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The Corps’Official Magazine www.marines.mil Winter 2004 THE MOMENTS THAT DEFINED AYEAR IN THE CORPS S P E C I A L I S S U E In Revıew

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The Corps Official Magazine

www.marines.mil

Winter 2004

In RevewTHE MOMENTS THAT DEFINED A YEAR IN THE CORPS

Its your life. Make a difference.

www.marines.com

OnPointAL ASAD AIR BASE, Iraq An AH-1W Cobra helicopter cutsthrough the sky as the sun sets here in the Al Anbar Province. More than 250 flights are coordinated each day in support of ongoing operations of Operation Iraqi Freedom II.Photo by Staff Sgt. Chad McMeen

Winter 2OO4

GougeVolume 2 | Number 3 | www.marines.mil

2OO4 In Review4 | OperationsMarines continued to fight the Global War on Terrorism in 2004. They fought insurgents in Mosul, Fallujah, An Najaf and other Iraqi cities and offered aid to Iraqi citizens. They searched for Osama bin Laden and other al-Qaida and Taliban leaders in Afghanistan. They quelled unrest in Haiti and Liberia. In operations around the world, Marines fought against tyranny and aided those in need.

ORUZGAN PROVINCE, Afghanistan Marines thread their way through a narrow village alley here in their search for weapons caches and anticoalition fighters during Operation Thunder Road June 30. The Marines are with C Company, Battalion Landing Team 1st Battalion, 6th Marines, the ground combat element of the 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit. This was the final major combat operation undertaken by the MEU in Afghanistan. The operation began June 27 and ran through July 10.Photo by Gunnery Sgt. Keith A. Milks

14 | DeploymentThe operational tempo of 2004 took Marines to distant lands far from friends and family. During these chaotic and often dangerous deployments, Marines established a little bit of home. They celebrated holidays, set up daily routines and remembered loved ones left behind.

Semper Fidelis1

You are the Generation of Hope, establishing liberty and freedom, not only for America but for Iraq,

Afghanistan and the rest of the world. Please accept these gifts as tokens of the hope and pride we feel regarding each of you. They cannot truly express the gratitude of a nation and pale in comparison to the hope you bring and give through your honor, courage and commitment. Thank you, Merry Christmas and may God bless you. Semper Fidelis.

GougeFamily | 24Life was a little quieter at the bases, camps and stations with Marines deployed but families persevered. Spouses worked, paid bills, took care of kids and missed their Marines. They cried when Marines left and rejoiced when they returned.

The Corps Official Magazine Special Issue Winter 2004 www.marines.mil/magazine

Pavel IvanovFather of a Marine, wrote in a letter expressing his support for Americas warrior youth. During the 2004 Christmas season he helped organize Operation Stocking Stuffer, which delivered more than 700 gift-filled stockings to Marines deployed to Iraq.

Commandant of the Marine Corps Gen. Michael W. Hagee Sgt. Maj. of the Marine Corps Sgt. Maj. John L. EstradaM A R I N E C O R P S N E W S

Editor-in-Chief Lt. Col. Greg Reeder Managing Editor Gunnery Sgt. Glenn Holloway Editor Staff Sgt. Cindy Fisher Editor Staff Sgt. David L. CrockettP U B L I C A T I O N D E S I G N

28 | TrainingTraining constantly hones Marines skills. Day in and day out Marines train. Marine Corps training is gritty and down in the dirt as rigorous and realistic as possible. This is what prepares Marines for combat. Training is the essential element that makes the Corps Americas 911 force. 2004 was no exception, when not engaged in battle or supporting combat, Marines redoubled their efforts to remain on point and sharp.

Bates Creative Group, LLCMarines (USPS 013-867) is published seven times annually (quarterly, plus three special editions) by the Division of Public Affairs, Marine Corps News Branch, HQMC, U.S. Marine Corps (PA) 3000 Marine Corps Pentagon, Washington D.C. 20350-3000. Periodicals-class postage paid at Washington, D.C., and additional mailing stations. The Secretary of the Navy has determined that this publication is necessary in the transaction of business, required by law, of the Department of the Navy. Funds for printing this publication have been approved by the Navy Publications and Printing Policy Committee. All photos not credited are official USMC photos. Postmaster: Send change of address to: Marines, Commandant of the Marines Corps, Headquarters Marine Corps, U.S. Marine Corps (PA), 3000 Marine Corps Pentagon, Washington D.C. 203503000 or e-mail to [email protected] Reader Comments: Marines, Marines, Commandant of the Marines Corps, Headquarters Marine Corps, U.S. Marine Corps (PA), 3000 Marine Corps Pentagon, Washington D.C. 203503000 or e-mail to [email protected] U B S C R I P T I O N I N F O

People | 38The Marine Corps is a conglomeration of individuals. Each has a story to tell. They come from all walks of life. Most are American citizens, but not all. They have myriad reasons for joining. Their common tie is that each chose to make the sacrifices necessary to claim the title Marine.

48 | LibertyMarines work hard, but when the work is done its time to play. Off-duty, Marines ski, surf and hike. They win marathons and visit amusement parks. Even during deployments, Marines take breaks for libo. Whether playing baseball in makeshift stadiums in Iraq or boxing in the desert, Marines this year made every minute count.

Official DoD Units (Marine & Non-Marine): Send a fax, letter, or e-mail requesting an individual activity code to: Commandant of the Marines Corps, Headquarters Marine Corps, U.S. Marine Corps (PA), 3000 Marine Corps Pentagon, Washington D.C. 20350-3000. The letter must contain a complete mailing address, point of contact, phone number, and number of copies required. Fax the request to 703/692-1814. E-mail: [email protected] Personal/Civilian Subscriptions: Request your one-year subscription from the Superintendent of Documents, U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, D.C. 20402. Personal subscriptions can be ordered via the Internet at www.marines.mil/order, or by calling 202/512-1800.

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SoundOffNew Generation of Marines Add to Corps Legacywith honor and respect for the Marines who went before. We are told tales of past glory of Marines fighting seemingly insurmountable odds to take a hill, defeat the enemy, or save lives. These heroes of the past seem larger than life. This past year has proven that todays Marines have the same courage and indomitable spirit that propelled Marines like Dan Daly, John Basilone, Mitchell Paige and Smedley Butler to heroism. Courage and heroism flourished overseas and here at home. Marines like Cpl. Jason Dunham and Sgt. Rafael Peralta acted selflessly to save fellow Marines. Dunham, a 22-year-old from Scio, N.Y., sacrificed his life by throwing his helmet and himself over a grenade to protect his fellow Marines April 14 in Karabilah, Iraq. Peralta, a Mexican-American from San Diego who received his American citizenship after he joined the Corps, pulled a grenade under his body, absorbing the explosion and saving the lives of four other Marines Nov. 14 in Fallujah, Iraq. Even when not engaged in battle, Marines exemplify what it means to be one of the few. While visiting family during October in Livingston, Mont., 27-year-old Lance Cpl. Austin Stallard put his recently acquired fire fighting skills to good use. He coordinated the rescue of a mother and her son from a house fire then extinguished the blaze with a garden hose. These courageous acts represent only a handful of heroic deeds performed by Marines this past year. Throughout 2004, Marines in Iraq, Afghanistan and around the globe put their lives on the line to fight the Global War on Terrorism. They defended democracy and protected freedom in Haiti and other hot spots. And Marines made countless sacrifices, leaving family and friends, working long hours in inhospitable climates, all in service to the Corps and our nation. Marines also witnessed sorrow. We mourned as the flag-draped coffins of fallen warriors returned home. Our newspapers headlines told of Marines engaged in bitter fighting in the streets of Iraqi cities. We watched brutal video clips of civilians murdered by insurgents. Some of these Marines came back to us forever changed by combat bearing external and internal wounds. This special issue of Marines captures only a glimpse of the many events of 2004. It is filled with examples of courage and esprit de corps by men and women on the front lines. It tells of the sacrifices and triumphs by Marines and families at home while Marines continue to add new chapters to the lore and tradition that the Corps holds dear.

