer at Camp Elliott and Camp Pendleton.

Don’t confuse Lanier for a “woman’s libber.” She said she wasn’t thinking of breaking any barriers held by men when she joined the Corps — but as a woman she knocked down barriers by simply fulfilling her military obligations.

A graduate of Huntington College in Montgomery, Ala., she qualified as the first woman candidate to enter Officer Candidate School in the Woman’s Marine Corps. She was only the third female captain and company commander of Company C, the largest of the four companies with 245 women under her command.

Her friend Kathryn Windham told the Selma Times-Journal, “Frances never could tell her right from her left — she still does not. And one day she marched her company straight into the brick wall of a building.”

When asked her about this incident, Lanier said, “You had to be there to understand that.”

01-16-16, 08:34 AM
http://www.leatherneck.com/forums/attachment.php?attachmentid=29450&stc=1 Respect.

Rocky C
01-16-16, 08:38 AM
You got that right Billy.

Most people don't know how the Lady Leathernecks got there name or the history behind our " Women Warriors ".

Since 1943 !!!!

USMC 2571
01-16-16, 08:44 AM
Interesting history.

Rocky C
01-16-16, 08:57 AM
Most Marines only know of our " Marine Corps Hymn ".

Our " Lady Leathernecks " have their own song.

Lady Leatherneck Song Lyrics.

Marines, We are the women members of a fighting corps.

Marines the name is known from burning sands to ice-bound shore.

Marines, We serve that men may fight in air, on land, and sea.

Marines the eagle, globe and anchor carry on to make men free.

We're Lady Leathernecks, we marching on to fame.

We're here to fight to make things right and bring our men back home again.

To Bring honor to our corps, is what we're striving for,
to Wear the green of a US Marine and keep the peace for ever more.

01-16-16, 04:40 PM
Gives one a different perspective on today's Women Marines, even though I still don't believe in all the new changes that have been put into place.

Rocky C
01-17-16, 10:46 AM
This is a Great read !!!


Rocky C
01-18-16, 02:03 PM
Lady Leatherneck Cadence

Delayed cadance, Delayed cadance count

1 Motivation
2 Dedication
3 On our way to
4 Graduation
1, 2, 3, 4, 1 2 3 4 United States Marine Corps
Semper Fi
Do or Die

We’re Women Marines
And we march with pride
We march shoulder to shoulder
And side by side
On our left, our left
Our leave our low


Your left your right
Your left your right better know
Cause it’s your left foot ladies
You left foot strikes the deck
Your left foot ladies
Your left your right your left

Verse 1

We march to the chow hall
We march everywhere
We march shoulder to shoulder
To show that we care
On our left, our left
Our leave or low


Your left your right
Your left your right better know
Cause it’s your left foot ladies
You left foot strikes the deck
Your left foot ladies
Your left your right your left

01-27-16, 02:28 PM
That's some great history there Rocky :thumbup:

01-27-16, 06:56 PM
I've met a lot of lady Marines during and after my tour in the Corps. Came close to marrying one, but like horseshoes, it was close but no ringer. I thank them for all that they have done, but I don't know if all the changes will benefit them or the Corps. Hell them foxholes get cold, and I am a man with feelings, just saying!

02-13-16, 09:56 AM

Rocky C
02-13-16, 01:59 PM
OUTSTANDING post right there Billy.

Semper Fidelis.

02-14-16, 05:49 AM
When did they quit calling them BAMS?

02-14-16, 07:39 AM
Good question Silverdollar! They were still known as BAMS when I got out in 67.

02-14-16, 07:42 AM
Just more of the PC crap I guess.

02-15-16, 03:38 PM

Rocky C
02-15-16, 06:24 PM
Outstanding post Billy.

Thank you Brother !

I can't thank our Lady Leathernecks enough. From WWII to present day.

02-22-16, 07:48 AM

Rocky C
02-22-16, 07:52 AM
Outstanding !!!

Rocky C
03-17-16, 09:31 AM
MARINE CORPS BASE CAMP LEJEUNE, N.C. -- Female veterans and active duty and future Marines were united on March, 11, 2016 by the Women’s Marine Association to recognize Women’s History Month and celebrate the 73rd anniversary of proudly serving in the Marine Corps.

The ceremony at Paradise Point Officers Club on Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune paid homage to female Marines, their proud history and their promising future.

“This [the association] is such a great organization and seeing all of the former active duty Marines from the Korean War era, some from Vietnam, and they are bringing in everything they have,” said Sgt. Maj. Yolanda Mayo, ceremony narrator and organizer. “They have uniforms and pictures, and it’s just such a good time for us to sit back and say, ‘thank you for your service’ and welcome our new veterans as we have some of our youngest, soon to be Marines here who are in the Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps.”

While all Marines have an important role to play, for many years female Marines have served alongside their male counterparts to accomplish the mission. Today, the new and future female Marines have new challenges but more opportunities ahead of them.

“Since I was little, I have wanted to be an infantry Marine. Even a couple years ago that wasn’t possible,” said Alana Baker, a Lejeune High School JROTC cadet. “I have wanted to be a Marine since I was a little kid, so being able to be around all these women who have pushed past these barriers and still have had successful careers, it’s really inspiring to me.”

Much like the official Marine Corps Birthday Ball, the ladies conducted a cake cutting ceremony, continuing tradition and heritage from one generation to the next.

“Passing on the history and tradition from the old to the young and bringing them into the fold, it means a lot,” said Mayo. “The Marine Corps is built on tradition so this is a little bit of ours.”

The unique ceremony offered special opportunities for past, present and future female Marines to share stories, advice, experiences and hardships with each other and to the world.

“Many Marines don’t understand 73 years of women Marine history, when we became a part of the women Marine reserves,” said Sgt. Maj. Robin Fortner, Director Staff Noncommissioned Officer Academy and event guest speaker. “A lot of Marines don’t know that, not just female Marines but Marines period. It took us a lot to get to this point, and we continue still to make history in the Marine Corps and junior Marines should understand they have a special part in Marine Corps history.”

08-10-16, 07:50 AM
Mom & Dad had both been in the Corps during WW2, and I clearly recall them teasing each other many times with BAM and HAM. (H is for hairy)

10-19-16, 12:24 PM
Heck ya! They say that Marines are cut out of a different cloth, well Female Marines are cut out of a whole world. There is so little women who can really earn the title and live the life style. OORAH!!

doc h fmf
10-23-16, 04:30 PM
I had the pleasure of meeting a woman worrier ,at Baypines her name was Miss Penny i forgot her last name but she was lady worrior number 17, I talked to her son and boy he told me some stories.