Remember Our Fallen Brothers, Beirut
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  1. #1

    Remember Our Fallen Brothers, Beirut


    24TH MAU OCTOBER 23rd, 1983


  2. #2
    Phantom Blooper
    Guest Free Member

  3. #3


    Thanks For Jumpin In Phantom.

    Was There, Still Relivin It.

    "they Paved A Parking Lot Over Hallowed Ground", Those Chicken**** Mother****ers!

    Semper Fi

  4. #4
    Veterans/Family Groups Remember Fallen Beirut Heroes 24 Years Later

    Beirut Veterans of America News Release

    Media: For More Info: Randy Gaddo (770) 631-4074 or (770) 631-2542

    For Immediate Release

    Veterans/Family Groups Remember Fallen Beirut Heroes 24 Years Later

    24th Annual Remembrance Will Be Held Oct. 23, 2007 at the Beirut Memorial in Jacksonville, N.C.

    The Beirut Veterans of America (BVA) and The Beirut Connection will hold their 24th Annual Beirut Remembrance October 23 at the Beirut Memorial in Jacksonville, N.C.

    Hundreds of current and former service members, families and friends will remember fallen heroes who died during the U.S. peacekeeping mission to Lebanon from 1982-84. October 23 is chosen because on that day in 1983 a terrorist truck bomb exploded in a Beirut barracks, killing 220 Marines, 18 sailors and three soldiers, and injuring many others.

    Total, 270 service members lost their lives while serving in the Lebanon theater of operations.

    The Remembrance also honors the service of those who participated 49 years ago during the 1958 Beirut landing as well as similar missions to Beirut in 1905, 1976 and 2006.

    At the time of the 1983 bombing, it was the most serious terrorist act against Americans ever experienced, and a precursor of what was to come. Parallels have been drawn between it and the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks in New York, Washington D.C. and Virginia. Many of the same terrorists or groups were involved in both.

    The 1,000-member BVA is a veteran's group formed in 1992 to ensure that the servicemen killed in Beirut are always remembered. The Beirut Connection is a group of families who joined together soon after the bombing to mourn their deceased men in Beirut and have stayed together since.

    The Beirut Memorial includes a wall with the names of all those killed during the Marine "peacekeeping" mission in Beirut, Lebanon from 1982-84 and during the Grenada rescue mission.

    The 24th Remembrance will feature a candlelight vigil at the Memorial at 6 a.m. on October 23rd, where all the names on the wall will be read aloud by service members or families.

    "Reading their names aloud ensures that these men are remembered for their courage and their sacrifice," says Bob Jordan, a retired Marine Corps major and the founding president of the BVA. This sentiment echoes the BVA motto, "The First Duty is to Remember."

    At about 10 a.m. on the 23rd, there will be a special ceremony held at the Memorial, featuring guest speakers and military band music and attended by hundreds of family and fellow service members.

    President Ronald Reagan first sent Marines to Beirut in 1982 to assist in the evacuation of civilians from 2 dozen countries out of Beirut when political unrest made the area unsafe. Navy and Army units were attached to Marine units. Later, they helped see to the safe evacuation of Yassar Arafat and his 15,000-man PLO army from Beirut.

    Marines were called in again as part of a multi-national peacekeeping force to try and keep the peace while Lebanon's government had a chance to reform after the assassination of President Bashir Gemayel. Meanwhile, President Reagan authorized a successful October 1983 military intervention to rescue American students threatened by a communist regime in Grenada. The unit that was on ships heading to Beirut to relieve the Marine unit decimated by the bombing was diverted to carry out the Grenada mission.

    The Beirut deployment started quietly, but gradually hostilities among the many warring factions in Beirut drew the Marines into increasing levels of involvement. The hostilities peaked with the truck bombing and continued until President Reagan withdrew the forces in 1984.

    Marines had also been sent to Beirut in 1958 on a similar mission, but one that ended without a similar turn of events as in the 1982-84 deployment. That deployment is credited with delaying the Lebanese civil war for almost two decades.

    Those interested in more information or photos about the Marines in Beirut can go to the official BVA website at .


    "Never Forgotten"

  5. #5

  6. #6
    The Beirut bombing was a national trajedy that needs to be remembered It also needs to be Avenged!

  7. #7
    Remembering Beirut, those who never returned home
    By Col. Charles Dallachie
    Base Commander MCB Quantico

    For Marines, great victories, great defeats and great sacrifices are never forgotten but are remembered with battle streamers attached to unit colors. Unfortunately, there are no battle streamers to remember the ultimate sacrifice made by Marines and sailors in Beirut in 1983.