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VERY GRADUATE OF

MARINE CORPS RECRUIT TRAINING IS INSTILLED

Winter 2004

From the Editor

FALLUJAH, Iraq Gunnery Sgt. Ryan P. Shane pulls a fatally wounded Marine to safety while under fire during Operation Al Fajr Nov. 9. Shane was severely wounded seconds later by enemy fire. Under suppression fire, a group ran out and rescued Shane and recovered the other Marine. Shane, with B Company, 1st Battalion, 8th Marines, Regimental Combat Team 7, was rushed out of the city, treated at a hospital and is now recovering from his injuries.Photo by Cpl. Joel A. Chaverri

2004 in Review www.marines.mil

On the CoverRefueling Over Iraq A pair of AV-8B Harriers prepare to refuel from an Air Force KC-10 attached to the 380th Air Expeditionary Wing over Iraq Oct. 3, 2004. Photo by Tech. Sgt. Erik Gudmundson Digital Illustration by Roger Selvage, Bates Creative Group

Semper Fidelis, Marines

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Winter 2004

2004 in Review

www.marines.mil

Operations

FALLUJAH, Iraq Pfc. Joseph Temple moves with a tank from A Company, 1st Tank Battalion, during a patrol rehearsal here May 4. Marines repositioned forces outside the city to allow Iraqi forces to take over security operations. The Fallujah Brigades 1st Battalion, the new Iraqi force, was composed of former elements of the Iraqi army. The Fallujah Brigade was disbanded in September. Temple, from Henderson, Nev., is with 3rd Platoon, K Co., 3rd Bn., 4th Marines.Photo by Lance Cpl. Kevin C. Quihuis Jr.

Year in ReviewON THIS DATE:

01:05

2004

OKINAWA, Japan The Dragons of Marine Medium Helicopter Squadron 265 (Reinforced), attached to the 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit, celebrate 60,000 flight hours without a Class-A mishap. A Class-A mishap is any incident that results in death or monetary damage equal to or more than $1 million.5

Operations

www.marines.mil

AL TAQADDUM, Iraq Plane captains Sgts. David R. Schradermeier and Jamie D. Shepler and Cpl. John J. Gato escort the RQ-2B Pioneer unmanned aerial vehicle down the flight line in preparation for takeoff here June 10. They will perform a series of tests before launching the aircraft to ensure the flight is problem free. The crew is with Marine Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Squadron 2, Marine Air Command Group 38, 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing. The Marines of VMU-2 flew the UAV more than 1,000 hours in the three months prior to June in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom.Photo by Lance Cpl. Matthew T. Rainey

2004 in Review

FORWARD OPERATING BASE KALSU, Iraq Kwinto, a 7-year-old BelgianMalinois military police dog, sits behind his protective gear, which includes a flak jacket, safety goggles and booties made for canines, Nov. 5. The dog and his handler, Sgt. Ken Porras, are with the 24th Marine Expeditionary Unit. Porras, 32, is a North Bergen, N.J., native with the Military Police Detachment of MEU Service Support Group 24. The two search for explosives at vehicle checkpoints, on security patrols and during weapons cache sweeps.Photo by Lance Cpl. Sarah A. Beavers

Winter 2004 6

DEY CHOPAN REGION, Afghanistan Army CH-47 Chinook helicopters insert Marines from Reconnaissance Platoon, Battalion Landing Team 1st Battalion, 6th Marines, into the region during Operation Asbury Park June 4. Various elements of the 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit participated in the mission. A sizable force of Afghan Militia Force fighters accompanied the Marine task force, and midway through the operation a second force was inserted to set up blocking positions to deny the enemys paths of escape. During these battles, close air support played a key role. Marine attack helicopters and Harrier jets, Army AH-64 Apache attack helicopters and Air Force A-10 Thunderbolt II attack aircraft and B-1B Lancer strategic bombers joined the fray.Photo by Capt. Jon P. Connolly

PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti Sgt. Maj. of the Marine Corps John L. Estrada talks with the Marines and sailors of Combined Joint Task Force-Haiti and Marine Air-Ground Task Force 8 here May 11. Estrada addressed many of the service members' concerns, including redeployment and operations in Iraq. Both task forces are here to support Operation Secure Tomorrow. The operation began Feb. 29 when multinational forces arrived in Haiti to quell civil unrest throughout the capital, Port-au-Prince. Other objectives of Operation Secure Tomorrow included supporting a peaceful and constitutional political process and preparing for the arrival of a follow-on U.N. stabilization force.Photo by Staff Sgt. Timothy S. Edwards

Year in ReviewON THIS DATE:

01:17

2004

IWO JIMA, Japan Nearly 59 years after the battle that played a pivotal role in the Corps history, Marines from 7th Platoon, 2nd Fleet Anti-Terrorism Security Team Company visit the island to commemorate its anniversary. The trip, which included a climb up Mount Suribachi, was one of the platoon's last operational events. The unit left Japan Jan. 22 for its homeport of Yorktown Naval Weapons Station in Yorktown, Va.7

Operations

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CAMP FALLUJAH, Iraq Twelve Marines and one sailor wounded in action received the Purple Heart here April 24 from Brig. Gen. Richard S. Kramlich, commanding general of 1st Force Service Support Group. Most received their wounds during the opening days of Operation Vigilant Resolve, launched April 4 to bring order to Fallujah. All of the recipients are assigned to Combat Service Support Battalion 1, which provides logistical support to Marines operating in and around Fallujah. Despite the wounds, all have returned to duty. Before he awarded the medal, Kramlich spoke of the significance of wearing the Purple Heart saying that Americans will be reassured that there are people men and women like you all out there that are ready to do whatever it takes.Photo by Staff Sgt. Bill Lisbon

2004 in Review

AL ASAD, Iraq A CH-53E Super Stallion lifts an F-7 Airguard, the Chinese version of a Russian MiG-21, from the ground here May 14. The heavy-hauler, from Marine Heavy Helicopter Squadron 465, used its dual-point lift system to move the jet to a less-populated location aboard the air base. More information on the F-7 Airguard, which weighs more than 11,000 pounds, can be found at www.combatair craft.com. The lift demonstrated the air and ground crews skills of tactical recoveries of aircraft and personnel, missions they often perform on the battlefield.Photo by Sgt. Nathan K. LaForte

Winter 2004

SOUTHCENTRAL IRAQ 1st Lt. Vanessa Engel of the 24th Marine Expeditionary Unit plays pat-a-cake with an Iraqi schoolgirl during a visit to an elementary school here Oct. 16. The visit was part of the MEUs ongoing back-to-school campaign, which provides local Iraqi school children with water, stickers, balloons, sports equipment and backpacks full of educational supplies. Engel, 27, is a Mount Prospect, Ill., native and adjutant with the headquarters detachment of MEU Service Support Group 24.Photo by Lance Cpl. Sarah A. Beavers

