Class Poop
Military / Patriotic Stories and Reports

Send your input to Class Scribe - LTC Richard (Rick) D. Bunn (Retired) at
Veterans' Day 2014
Submitted by: Bob Guy
31 October 2014

One Jarhead with the right idea
The Other Verse
Submitted by: Chuck Moseley
11 December 2013

Chuck Moseley was kind enough to share the following link with me to pass on to you. He comments:

Go Jarheads! A Marine stuns the crowd at a Party. Watch this crowd. In the beginning when he started to sing, they were not even aware he was singing The National Anthem.

Let me add that you can see the awareness spreading as the people behind him, one by one, begin to stand a render the appropriate salute to our National Anthem. With this offering, I’m asking Chuck Nichols to post this link in our Patriotic/Military section of our webpage. Thank you Chuck Moseley for sharing and Chuck Nichols for making it available to us all.

Indeed – Go Jarheads!

Bill Mauldin Remembered
Submitted by: Paul Schultz
5 December 2013
He meant so much to the millions of Americans who fought in World War II, and to those who had waited for them to come home. He was a kid cartoonist for Stars and Stripes, the military newspaper; Mauldin's drawings of his muddy, exhausted, whisker-stubble infantrymen Willie and Joe were the voice of truth about what it was like on the front lines.  more>>




"God Bless America"
The Original Performance by Kate Smith
Submitted by: Rick Bunn
18 November 2013

Frank Sinatra considered Kate Smith the best singer of her time, and said that when he and a million other guys first heard her sing "God Bless America" on the radio, they all pretended to have dust in their eyes as they wiped away a tear or two.

The link at the bottom will take you to a video showing the very first public singing of "GOD BLESS AMERICA". But before you watch it, you should also know the story behind the first public showing of the song.

The time was 1940. America was still in a terrible economic depression. Hitler was taking over Europe and Americans were afraid we'd have to go to war. It was a time of hardship and worry for most Americans.

This was the era just before TV, when radio shows were HUGE, and American families sat around their radios in the evenings, listening to their favorite entertainers, and no entertainer of that era was bigger than Kate Smith.

Kate was also patriotic. It hurt her to see Americans so depressed and afraid of what the next day would bring. She had hope for America, and faith in her fellow Americans. She wanted to do something to cheer them up, so she went to the famous American song-writer, Irving Berlin (who also wrote "White Christmas") and asked him to write a song that would make Americans feel good again about their country. When she described what she was looking for, he said he had just the song for her.

He went to his files and found a song that he had written, but never published, 22 years before, in 1917. He gave it to her and she worked on it with her studio orchestra. She and Irving Berlin were not sure how the song would be received by the public, but both agreed they would not take any profits from God Bless America. Any profits would go to the Boy Scouts of America. Over the years, the Boy Scouts have received millions of dollars in royalties from this song.

This video starts out with Kate Smith coming into the radio studio with the orchestra and an audience. She introduces the new song for the very first time, and starts singing. After the first couple verses, with her voice in the background still singing, scenes are shown from the 1940 movie ,"You're In The Army Now." At the 4:20 mark of the video you see a young actor in the movie, sitting in an office, reading a paper; it's Ronald Reagan.

To this day, God Bless America stirs our patriotic feelings and pride in our country. Back in 1940, when Kate Smith went looking for a song to raise the spirits of her fellow Americans, I doubt whether she realized just how successful the results would be for her fellow Americans during those years of hardship and worry..... and for many generations of Americans to follow. Now that you know the story of the song, I hope you'll enjoy it and treasure it even more.

Many people don't know there's a lead in to the song since it usually starts with "God Bless America." Here is the entire song as originally sung. Play the recording

VA’s Shinseki has his critics
Submitted by: Ed Simpson
11 November 2013
Capt. Eric K. Shinseki was in pain and a sedative-induced fog when a trauma nurse spoke to him at an Army evacuation hospital in 1970 in Da Nang, Vietnam. He’d been helicoptered there for emergency surgery after tripping a land mine that blew off half his foot. more>>

Vet Specials
Submitted by: Ed Simpson
11 November 2013

There are a number of businesses that offer discounts to veterans on Veterans Day, others give discounts to veterans and their dependents year round. Here are some who provide discounts (registration may be required).