    In the very early morning of October 23 in Beirut, Lebanon, a building serving as the command post for the First Battalion, 8th Marine Regiment, was hit by a suicide bomber driving a stake bed truck loaded with compressed gas-enhanced explosives.

    The explosion and collapse of the building killed 241 Marines, sailors and soldiers. Bomb experts who examined the blast called the approximately 12,000 pounds of TNT the largest non-nuclear explosion in history. For the Marines it was the biggest loss of life in a single day since the Corps fought the Japanese on Iwo Jima in World War II.

    In 1982, Lebanon, the country once known as the ''Switzerland of the Middle East" because of its European flavor, its prosperous economy and its ethnic diversity and tolerance, was mired in a bloody ethnic and religious conflict which would permanently destroy its character and leave its people shattered and demoralized to this day.

    In June 1982, after repeated Palestinian Liberation Organization cross-border attacks from strongholds in southern Lebanon into villages in northern Israel, the Israeli Defense Forces launched Operation Peace for Galilee. Throughout the summer of 1982, CNN brought to the world's living rooms images of Israeli air and artillery pounding heavily populated Beirut as they sought to destroy the PLO fighters surrounded in the city by the Israeli forces. The terrible suffering, more than 12,000 killed in 70 days, caused Beirut to become the center of worldwide attention.

    At the request of the Lebanese government, the United States, along with Britain, France, and Italy inserted a multinational peacekeeping force into Beirut hoping its ''presence" would provide a measure of stability to help the Lebanese government get back on its feet. Unfortunately, America was sticking its hand into a thousand-year-old hornet's nest.

    By the summer of 1983, as diplomatic efforts failed to achieve a basis for lasting settlement, the Moslem factions came to perceive the Marines as enemies. This led to artillery, mortar and small arms fire being directed at Marine positions - with the Marines responding in kind against identified targets. By mid-October, just before being introduced to a new and deadly weapon - the suicide truck bomber, seven Marines had been killed and 26 injured.

    Immediately following the tragedy, the residents of Jacksonville, N.C., expressed an outpouring of grief and support for the families and loved ones of the Marines and sailors who had been killed. Part of that support included raising funds for a memorial to honor those who had died in Lebanon during the peacekeeping mission. Today, near the entrance to Camp Johnson, a subsidiary base of the overall Camp Lejeune, N.C., complex, a memorial wall was erected and now permanently stands nestled among some Carolina Pine trees.

    The Wall was completed on Oct. 23, 1986. It is similar to the Vietnam Wall in Washington, D.C., as it bears a list of those Americans who died in Lebanon. Only four words are inscribed on the Wall: ''They Came in Peace."

    In 1988, a statue was added to the Wall, it represents a lone Marine keeping vigil over his fellow Marines. In addition to the Wall, the residents of Jacksonville planted a Bradford Pear tree for each man killed in the explosion on the center median along Lejeune Boulevard, on Highway 24.

    A Marine officer now retired, tells the story of when in August 1992, while still on active duty and traveling to Camp Lejeune, he couldn't help but notice the trees that line the middle of the road. Knowing that each tree was dedicated to an individual Marine, sailor, or soldier who had lost his life in Lebanon, he felt saddened as the vehicle sped past tree after tree after tree. Before arriving at the main gate he asked the young Marine who was driving him if he knew the significance of those trees. The Marine quickly looked at a few of the trees as he sped past them, and looked over to the passenger and said very matter-of-factly, ''Hell, I don't know. I've never noticed them before. I guess they're just trees."

    The Bradford Pear seedlings have grown since first planted, and as evidenced by the young Marine's comment, their growth has been somewhat meaningless to those who were either too young to remember that October 1983 tragedy, or to those who had never been told of their significance. It is somewhat ironic that a young Marine, of all people, could have been so cavalier in his response, because if anyone should be concerned about what happened in Beirut, it is Marines who are and will be stationed with the Fleet Marine Forces.

    Unfortunately, in October 1983, the vast majority of Americans had little knowledge of, less interest in, and no great concern with what was going on in Beirut - it was so far away. Today, let us honor, but also learn, from the sacrifices of those who have gone before, so we do not give the citizens of Jacksonville a reason to plant more trees along a stretch of highway that leads to the main gate of their military base.


  8. #8
    Ceremony to mark Beirut bombing anniversary
    Staff report
    Posted : Friday Oct 19, 2007 15:46:39 EDT

    JACKSONVILLE, N.C. — Hundreds of people will converge on the Beirut Memorial here Tuesday to remember Marines, sailors and soldiers killed 24 years ago in what was then the most serious terrorist act against the U.S.