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FALLUJAH, Iraq An Iraqi Security Force soldier provides security around the corner of a house for Marines and other Iraqi soldiers here Nov. 10. Iraqi security forces and Marines recently took the first steps in creating a peaceful and more stable Fallujah by aggressively targeting anti-Iraqi forces during Operation Al Fajr. The ISF and Marine forces fought from house to house in the nearly abandoned city, clearing buildings of insurgents and terrorist weapons caches as they went.Photo by Lance Cpl. T. J. Kaemmerer

PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti Cpl. Sherod C. Marks, from Queens, N.Y., provides security during a cordon and knock operation with members of the Haitian National Police here March 28. The operation was conducted to investigate a live-fire incident in the area a few nights prior. With about 50 Marines and sailors and four members of the HNP involved, the operation went smoothly. Year in Review 02:08 We obtained some useful ON THIS DATE: 2004 information and confiscated two shotguns and some ammunition, KUWAIT CITY, Kuwait Brigade Service Support said Capt. Bill A. Sablan, Weapons Company Group 1 began offloading gear from Maritime commander.Photo by Staff Sgt. Timothy S. Edwards

Prepositioning Force ships. The major commands involved in Operation Iraqi Freedom I Marine Expeditionary Force, 1st Marine Division, 1st Force Service Support Group and the 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing determined the equipment they would need based on the missions they were expected to perform.9

Operations

TARIN KOWT, Afghanistan Petty Officer 1st Class Stephen Cavin examines an Afghan village elder during a medical civil affairs project here May 6. Cavin is a corpsman with Battalion Landing Team 1st Battalion, 6th Marines, the BLT of the 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit. A comprehensive civil affairs campaign undertaken by the MEU, in concert with the unit's combat operations, sought to engender good will between coalition forces and the Afghan people and to make tangible, long-lasting differences in their lives.Photo by Sgt. Matt Preston

CENTRAL AFGHANISTAN 1st Lt. Thomas Crossen, of Coldwater, Mich., tells Sgt. Ryan West, of Lafayette, Ind., where to employ his squad during a firefight with anticoalition militia here June 2 during Operation Asbury Park. Instead of laying improvised explosive devices or taking potshots at passing convoys, the Taliban and anticoalition militia factions decided to stand their ground and fight. In doing so, they suffered one of their soundest defeats in months. More than 85 enemy fighters were confirmed killed and as many as 40 others estimated killed. A handful of Marines were wounded by enemy fire, all have since returned to duty. Both Marines are assigned to C Company, Battalion Landing Team 1st Battalion, 6th Marines, the ground combat element of the 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit.Photo by Gunnery Sgt. Keith A. Milks

2004 in Review

www.marines.mil

AL QAIM, Iraq Three Marines provide security while others conduct a cordon and knock on known terrorists insurgents houses here Nov. 10. The Marines, from C Company, 1st Battalion, 7th Marines, 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit, freed Iraqis being held hostage by the insurgents and discovered several weapons caches on the property. The cordon and knock was the first time the Marines with the company used helicopters as a means of insertion.Photo by Lance Cpl. Christopher G. Graham

Winter 2004 10

EUPHRATES RIVER, Iraq A Marine in a watercraft looks for suspicious activities, objects and people along the shores of the Euphrates River here Oct. 1. Marines from Small Craft Company patrol the waterways and shorelines in boats as they travel to checkpoints along the river. The company is part of Battalion Landing Team 1st Battalion, 2nd Marines, the BLT of the 24th Marine Expeditionary Unit.Photo by Lance Cpl. Zachary R. Frank

FALLUJAH, Iraq Amphibious assault vehicles resupply B Company, Battalion Landing Team 1st Battalion, 3rd Marines, with chow, water and ammunition here Nov. 18. The tracks played a vital role in the Marines push through the city by providing troop transport, fire support, medical evacuations and resupply missions. The Marines have been conducting these missions since the initial assault into the city Nov. 8.Photo by Lance Cpl. Will Lathrop

Year in ReviewON THIS DATE:

02:19

2004

CLARK AIR BASE, Republic of the Philippines Exercise Balikatan 04 begins. More than 125 Marines and sailors with Marine Heavy Helicopter Squadron 362 arrive at Clark Air Base to take part in the exercise. The Marine Corps and the Air Force trained with the armed forces of the Philippines in this bilateral exercise. About 2,500 U.S. troops and 2,300 Philippine forces participated.11

Operations

WESTERN IRAQ In a moment of crisis, Marines stand watch as other members of the convoy tend to one of two Marines injured when the seven-ton truck they were driving overturned en route to Camp Korean Village in western Iraq. The trucks central tire inflation system malfunctioned, causing the thousands of gallons of water it was hauling to shift. The Marine manning the machine gun was thrown from the turret. Both Marines involved in the accident suffered only minor injuries. The Marines of Combat Service Support Company 119 are responsible for delivering food, water, mail and other supplemental items to the remote areas here.Photo by Lance Cpl. Travis J. Kaemmerer

FALLUJAH, Iraq An M-1A1 Abrams Main Battle Tank fires its cannon into the city during Operation Al Fajr Nov. 15. The tank and other elements of 3rd Battalion, 1st Marines, began their assault on the northern edge of the city Nov. 8. The Marines and corpsmen of the battalion are among coalition forces called upon by the interim Iraqi government to clear the city of the insurgents and foreign fighters.Photo by Cpl. Jan Bender

www.marines.mil

AL TASH REFUGEE CAMP , Iraq Marines from the 1st MarineDivision civil affairs team deliver boxes of medical supplies to the Kurdish refugees here May 11. The refugees have little potable water, virtually no sanitation system, no electricity and limited access to medical equipment. Freedom and Peace Trust of Boston, a non-government organization, donated the bandages, gloves and medications to the people. During the trip, Marines, sailors and soldiers delivered the assorted medical supplies and two 30,000-gallon water storage units.Photo by Cpl. Paula M. Fitzgerald

Winter 2004

2004 in Review

FALLUJAH, Iraq An amphibious assault vehicle knocks down a wall surrounding a compound here Nov. 20. Two squads with 3rd Platoon, C Company, 1st Battalion, 3rd Marines, took fire from insurgents in the compound the night before. In the ensuing few hours, the two squads searched nine houses, uncovering several AK-47s and ammunition caches.Photo by Sgt. Clinton Firstbrook

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SOUTHCENTRAL AFGHANISTAN A military police vehicle from MEU Service Support Group 22 plows through a river during a combat operation here June 29. MSSG-22 is the combat service support element of the 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit. As the heads and tails of convoys, the MPs act as scouts, stopping traffic as necessary and conducting searches of people and vehicles. The MPs search for weapons, materials for improvised explosive devices, and terrorist paraphernalia.Photo by Gunnery Sgt. Keith A. Milks

SOUTHCENTRAL AFGHANISTAN Marines kick through a blocked door during Operation Cadillac Ranch, a cordon and knock operation here May 22. The Marines are with B Company, Battalion Landing Team 1st Battalion, 6th Marines, the ground combat element of the 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit. The unit's mission was to locate caches of arms, ammunition, and explosives hidden by Taliban and anticoalition factions operating in the region, Year in Review 02:26 and to deny terrorist ON THIS DATE: 2004 factions the sanctuaries from which they had long attacked the Afghan government WASHINGTON Department of Defense officials and coalition forces.Photo by Cpl. Jemssy Alvarez

announce the final approval of two new medals the Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary and Global War on Terrorism Service medals.13