Lowe's and Home Depot discounts
2013 Veterans Day Free Meals and Discounts
Applebee's, Starbucks, Outback, Olive Garden, JCPenney & more
Free Park Admissions for Veterans Day 2013

An American Hero
Submitted by: Jerry Ledzinski
28 November 2013
May of 68, anybody know where you were then??
An amazing nine minutes............
A man to look up to and emulate, this is a true American that loves his country and fellow man!


We don't get to hear stories like this often enough. Presentation to US Air Force Academy cadets. One hell of a Man, one hell of an American!

Peace Day and The Fallen Project
9,000 Fallen Soldiers Etched into the Sand
Submitted by: Chuck Moseley
24 October 2013
"Andy Moss and myself from Sand In Your Eye developed the idea The Fallen (19) of the Fallen Project together to mark Peace Day. The objective was to make a visual representation of 9000 people drawn in the sand which equates the number of Civilians, Germans Forces and Allies that died during the D-day landings, 6th June during WWII as an example of what happens in the absence of peace." more>>

Debarquement en Normandie
Debarking on Normandy Beach Head WWll
Submitted by: Chuck Moseley
12 October 2013
Everyone in our age group know of the heroic accomplishments of The Greatest Generation during World War II and the sacrifices they made. The PowerPoint Slide Show at this link provides a pictorial recounting of the days leading up to 6 June 1944 and the days following. This is a large file (5.8MB) so be patient with the download. You will find it worth the wait.

Vietnam Slide Show
Submitted by: Chuck Noseley
25 September 2013

Incredible pictorial of Vietnam.... Some pictures are repeated and some are graphic but well worth watching.

Things to notice:
Stormin' Norman Schwartzkopf one arm helping carry an ARVN trooper; the accursed 3.5mm rocket launcher tubes and round being carried by the Marine crossing a water course (this USMC was later KIA after this photo); the French female photographer in the background right with a USMC squad (this was in Lwr I Corps) when Marines were to meet an NVA group for a pow-wow...and it is likely that this is the op where she was KIA.
Click here to watch.

2013 National POW/MIA Recognition Day
Submitted by: Rollie Stichweh
20 September 2013
On May 24, 1973, President and First Lady Nixon hosted American Prisoners of War held captive in Vietnam for the largest dinner ever held at the White House.  40 years later, the Richard Nixon Foundation hosted what was perhaps their last reunion gathering.  The collection of television and print news coverage can be seen here.  Click here for the Department of Defense 2013 National POW/MIA Recognition Day Poster.

"We Are Americans"
9 September 2013

Ronald Reagan had a unique ability to communicate in such a way that to hear him was to just feel good about being an American.  Listen and enjoy one of his best efforts on that subject.

WWII Trivia
Submitted by: Paul Schultz
2 September 2013

You might enjoy this from Col D. G. Swinford, USMC, Ret and a history buff. You would really have to dig deep to get this kind of ringside seat to history:

  1. The first German serviceman killed in WW II was killed by the Japanese (China, 1937). The first American serviceman killed was killed by the Russians ( Finland1940); highest ranking American killed was Lt Gen Lesley McNair, killed by the US Army Air Corps. So much for allies.
  2. The youngest US serviceman was 12 year old: Calvin Graham, USN. He was wounded and given a Dishonorable Discharge for lying about his age. His benefits were later restored by act of Congress.
  3. At the time of Pearl Harbor , the top US Navy command was called CINCUS (pronounced 'sink us'); the shoulder patch of the US Army's 45th Infantry division was the Swastika, and Hitler's private train was named 'Amerika.' All three were soon changed for PR purposes.
  4. More US servicemen died in the Air Corps than the Marine Corps. While completing the required 30 missions, an airman's chance of being killed was 71%.
  5. Generally speaking, there was no such thing as an average fighter pilot. You were either an ace or a target. For instance, Japanese Ace Hiroyoshi Nishizawa shot down over 80 planes. He died while a passenger on a cargo plane.
  6. It was a common practice on fighter planes to load every 5th round with a tracer round to aid in aiming. This was a mistake. Tracers had different ballistics so (at long range) if your tracers were hitting the target 80% of your rounds were missing. Worse yet tracers instantly told your enemy he was under fire and from which direction. Worst of all was the practice of loading a string of tracers at the end of the belt to tell you that you were out of ammo. This was definitely not something you wanted to tell the enemy. Units that stopped using tracers saw their success rate nearly double and their loss rate go down.
  7. When allied armies reached the Rhine, the first thing men did was pee in it. This was pretty universal from the lowest private to Winston Churchill (who made a big show of it) and Gen. Patton (who had himself photographed in the act).
  8. German Me-264 bombers were capable of bombing New York City, but they decided it wasn't worth the effort.
  9. German submarine U-120 was sunk by a malfunctioning toilet.
  10. Among the first 'Germans' captured at Normandy were several Koreans. They had been forced to fight for the Japanese Army until they were captured by the Russians and forced to fight for the Russian Army until they were captured by the Germans and forced to fight for the German Army until they were captured by the US Army.
  11. Following a massive naval bombardment, 35,000 United States and Canadian troops stormed ashore at Kiska, in the Aleutian Islands; 21 troops were killed in the assault on the island. It could have been worse if there had been any Japanese on the island.
  12. The last marine killed in WW2 was killed by a can of spam. He was on the ground as a POW in Japan when rescue flights dropping food and supplies came over, the package came apart in the air and a stray can of spam hit him and killed him.
Vietnam Memorial Wall
Interesting Veterans Statistics off the Vietnam Memorial Wall
Submitted by: Jimmy Hennon
29 August 2013
There are 58,267 names now listed on that polished black wall, including those added in 2010.

The names are arranged in the order in which they were taken from us by date and within each date the names are alphabetized. It is hard to believe it is 36 years since the last casualties.

The first known casualty was Richard B. Fitzgibbon, of North Weymouth , Mass. Listed by the U.S. Department of Defense as having been killed on June 8, 1956. His name is listed on the Wall with that of his son, Marine Corps Lance Cpl. Richard B. Fitzgibbon III, who was killed on Sept. 7, 1965.

  • There are three sets of fathers and sons on the Wall.
  • 39,996 on the Wall were just 22 or younger.
  • 8,283 were just 19 years old.
  • The largest age group, 33,103 were 18 years old.
  • 12 soldiers on the Wall were 17 years old
  • 5 soldiers on the Wall were 16 years old.
  • One soldier, PFC Dan Bullock was 15 years old.
  • 997 soldiers were killed on their first day in Vietnam ..
  • 1,448 soldiers were killed on their last day in Vietnam ..
  • 31 sets of brothers are on the Wall.
  • Thirty one sets of parents lost two of their sons.
  • 54 soldiers attended Thomas Edison High School in Philadelphia . I wonder why so many from one school.
  • 8 Women are on the Wall. Nursing the wounded.
  • 244 soldiers were awarded the Medal of Honor during the Vietnam War; 153 of them are on the Wall.
  • Beallsville, Ohio with a population of 475 lost 6 of her sons.
  • West Virginia had the highest casualty rate per capita in the nation. There are 711 West Virginians on the Wall.

The Marines of Morenci - They led some of the scrappiest high school football and basketball teams that the little Arizona copper town of Morenci (pop. 5,058) had ever known and cheered. They enjoyed roaring beer busts. In quieter moments, they rode horses along the Coronado Trail, stalked deer in the Apache National Forest . And in the patriotic camaraderie typical of Morenci's mining families, the nine graduates of Morenci High enlisted as a group in the Marine Corps. Their service began on Independence Day, 1966. Only 3 returned home.