    The annual ceremony honors the 241 service members killed Oct. 23, 1983, when a truck bomb rammed into the Marine barracks in Beirut, as well as those who participated in the 1958 Beirut landing and similar missions in 1905, 1976 and 2006.

    Maj. Gen. Robert Dickerson, commander of Marine Corps Installations-East, will deliver this year’s address. The ceremony begins at 10:30 a.m.

    The uniform for active-duty Marines is Service “A” with garrison cap.

    The Marine Corps League will hold a wreath-laying ceremony at 2 p.m. at the Beirut Marker at Camp Geiger.


  9. #9
    Lore of the Corps
    Tragic bombing in Beirut brought Lejeune together
    By Tabitha Clark - Special to the Times
    Posted : October 29, 2007

    Oct. 23, 1983, marks the day that forever changed many lives in Jacksonville, N.C. Wives lost husbands, parents lost sons and Marines lost their brothers.

    Leathernecks made up the majority of an international peacekeeping force after the Israeli army invaded southern Lebanon in 1982 following an assassination attempt on an Israeli ambassador.

    Two hundred and forty-one Marines, sailors and soldiers died instantly when a hijacked water delivery truck drove through the headquarters building of Battalion Landing Team 1st Battalion, 8th Marines, in Beirut and detonated an explosive load equal to 12,000 pounds of TNT.

    The nation mourned along with the residents of Jacksonville as 220 of the dead were Camp Lejeune, N.C.-based Marines.

    Three years later, the city of Jacksonville dedicated the official Beirut Memorial along the main traffic artery joining the city and Camp Lejeune.

    Along with the memorial, Bradford pear trees line the boulevard between the memorial and Camp Le-jeune’s main gate — one for every service member lost. The project began with the trees; the memorial was commissioned later.

    Controversy erupted in 2001 when the North Carolina Department of Transportation built a bypass through the base and 111 trees had to be moved.

    James Wilder, a lance corporal in 1982 who helped with the evacuation of non-combatants from Lebanon but was not stationed with the Marines at the time of the bombing, told a reporter with the Jacksonville Daily News how he felt about the uprooting of the trees.

    “I find it ironic that these 18-year-old trees are now the same age as many of those young men, when they were ‘cut down’ during the bombing,” he said in 2001. “There was no way we could have protected them the first time, but we can the second time around.”

    However, retired Sgt. Maj. Joe Houle, who lives in Jacksonville, said recently the tree relocation became a nonissue after they were moved without harm.

    Next year marks the 25th anniversary of the tragedy; the memorial and trees continue to inspire.

    “The Beirut bombing is what brought this community together,” Houle said. “The people here in the community realized that the Marines, sailors and soldiers who died in the blast were also their neighbors that lived next door to them.”


    The writer is a student journalist at Ohio State University.


  10. #10
    Those affected by Beirut blast still bear emotional scars

    October 23, 2007 - 6:47AM

    Twenty-four years ago today, a bomb exploded in Beirut, Lebanon, destroying the lives of hundreds of service members and their families.

    The dust has long settled from the attack, but for many in eastern North Carolina, the wounds will never fully heal. Gail Black lost her husband that day. Debbie Ryan's husband came home with injuries that would later claim his life. John Snyder lost shipmates and fellow Marines. For each, the suicide attack on the Marine barracks is more than a tragic historic event. It is part of who they are.

    Black married David Dale Gay on Dec. 30, 1981. Both were Marines, and Black - then known as Gail Gay - was stationed at New River Air Station. The morning of Oct. 23, 1983, Black was at home when someone from work called and told her to turn on the television. She saw the bombing and decided she should to go to work - a secure communications center on base.

    She said she knew something was up when four of the men she worked with went to the bathroom at the same time. They wouldn't let her look at any messages, she said, and they gave her busy work to keep her away from the news.

    "I just knew that (even) if everybody else got killed, he would still be alive," she said. "It wasn't denial, it was just faith."

    Three days after the bombing, a captain came to the communications center and told her Gay was missing in action. A few days later, she learned that he had died in the blast. It was Black's church and friends that helped her get through. The bombing destroyed "all my hopes and dreams," she said.

    "You don't know what it's like to be a widow at 21. ... We weren't at war, we weren't expecting them to come back hurt."

    It had already been a difficult year for Black. Before Gay left for his deployment, she lost the baby she was carrying.

    "I don't know, except for God, how I got through that year," she said.

    Though Black remarried and has a son, she said she still starts getting upset around this time of year, or when she hears certain songs on the radio.

    "I always tell people that my first husband was my knight in shining armor, and my second husband is my teddy bear, my protector," she said.