Winter 2004

2004 in Review

www.marines.mil

14

Deployment

CAMP FALLUJAH, Iraq Marines gather in an auditoriumhere April 16 to remember Lance Cpl. Levi T. Angell, 20, from St. Louis, Minn. Angell, a truck driver with Combat Service Support Company 111, was killed in action April 8 while delivering supplies in support of Operation Vigilant Resolve. He was the first Marine from the company to die in combat. He made you feel like you were family, said friend Lance Cpl. Nolan H. Peterson, 22, a truck driver who grew up near Angell in Barnum, another small town in northern Minnesota. That feeling is important because were all so far away from our own families.Photo by Staff Sgt. Bill Lisbon

Year in ReviewON THIS DATE:

03:05

2004

MCAGCC Twentynine Palms, Calif. The Bronze Star with a V, the nations fourth highest award for bravery, heroism or meritorious service, is awarded to 1st Lt. Joshua R. Bates for his actions as a platoon commander for Combined Antiarmor Team Red, Weapons Company, 1st Battalion, 7th Marine Regiment, during Operation Iraqi Freedom. The V signifies the award resulted from an act of combat heroism or valor.15

Deployment

CAMP FALLUJAH, Iraq Lance Cpl. Matthew Palacios reads a card sent by Ray and Beth Sears in the Bravo Surgical Companys trauma ward here Dec. 1 . The Sears, from Tilton, N.H, sent cards and cookies to lift the spirits of service members deployed to Iraq. In one card they wrote, thanks for protecting our freedoms. Were thinking and praying for all the troops. Take care and stay strong. Palacios, 19, is a native of Lorraine, Ohio, and a combat engineer attached to 2nd Platoon, B Co., 1st Battalion, 8th Marine Regiment. He was wounded during Operation Al Fajr.Photo by Sgt. Clinton Firstbrook

www.marines.mil

CAMP TAQADDUM, Iraq A sign at the gate here reminds all who exit the camps perimeter of the potential danger of insurgent attacks along Iraqs highways. As of Aug. 21, three platoons with B Company, 2nd Military Police Battalion, from Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune, N.C., have escorted more than 400 convoys with more than 8,000 vehicles across 75,000 miles, said Capt. Amy R. Ebitz, the company commander. Two other platoons operate out of different bases in the Al Anbar Province.Photo by Staff Sgt. Bill Lisbon\

Winter 2004 16

2004 in Review

ASH SHAFIYAH, Iraq Lance Cpl. Brandy L. Guerrero, kisses an Iraqi baby waiting to be examined during a humanitarian assistance operation here Nov. 12. Guerrero is a radio operator with Communications Detachment, MEU Service Support Group 11, 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit. MSSG-11 organized the medical/ dental civilian assistance program visit with help from the soldiers of Detachment 1, C Company, 451st Civil Affairs Battalion, attached to the MEU. The Marines, sailors and soldiers processed 464 Iraqis and provided medical and dental treatment to more than 115. Others received food, water and gifts, including soccer balls, toys, backpacks, school supplies and hygiene items.Photo by Gunnery Sgt. Chago Zapata

CAMP FALLUJAH, Iraq Marines, sailors and soldiers with Regimental Combat Team 1 enjoy Independence Day in and out of the swimming pool at the Rest and Relaxation Center here July 4. The Fourth of July bash included food, sports, a talent show and a disc jockey. It's important to celebrate Independence Day, especially in Iraq, to remind everyone why we're here, said Master Sgt. Albis Delrosario, the staff noncommissioned officer in charge of the center. RCT-1 is part of 1st Marine Year in Review 03:15 Division, I Marine ON THIS DATE: 2004 Expeditionary Force, based at Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton, Calif. HAITI Combined Joint Task Force-Haiti officiallyPhoto by Sgt. Jose E. Guillen

activates and Marine Brig. Gen. Ronald S. Coleman assumes command of the Multinational Interim Force. The task force consists of the air element of a Marine Air-Ground Task Force and French, Canadian and Chilean forces. It is here to help bring stability to the people of Haiti.17

Deployment

AL ASAD, Iraq Sgt. Maj. SteveM. Golder meets Santa Claus and tells him what he wants for Christmas. Golder is the squadron sergeant major for Marine Medium Helicopter Squadron 774, Marine Aircraft Group 16, 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing. Santa visited the squadron during a Christmas party here to deliver presents and lift the Marines' spirits.Photo by Sgt. Nathan K. LaForte

USS BELLEAU WOOD, SAN DIEGO Marines from the 11th Marine ExpeditionaryUnit board USS Belleau Wood here March 23. The LHA is the flagship for Expeditionary Strike Group 3, comprised of amphibious warships USS Belleau Wood, Denver, and Comstock; destroyers USS Hopper and Preble; cruiser USS Mobile Bay; and fast attack submarine USS Charlotte. This force combines with elements of the Camp Pendleton-based 11th MEU to produce a national defense asset capable of conducting sustained combat operations and humanitarian assistance from sea or shore. Brig. Gen. Joseph V. Medina took command of ESG-3 in November of last year, becoming the first Marine officer to command an ESG. ESG-3 deployed in June.Photo by Petty Officer 3rd Class Alex Stanislawski

Winter 2004 18

2004 in Review

www.marines.mil

MCB CAMP PENDLETON, Calif. Cpl. Andy Vaney has blood drawn at the 13 Area Medical Clinic here July 1. More than 175 Individual Ready Reserve Marines are at Camp Talega training or waiting to replace Marines killed or wounded in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. These Marines voluntarily left their civilian lives for activation and deployment. Vaney is an infantryman with Mobilization Support Battalion.Photo by Sgt. L.A. Salinas

MCB CAMP LEJEUNE, N.C. Sgt. Peter Stewart typesidentification card information for Marines preparing to board an aircraft bound for Kuwait July 7. Stewart is an administrative clerk with the 24th Marine Expeditionary Unit command element. The Marines traveled to Kuwait first for acclimatization and further training before moving into Iraq.Photo by Lance Cpl. Sarah A. Beavers

Year in ReviewON THIS DATE:

03:26

2004

AFGHANISTAN The United States sends 2,000 Marines to Afghanistan to reinforce the 12,000 troops already here to intensify the hunt for Osama bin Laden and other al-Qaida and Taliban leaders. The U.S. military, together with Pakistani forces, is pursuing terrorists in tribal areas on both sides of the Afghanistan-Pakistan border.19

Deployment

PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti Sgt. Jeremy Garcia reads The Globe, the Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune, N.C., newspaper, while deployed here March 19 for Operation Secure Tomorrow. The Weapons Company, 3rd Battalion, 8th Marine Regiment Marine received the paper and other items from his wife during their first mail call. The U.S.-led multinational interim force of about 3,300 from the United States, France, Chile and Canada started arriving here Feb. 29 to quell civil unrest throughout the city. Photo by Sgt. Ryan S. Scranton

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FALLUJAH, Iraq Marines of A Company, 1st Battalion, 8th Marine Regiment, occupy an abandoned house in one of the neighborhoods here Nov. 14. During the push into Fallujah as part of Operation Al Fajr, Marines set up temporary bases in abandoned houses and buildings. For days, these were the only places Marines were able to unwind and rest from the fighting outside. The Marines also conducted foot patrols from these bases, checking neighboring houses for weapons caches and documenting those used by the enemy.Photo by Cpl. Randy Bernard

SCHOFIELD BARRACKS, Hawaii Marines from Scout Sniper Platoon, Battalion Landing Team 1st Battalion, 4th Marine Regiment, 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit, take advantage of down time to call friends and family during sustainment training here June 3. The MEU was on its way to support security and stability operations in response to a request from U.S. Central Command for more forces in Iraq.Photo by Cpl. Matthew S. Richards