The Buddies of Midvale - LeRoy Tafoya, Jimmy Martinez, Tom Gonzales were all boyhood friends and lived on three consecutive streets in Midvale, Utah on Fifth, Sixth and Seventh avenues. They lived only a few yards apart. They played ball at the adjacent sandlot ball field. And they all went to Vietnam . In a span of 16 dark days in late 1967, all three would be killed. LeRoy was killed on Wednesday, Nov. 22, the fourth anniversary of John F. Kennedy's assassination. Jimmy died less than 24 hours later on Thanksgiving Day. Tom was shot dead assaulting the enemy on Dec. 7, Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day.

The most casualty deaths for a single day was on January 31, 1968 ~ 245 deaths.

The most casualty deaths for a single month was May 1968 - 2,415 casualties were incurred.

For most Americans who read this they will only see the numbers that the Vietnam War created. To those of us who survived the war, and to the families of those who did not, we see the faces, we feel the pain that these numbers created. We are, until we too pass away, haunted with these numbers, because they were our friends, fathers, husbands, wives, sons and daughters. There are no noble wars, just noble warriors.

Middle East Conflict War Memorial
Submitted by: Steve Ganshert and Frank Meier
17 June 2013
A memorial has been established in Marseilles, Illinois to honor those lost in the Middle East conflicts. See the video at

Kilroy Was Here
Submitted by: Paul Schultz
13 June 2013
If you don't remember seeing Kilroy graffiti, I think you will enjoy this.  During WWII years, Kilroy was very often seen on buildings, etc.  I had never heard the story behind Kilroy either, so was glad this was emailed.     Enjoy

Kilroy Was Here

Click here for the rest of the story.

Paul Schultz

Heroism, Humility and Leadership
The Janitor and the Medal of Honor
Submitted by: Bob Clover
1 June 2013
"William 'Bill' Crawford certainly was an unimpressive figure, one you could easily overlook during a hectic day at the U.S. Air Force Academy. Mr. Crawford, as most of us referred to him back in the late 1970s, was our squadron janitor."  Read the full story at

Col Raye Special Forces
Submitted by: Steven Harris
3 June 2013
It was well recognized that Martha Raye endured less comfort and more danger than any other Vietnam entertainer.

The most unforgivable oversight of TV is that her shows were not taped. I was unaware of her credentials or where she is buried. Somehow I just can't see Brittany Spears, Paris Hilton, or Jessica Simpson doing what this woman (and the other USO women, including Ann Margaret & Joey Heatherton) did for our troops in past wars.

Most of the old time entertainers were made of a lot sterner stuff than today's crop of activists' bland whiners.

The following is from an Army Aviator who takes a trip down memory lane:

"It was just before Thanksgiving '67 and we were ferrying dead and wounded from a large GRF west of Pleiku. We had run out of body bags by noon, so the Hook (CH-47 CHINOOK) was pretty rough in the back. All of a sudden, we heard a 'take-charge' woman's voice in the rear. There was the singer and actress, Martha Raye, with a SF (Special Forces) beret and jungle fatigues, with subdued markings, helping the wounded into the Chinook, and carrying the dead aboard.

'Maggie' had been visiting her SF 'heroes' out 'west'. We took off, short of fuel, and headed to the USAF hospital pad at Pleiku. As we all started unloading our sad pax's, a 'Smart Mouth' USAF Captain said to Martha.... "Ms Ray, with all these dead and wounded to process, there would not be time for your show!"

To all of our surprise, she pulled on her right collar and said ......"Captain, see this eagle?  I am a full 'Bird' in the US Army Reserve, and on this is a 'Caduceus' which means I am a Nurse, with a surgical, take me to your wounded!"

He said, "Yes ma'am.... follow me."  Several times at the Army Field Hospital in Pleiku, she would 'cover' a surgical shift, giving a nurse a well-deserved break.

Martha is the only woman buried in the SF (Special Forces) cemetery at Ft Bragg.

Hand Salute! A great lady..