    Debbie Ryan's first husband, John Hendrickson, was in a tent about 75 meters from the barracks when the Hezbollah terrorist drove a bomb-laden truck into the building.

    "He said he remembered sitting by the side of the bed, putting his boots on, and the next thing he knew, he was pushing rubble off," Ryan said.

    Ryan and Hendrickson's two sons were living at Tarawa Terrace II at the time, and when they saw the blast on television, one of his sons began screaming, "Daddy's dead, daddy's dead," Ryan said.

    Because Hendrickson was helping with body identification, he was listed as missing for three days. But Ryan said her intuition told her he was OK. Hendrickson returned from Beirut, but within a year, he was in a wheelchair, Ryan said. He suffered a concussion in the bombing and developed multiple sclerosis. Hendrickson was still an active-duty Marine when he died in 1990 at the age of 37. Ryan is now fighting to get the Purple Heart she knows her husband earned.

    Hendrickson's name is on the Beirut Memorial wall, and Ryan, her husband and her youngest son will be there today to honor the memory of him and the others who served.

    "If no one goes (to the ceremony), then these boys have fought for nothing. They need to be remembered always," she said.

    John Snyder cannot forget the morning of Oct. 23, 1983. As part of the 24th Marine Amphibious Unit, he had been living on a small base on the edge of the Beirut International Airport, about 500 yards from the Marine barracks. Sniper fire and mortar attacks had picked up prior to the bombing, Snyder said, so the area they called "Rockbase" was shut down, and Snyder was sent back to the U.S.S. Iwo Jima.

    Snyder was up early the morning of the bombing, but said he and the other Marines had no idea "the extent of the damage, the lives that had been lost, or the fact that the growing cloud of dark smoke on the shore line was what was left of where we had, only weeks before, eaten chow every day.

    "Waves of helicopters began flying ashore, returning with bodies, Snyder recalled. "Many of us were tasked with carrying the dead and wounded, and helping out as best we could; holding a hand here and there and trying to calm those who could not be calmed," he said. "It was a very sad, busy and chaotic time."

    Later, the squadron called for a working party ashore, and Snyder - not knowing what it would entail - volunteered. He soon learned he would be part of the body recovery team.

    "My job was to unload and stack the bodies as they were brought down the road from the blast site. We would then, with great care, stack the bodies, some in body bags, some not, into aluminum shipping containers which we would eventually load on aircraft for their final flight home," he said. "I recall the sadness and anger we felt that day, but moreover, I recall the care that we took with our fallen brothers."

    Snyder said he still has trouble talking about Beirut, and the memories are too painful for him to even attend the yearly observances. But he said he can find pride in the fact that he and the other Marines were able to give their fellow service members the respect they deserved.

    "We were taking care of the 'peace keepers' who had been murdered in their sleep, for the cause of 'peace'," he said. "They were heroes, each and every one, and I can only hope that when my time finally comes, I will be found worthy of the dignity and respect that we were able to show the fallen Marines of the Beirut bombing.

    "Snyder now teaches third grade at Swansboro Elementary School, and said he hopes the children will learn about the bombing and carry on the story.

    "I worry that the children that I now teach will not teach their children of the day so many good Marines died. For as sad as that day was, it would be sadder still if the sacrifice of so many true heroes was lost to history forever."

    Contact military reporter Jennifer Hlad at or 353-1171, ext. 8467.



    Later this evening pix's will be placed in from the Memorial Service which Mark and I will be attending...

    RIP Marines

  11. #11
    Beirut bombing remembered today
    Staff report
    Posted : Tuesday Oct 23, 2007 6:33:13 EDT

    JACKSONVILLE, N.C. — Hundreds of people will converge on the Beirut Memorial here Tuesday to remember Marines, sailors and soldiers killed 24 years ago in what was then the most serious terrorist act against the U.S.

    The annual ceremony honors the 241 service members killed Oct. 23, 1983, when a truck bomb rammed into the Marine barracks in Beirut, as well as those who participated in the 1958 Beirut landing and similar missions in 1905, 1976 and 2006.

    Maj. Gen. Robert Dickerson, commander of Marine Corps Installations-East, will deliver this year’s address. The ceremony begins at 10:30 a.m.

    The uniform for active-duty Marines is Service “A” with garrison cap.

    The Marine Corps League will hold a wreath-laying ceremony at 2 p.m. at the Beirut Marker at Camp Geiger.


  12. #12
    Was there after the blast. God Bless All that lost their lives and please continue to help those of us who struggle with the memories and horror of that time. Semper Fi!!

  13. #13
    Guest Free Member
    Here's to the 24TH MAU !

  14. #14

    Exclamation My Fallen Marine Brothers


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