Winter 2004 20

2004 in Review

WHITE BEACH, Okinawa, Japan Seaman Woo S. Kim carries his gear on board USS Essex here Aug. 16. Kim is a corpsman with Battalion Landing Team 1st Battalion, 3rd Marine Regiment, the ground combat element for the 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit. The MEU, with 2,000 Marines and sailors, is deployed to the Middle East in support Operation Iraqi Freedom. The 31st MEU is the Corps only permanently forward-deployed MEU and is comprised of a command element based in Okinawa; a ground combat element, BLT 1/3 from Kaneohe Bay, Hawaii; an aviation combat element, Marine Medium Helicopter Squadron 265 from Okinawa; and a combat service support element, MEU Service Support Group 31, also based in Okinawa.Photo by Gunnery Sgt. Lawrence Torres III

NEW YORK Lance Cpl. Christopher Edwards and his wife Danielle share a last moment together before Edwards leaves for the Middle East. The reserve Marines of Marine Aerial Refueler Transport Squadron 452 deployed from Stewart Air National Guard Base in Newburgh Aug. 24 in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. This is the units third deployment. It was activated for Operation Enduring Freedom in January 2002, and deployed to Bahrain last year. The unit maintains and flies KC-130T Hercules aircraft.Photo by Cpl. Beth Zimmerman

Year in ReviewON THIS DATE:

04:01

2004

AL ANBAR PROVINCE, Iraq 1st Force Service Support Groups medical logistics section distributes more than $800,000 worth of medical supplies to Iraqis in this province. The supplies include everything from multivitamins for children and arthritis and pain medication for the elderly, to antidepressants for Iraqis suffering from mental health illnesses. Freedom and Peace Trust a charitable organization working with the Marine Corps purchased the supplies with funds donated by U.S. corporations and collected by Direct Relief International.21

Deployment

SAN DIEGO Lance Cpl. Mario Reyes, of Chicago, says a final goodbye to his family on his cellular phone Jan. 14 before boarding the amphibious assault ship USS Boxer. The Boxer departed on a deployment to the Central Command area of responsibility in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom II. The Boxer will provide amphibious lift for a portion of the I Marine Expeditionary Force and 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing equipment and personnel from Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton, Calif., and Marine Corps Air Station Miramar, Calif.Photo by Petty Officer 3rd Class Mark J. Rebilas

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KUWAIT CITY, Kuwait Civilian contractors install new side paneling on a humvee from the 24th Marine Expeditionary Unit here July 17. The side paneling is part of the new up-armor being placed on MEU vehicles. The up-armor provides 360 degrees of protection for Marines in a vehicle by covering the gunner's turret, undercarriage and sides of the vehicle. The MEU was in Kuwait for training and final preparations before deployment to Iraq. The contractors from more than 25 countries work in two 12-hour shifts, seven days a week, in temperatures up to 120 degrees, to ensure the Marines vehicles are protected. More than 60 humvees and 7-ton trucks from the MEU were fitted with the new armor plates.Photo by Sgt. Zachary A. Bathon

Winter 2004

2004 in Review

AL ANBAR PROVINCE Staff Sgt. Keith A. Taylor cuts the hair of Gunnery Sgt. Ricardo Campos during a small sandstorm here March 12. Both Marines deployed Feb. 20 in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom II with Marine Wing Headquarters Squadron 3, 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing. Taylor is a Mira Mesa, Calif., native and Campos hails from Robstown, Texas.Photo by Sgt. J.L. Zimmer III

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CAMP TAQADDUM, Iraq Cpl. Chris A. Perry, an airframe mechanic with Marine Medium Helicopter Squadron 263 (Reinforced), carries a box to the appropriate bin inside the post office here Nov. 27. Perry, a 22-year-old Louisville, Ky., native, volunteered to help sort holiday mail at the post office. 1st Force Service Support Group delivers food, water, ammunition, fuel, medical supplies, and mail to other Marine forces in Iraq. Dozens of Marines at Camp Taqaddum volunteered to help the postal clerks sort through the increased volume of holiday mail. In October, the post office received nearly two million pounds of mail. In the first three weeks of November, they received more than two and a half million pounds. As Christmas approaches, the Marine postal clerks expect even more mail to arrive.Photo by Staff Sgt. Jim Goodwin

Year in ReviewON THIS DATE:

04:08

2004

CAMP TAQADDUM, Iraq Marines with 2nd Battalion, 10th Marine Regiment, an artillery battalion from Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune, N.C., mass around a cake here Nov. 10 following a ceremony honoring the Marine Corps 229th birthday. Marines gathered to celebrate this years birthday with a cake cutting ceremony, the reading of Gen. John A. Lejeunes birthday message, and the recognition of the youngest and oldest Marine present.Photo by Lance Cpl. Caleb W. Sparks

POLE-E CHARKHI, Afghanistan Retired Gunnery Sgt. R. Lee Ermey, host of the History Channels Mail Call series, visits Marines assigned to the Afghanistan National Army Training Detachment. The 14 Marines of the detachment deployed from various Training and Education Command billets throughout the United States, five months prior. They are assigned as embedded trainers to the Afghan National Army Quick Reaction Force Commando Battalion.23

Winter 2004

2004 in Review

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Family

MCB CAMP HANSEN, Okinawa, Japan Gunnery Sgt. Jake E. Schanz receives hugs and kisses from his children, Craig and Erika, in front of his office here Nov. 2. Schanz recently returned from a seven-month assignment in Baghdad, Iraq, and said he was glad to be home. He plans to attend the Warrior Transition program, which offers Marines and sailors information and guidance to help them transition from the combat zone back to garrison life. Schanz is the network operations chief for Communications Battalion, Marine Corps Base Camp Butler.Official Marine Corps photo

Year in ReviewON THIS DATE:

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2004

IRAQ Al-Qaida suspect Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, beheads American contractor Nicholas Berg. Al-Zarqawi said the execution avenges the abuses of Iraqi detainees at Abu Ghraib prison by U.S. forces.25

Family

MCB CAMP PENDLETON, Calif. Every four months, 14 Marines here are chosen for funeral duty. Seven serve as primaries, seven as alternates. Once a week, they practice the drill movements used in a funeral. The details of each ceremony are dictated by the families wishes and the situation. Part of the ceremony includes presenting American flags to the families. Marines carefully fold a flag and tuck three spent rounds into its folds to symbolize God, country and Corps before presenting the flag to the family. Most families who request a funeral detail request it because that Marine talked a lot about the phrase Once a Marine, always a Marine, said Staff Sgt. Ramiro M. Olmos, funeral detail staff noncommissioned officer in charge for Headquarters and Support Battalion, Marine Corps Base. (The ceremony) lets them know the Marine Corps is standing right there with them during a time of great need.Photo by Lance Cpl. Jeremy L. Gadrow

CAMP FOSTER, OKINAWA, Japan Cpl. Marques Farmer gets a taste of being seven months pregnant during Moms Basic Training and Daddys Baby Boot Camp at the Personal Services Center here June 4. Farmer is a safety advisor for Headquarters Company, Headquarters and Service Battalion, 3rd Force Service Support Group. Marine Corps Community Services offers the parenting preparation classes to help service members and dependents who are feeling the pressures of parenthood. The program is a comprehensive, daylong class that offers its students basic instruction on caring for a newborn child, said Lt. Cmdr. Joan Poochon, a registered nurse with the Pediatric Clinic, U.S. Naval Hospital. Photo by Lance Cpl. Martin R. Harriswww.marines.mil

ARLINGTON, Va. Lance Cpl. Kevin Rumley, who was wounded by an improvised explosive device in Iraq April 8, talks for a few moments with Brig. Gen. Robert B. Neller in a hallway of the Pentagon July 30. Rumley, from 3rd Battalion, 7th Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division, was among 40 service members visiting the Pentagon for a special guided tour. All were wounded in support of the war on terrorism and are being treated at Walter Reed Army Medical Center. Rumley, 19, is from Fairfax. Brig. Gen. Neller is the director of Operations Division, Plans, Policies and Operations for Headquarters Marine Corps. Photo by Staff Sgt. Cindy Fisher HAYMARKET, Va J.W. Alvey Elementary School first-graders assemble here to welcome Marines from the U.S. Marine Drum and Bugle Corps June 9. More than 700 students participated in the ceremony. The 80-strong corps of musicians played at the dedication of the new school in the northern Virginia town. The dedication was one of more than 400 events at which the Drum and Bugle Corps played this year. Designated The Commandants Own for their special status as musicians for the Commandant of the Marine Corps the band travels more than 50,000 miles each year for events in the United States and overseas.Photo by Lt. Col. Greg Reeder

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2004 in Review

MCB HAWAII Navy Lt. Aaron Sydney and his wife Courtney kiss upon his return here from a six-month deployment in support of Operations Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom Dec. 8. The couples 8-month-old son Austin is with them. Sydney was deployed with Patrol Squadron 9, providing support to Marines on the ground during the operations.Photo by Cpl. Michelle M. Dickson

MCB HAWAII Sgt. James Viator holds tight to his daughter Izabelle, 3, on his return from a seven-month deployment to Iraq in support of I Marine Expeditionary Force operations. Viator is one of 95 Marines and sailors with 3rd Radio Battalion, who returned home Sept. 23. 2nd Radio Bn., based at Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune, N.C., replaced 3rd Radio Bn. in Iraq.Photo by Cpl. Jessica M. Mills

Year in ReviewON THIS DATE:

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2004

LOS ANGELES Ronald Reagan, 93, dies at his home. Reagan, who was president from 1981-1989, suffered from Alzheimers disease since the mid-1990s. He is credited with leading a conservative revolution and hastening the end of the Cold War.27

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2004 in Review

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Training

MCRD PARRIS ISLAND, S.C. Recruits from D Company, 2nd Recruit Training Battalion, acquire and engage targets under low light and air-illuminated conditions at Hue City Range here Oct. 5. The night fire exercise, a mandatory graduation requirement, takes place on training day 50. Recruits fire 60 rounds of ammunition from the 50- and 100-yard lines during the course of fire.Photo by Lance Cpl. Brian Kester

Year in ReviewON THIS DATE:

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2004

IRAQ The United States officially hands over sovereignty to the Iraqi interim government two days early. Paul Bremer, the U.S. administrator of the Coalition Provisional Authority, passes legal documents to an Iraqi judge during a low-key ceremony in Baghdad.29

Training

MARINE CORPS TRAINING AREA BELLOWS, Hawaii Marines from A Company, 1st Battalion, 3rd Marine Regiment, prepare for their deployment with the 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit by training in amphibious assault vehicles here April 22. During the exercise, the Lava Dogs performed their jobs while the AAVs charged through rough waters. Being in the AAVs can (be) very claustrophobic because there are no windows inside, said Sgt. Victor ONeal, section leader for Combat Assault Company. The diesel fuel can (be nauseating), and the Marines need to be able to handle those situations to react and perform the way they need to when arriving on the beach. During amphibious operations, AAVs, which weigh 46,314 pounds unloaded, spearhead beach assaults. They carry infantry and supplies, with loads of up to 10,000 pounds, from ship to shore and provide forced entry into amphibious assault areas for the surface assault elements.Photo by Lance Cpl. Michelle M. Dickson

2004 in Review

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MCB CAMP PENDLETON, Calif. Marines exercise and shake their heads vigorously to test their M-40A1 field protective masks seals at the Camp Las Flores confidence chamber here Jan. 7. The annual gas chamber visit introduces Marines to CS gas. The gas, an irritant to the eyes and mucous membranes, is used during training to bolster confidence in the masks. Marines who fail to properly adjust their masks before entering the chamber learn a hard lesson. The Marines are with 3rd Assault Amphibian Battalion, 1st Marine Division. Elements of the battalion deployed to Iraq under the command of I Marine Expeditionary Force in early March for a seven-month tour.Photo by Lance Cpl. Samuel Bard Valliere

Winter 2004

MARINE BARRACKS WASHINTON Cpl. Bradley Dahlberg, a body bearer with B Company and Cpl. Eric Jahnke, former member of the Silent Drill Platoon, demonstrate blocks with weapons of opportunity during the Marine Corps Martial Arts Program Green Belt Instructor Course here Nov. 26. The threeweek, 135-hour course upgraded the Marines most important weapons system themselves. MCMAP , which began in the fall of 2000, has five basic levels of training denoted by tan, gray, green, brown and black belts. Black belts, the most senior belts, are further divided into six degrees. For each degree, a Marine earns a red stripe. Photo by Gunnery Sgt. Kent Flora

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MCAS CHERRY POINT, N.C. Sgt. Jonathan T. Spauldingmonitors the radar screen to ensure an inbound KC-130J lands safely. The San Antonio native is one of 14 air traffic controllers to graduate Aug. 27 from the three-week terminal instrumental procedures course taught by the Transportation Safety Institute here. The course teaches air traffic controllers how to establish detailed flight procedures regarding the minimum speed, altitude and angle of approach an aircraft must maintain to make a safe landing. Offering the course here allows Marine Corps Air Bases East to train more Marines in less time without paying the travel expenses of sending them to an eight-week course at Keesler Air Force Base, Biloxi, Miss.Photo by Lance Cpl. Wil Acosta

ALBANIA The Marines of G Battery return to their bivouac site after conducting a live fire exercise here in March. The battery, an artillery unit, is attached to Battalion Landing Team 1st Bn., 6th Marine Regiment, and is the ground combat element of the 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit (Special Operations Capable). The MEU was in Albania for an amphibious landing exercise March 8-12 practicing day and night live fire exercises, patrols, and convoy operations. The unit deployed from Camp Lejeune, N.C., in mid-February as part of Expeditionary Strike Group 2.Photo by Cpl. Jemssy Alvarez

Year in ReviewON THIS DATE:

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2004

IRAQ The United States hands over legal custody of Iraqi former President Saddam Hussein to the new Iraqi interim government. He will physically remain in U.S. custody until the Iraqi police provide a secure facility. It is expected that he will be prosecuted on 12 charges, including war crimes and crimes against humanity.31

TrainingCENTRAL TRAINING AREA, Okinawa, Japan Lance Cpl. Benjamin C. Foged and Cpl. Justin L. Clevenger stand back to back providing front and rear security during basic room entry and clearing training at the combat town here April 8. They are part of the Provost Marshals Special Reaction Team, Headquarters and Service Battalion, Marine Corps Base Camp Butler. SRT is the Marine Corps version of SWAT, said Staff Sgt. Steven Rowe the teams commander. Military policemen selected for the team attend SRT School at Fort Leonard Wood, Mo. The two-week course focuses on tactics, marksmanship and special threat situations, like responding to terrorist incidents.Photo by Cpl. Ryan Walker

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2004 in Review

ZAMBOANGA, Philippines Heavy equipment operator Pfc. Christopher J. Waldon prepares for a simulated emergency reaction drill at the military command liaison element here Sept. 18. Marines with Headquarters Battery, 12th Marine Regiment, 3rd Marine Division, arrived here Sept. 15 to relieve fellow headquarters battery Marines in support of Joint Special Operation Task Force Philippines. The Marines are providing force protection for the military command structure and security for convoy operations and incoming military aircraft. Waldon is with the new Marine security element here. Photo by Cpl. Trevor M. Carlee MCAS CHERRY POINT, N.C. Marines conduct hot reload training here May 19. Refuelers from Marine Wing Support Squadron 271 refueled an AH-1W Super Cobra helicopter after ordnance Marines rendered it safe at Landing Zone Bluebird. Within 15 minutes, the aircraft was refueled, reloaded, rearmed, back in the air, and poised to accomplish its mission. Super Cobras are armed with one 20 mm turreted cannon holding 750 rounds; four external wing stations that can fire rockets; and a wide variety of precision guided missiles, including point target and antiarmor tube-launched, optically-tracked, wireguided missiles, antiarmor Sidewinder missiles and antiradar Sidearm missiles.Photo by Lance Cpl. Rocco DeFilippis

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MCB QUANTICO, Va. U.S. and Dutch Marines practiceinsertion and extraction drills in the snow at Landing Zone Albatross here Feb. 12. The drills were part of a bilateral-exchange training package between Dutch Royal Marines from Curacao, Netherlands Antilles, and a platoon of reserve Marines from K Company, 3rd Battalion, 25th Marine Regiment, Moundsville, W.Va. The exchange fosters better working relationships and understanding between the two countries Marines. The best part about training with the Royal Marines was meeting them and experiencing a bit of their culture, said Chief Warrant Officer 2 Robert M. Kuhn, operations officer for 3rd Bn.Photo by Mark Turney

MANDA BAY NAVAL BASE, Kenya Marines board traditional fishing vessels, known as dhows, here Jan. 6 for the trip to Lamu, an island town where Marines will work to refurbish a local boys school. The Marines and sailors, with 13th Marine Expeditionary Unit (Special Operations Capable), arrived here Jan. 5 for Exercise Edged Mallet-04, a bilateral training and humanitarian assistance exercise conducted annually with Kenyan Department of Defense forces. More than 250 MEU personnel participated in numerous training events and community relations projects throughout the coastal regions of Kenya. The exercise was designed to strengthen the longstanding military-to-military relationship that exists between the United States and Kenya.Photo by Sgt. Adrian R. Pascual

Year in ReviewON THIS DATE:

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2004

NEW YORK The city celebrates construction of the Freedom Tower where the World Trade Center once stood. The new buildings planned 1,776-foot height will make it one of the tallest in the world. It is scheduled to be completed in 2009.33

Training2004 in Review

MCAS MIRIMAR, Calif. A Marine with full combat gear swims laps at the combat water survival training facility here during the eight-day Combat Water Safety Swimmers course in April. To qualify for the course, Marines must complete a 500-meter swim in less than 13 minutes; a 50-meter lifesaving swim with a 10-pound brick; and a 25-meter underwater swim to retrieve a 10-pound weight from the bottom of the pool. Of the 22 hopefuls who tried out in April, six met the requirements and only three graduated. Marines were evaluated on lifesaving rescues, the proper execution of strokes and aquatic confidence skills. To graduate, Marines must swim 500 meters in less than 11 minutes and pass all written exams. After completing this course, students should be able to handle themselves in any aquatic situation, said Sgt. Ryan N. Maus, primary CWSS instructor and San Diego native.Photo by Lance Cpl. Skye Jones

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YECHON AIR FORCE BASE, Republic of Korea A Marine aims aM-2 .50 caliber machine gun at a gate as a Korean reaction squad prepares to rush during combined reaction team training here March 23. Marines with Marine Wing Support Squadron 171 and troops with the Republic of Korea Air Force 16th Fighter Wing engaged in air base ground defense exercises during Exercise Foal Eagle March 23-25. The exercises trained Marines to provide effective rear security in a forward operating environment and prepared them to operate in a combat environment with Korean allies, said 1st Lt. Mark R. Budzyn, Base Defense Operations Center officer in charge.Photo by Lance Cpl. David Revere

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FORT A.P . HILL, Va. A Marine with MEU Service Support Group 24, 24th Marine Expeditionary Unit, climbs across wooden logs on a confidence course here March 15. The course challenged Marines with log-based obstacles, many more than 30 feet high. The obstacles tested balance, coordination and upper body strength and increased Marines proficiency at maneuvering through rough terrain area. The training is part of the MEUs predeployment workups.Photo by Lance Cpl. Sarah A. Beavers

Year in ReviewON THIS DATE:

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2004

MCAS NEW RIVER, N.C. Marines rush into a building to bring down a sniper as part of Military Operations in Urban Terrain training held at the combat town here March 20. The Marines are with Motor Transport Division, Marine Wing Support Squadron 272. This urban setting is ideal because during combat Marines may be assigned missions to secure buildings or homes, and they need to know the proper procedures to do so, said 1st Lt. Shawn H. Daley, division commander. Explosive Ordnance Disposal Marines planted six dummy unexploded devices, resembling grenades, mines and bombs, in the area around the training site to simulate unexpected dangerous conditions.Photo by Lance Cpl. Zachary R. Frank

CAMP LOUMIA, Chad The Chad Army antiterrorist battalion graduated from an eight-week training syllabus conducted by Marines of the Pan Sahel Initiative Mobile Training Team. The 25 Marines based here are from U.S. Marine Corps Forces Europe and Atlantic and II Marine Expeditionary Force. The Pan Sahel Initiative is designed to improve military training in Chad, Mali, Mauritania, and Niger.35

Training

MCB CAMP LEJEUNE, N.C. Marines from 2nd Air Naval Gunfire Liaison Company, II Marine Expeditionary Force, fast rope out of a MV-22 Osprey tilt-rotor aircraft here Nov. 5. ANGLICO Marines, with help from Special Operations Training Group instructors, focused on testing the Ospreys capabilities. (The Osprey) is a fairly new aircraft. Our job is to certify it as safe, said Gunnery Sgt. Jim M. Boutin, SOTG instructor and Haverhill, Mass., native. The Osprey can fly at a maximum altitude of 26,000 feet, about 15,000 feet higher than a helicopter. This innovative aircraft can also fly nearly twice as fast and three times farther than a helicopter and needs less runway length than a traditional airplane less than 500 feet.Photo by Cpl. Lana D. Waters

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TUNGPONG BAY, Thailand Insects found inthe jungle are cooked and placed in bamboo shoots for a 24-hour jungle survival training class here May 14-15 during exercise Cobra Gold 2004. Marines learned which jungle plants, fruits and insects are edible in the Thai jungle, sampling some of the insects themselves. They also learned to kill, skin and cook a cobra during the class taught by Thai reconnaissance Marines. I have never been here before and this is my first deployment, said Pfc. Christopher M. Garcia, 3rd Reconnaissance Battalion, 3rd Marine Division. Its good to work with the Thai Marines and learn the different things that they have to show us.Photo by Lance Cpl. Rose A. Muth

2004 in Review

CAMP HANSEN, OKINAWA, Japan A Kevlar blanket shields Marinesin stack formation from the blast of an explosive charge during the 10-day Dynamic Entry Basic Course here June 2. The blast blew a man-sized hole into a wall. With these advanced breaching skills Marines can enter secure buildings and recover cargo or information. We want the maximum amount of penetration with the least amount of collateral damage, said Gunnery Sgt. John R. Gouley Jr., senior dynamic entry instructor, III Marine Expeditionary Force Special Operations Training Group.Photo by Cpl. Ryan Walker

Winter 2004 36

MCAS IWAKUNI, Japan Air traffic control Marines at the tower here monitor the runway and communicate with Marines in the radar bunker and pilots in the air Aug. 15. Tower personnel direct the flow of air traffic below 3,000 feet and within five miles of the station. They handle an average of 200 operations a day, working with Marine Corps, Navy, Air Force and Japanese military aircraft, said Sgt. Andrew J. Dykes, tower supervisor.Photo by Lance Cpl. Ruben D. Calderon

Year in ReviewON THIS DATE:

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2004

AN NAJAF, Iraq Marines from the 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit (Special Operations Capable) receive small arms, rocket propelled grenade and mortar fire while driving past the An Najaf Maternity Hospital during a security patrol in the city. Marines returned fire, taking caution to avoid all noncombatants. It is estimated that two insurgent fighters were killed during the engagement.37

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People

CAMP TAQADDUM, Iraq Secretary of the Navy Gordon R. England joins Marines in a war cry during a visit here Nov. 27. England traveled throughout Iraq, visiting I Marine Expeditionary Force Marines and sailors during the three-day Thanksgiving trip. He commended Marines on their performance during recent operations in Fallujah and said there is more work to be done to win the Global War on Terrorism. He also awarded several Purple Heart medals to 1st Force Service Support Group Marines. Youre the heroes here. You just dont know it yet, Gordon said.Photo by Staff Sgt. Jim Goodwin

Year in ReviewON THIS DATE:

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2004

AL ANBAR PROVINCE, Iraq Marines and U.S.Embassy representatives meet with local Iraqi leaders from the western Al Anbar Province to discuss upcoming elections. The daylong meeting mapped the process by which the Iraqis will eventually draft a constitution. The role of the Marines and U.S. Embassys representatives is strictly advisory, said Maj. James R. Kendall, a 35-year-old from Nashua, N.H. This will be the first of several meetings about the countrys political future until the elections, scheduled for January 2005.39

People

WASHINGTON Commandant of the Marine Corps Gen. Michael W. Hagee renders honors as President Reagans flag-draped casket is moved to a horse-drawn caisson by a joint honor guard during the funeral procession from the White House to the U.S. Capitol Rotunda here June 9. Following a service June 11 at the National Cathedral, Reagan was flown back to California for a sunset burial in a private ceremony. Reagan served as the 40th commander-in-chief from 1981-1989. He died June 5 at 93 from complications of Alzheimers disease. Of the Marines, Reagan once said, Some people spend an entire lifetime wondering if theyve made a difference. The Marines dont have that problem.Photo by Air Force Master Sgt. Jim Varhegyi

FORWARD OPERATING BASE RIPLEY, Afghanistan Cpls. Dale Metcalf, Portland, Maine,www.marines.miland Matthew Lara, of Kissimmee, Fla., rest during a pause in a security patrol in the Oruzgan Province. The two anti-tank assault men are assigned to Weapons Platoon, Battalion Landing Team 1st Battalion, 6th Marine Regiment, the ground combat element of the 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit (Special Operations Capable).Photo by Cpl. Robert A. Sturkie

2004 in Review

MCB CAMP LEJUENE, N.C. Lance Cpl. John W. Inman arrives at Landing Zone Gull here shortly after making an amphibious landing at Onslow Beach Nov. 18. A radio operator with E Company, Battalion Landing Team 2nd Battalion, 8th Marine Regiment, his first landing was exactly the kind of experience he had hoped the Marine Corps would provide, he said. After Sept. 11, 2001, the college sophomore put aside his studies and his managerial job to join the Corps. I guess I was just one of those guys who didnt want to stand back and do nothing, said the 24-year-old wireman from Oklahoma City. I did not want to look back when I was old knowing that I did not do my part.Photo by Gunnery Sgt. Mark E. Bradley

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MCRD PARRIS ISLAND, S.C. Pvt. Juan C. Guerrero stands next to his brother, Cpl. Meguel Guerrero, at the Iwo Jima monument here after Juans graduation from recruit training Nov. 24. Meguel, who joined the Marine Corps two years earlier as a result of Juans success in the Colombian Marines, welcomed his brother with open arms. After his stint in the Colombian military, Juan came to New York to be with his mother and two brothers. I kind of pushed (Meguel) to join the Marine Corps, Juan said. He is doing very well, so I decided that I was going to do the same thing. Photo by Cpl. Brian Kester

Year in ReviewON THIS DATE:

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2004

CAMP FALLUJAH, Iraq Nine Marines from I Marine Expeditionary Force receive combat meritorious promotions from Lt. Gen. John F. Sattler. Marines recommended for a combat meritorious promotion must have demonstrated outstanding leadership to a degree rarely attained by Marines of equal grade, according to Marine Corps Order P1400.32C.41

People

FORT PIERCE, Fla. Pfc. Jesus Vega holds out a picture of himself at 305 pounds his weight just prior to expressing his interest in joining the Corps. The twenty-one-year old, Stuart, Fla., native shed 96 pounds in eight months so he could join the Marine Delayed Entry Program and eventually become a Marine. The 5-foot, 11-inch Marine now weighs 188 pounds. I want to make a difference in someone thats heavy and tell them that life isnt about sitting around and having things handed to you, you have to get up and make those changes on your own, Vega said.Photo by Sgt. David Salazar

IRAQ After receiving the Purple Heart during a ceremony April 24, Lance Cpl. Jeffery A. Scott, 20, holds up the armored plate insert that likely saved his life. The insert stopped a piece of shrapnel that hit him in the back during an attack April 5. Scott was one of 12 Marines and a sailor to receive the medal during the ceremony. Most received their wounds during the opening days of Operation Vigilant Resolve, launched April 4 to bring order to Fallujah. All of the recipients are assigned to Combat Service Support Battalion 1, which provides logistical support to Marines operating in and around Fallujah. Scott is a combat engineer and a native of Ogdensburg, N.Y. CSSB-1 is part of 1st Force Service Support Group, which is based at Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton, Calif.Photo by Staff Sgt. Bill Lisbon

Winter 2004

2004 in Review

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CAMP FALLUJAH, Iraq 1st Lt. Jennifer J. Ryu,with 9th Communications Battalion, 1st Marine Expeditionary Force Headquarters Group, and her twin 2nd Lt. Jessica J. Ryu, with 2nd Radio Battalion, 2nd MEF Headquarters Group, reunited here Oct. 14, for the first time since deploying in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. The 24-year-old natives of WinstonSalem, N.C., attended Officer Candidates School in Quantico, Va., during the summer of 2001. At home, 2,742 miles separate the Ryu sisters Jennifer is stationed at Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton, Calif., and Jessica at MCB Camp Lejeune, N.C. But in Iraq, they are only minutes apart. It is funny how we are closer, now that we are deployed, said Jessica.Photo by Lance Cpl. Miguel A. Carrasco Jr.

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MCRD SAN DIEGO Jeremy and Jeremiah Pimental, 18-year-old Springfield, Ore., natives, are paternal twins who say they have done everything together even joining the Marine Corps. They enlisted in the buddy program so they would have a better chance of staying together during recruit training and wound up in the same platoon. They graduated Oct. 15.Photo by Lance Cpl. Jess Levens

MCB CAMP PENDLETON, Calif. Pvt. Joseph Cuen dabs the finishing touches of black to his chin during combat training here Oct. 29. Cuen is with 1st Platoon, I Company, Marine Combat Training Battalion. Upon graduating Year in Review 09:26 recruit training, Marines ON THIS DATE: 2004 attend combat training at the School of Infantry for 22 days. There they learn combat skills, STUART, Fla. Hurricane Jeanne makes landfall near field tactics and midnight. It is the fourth hurricane to hit the state weapons systems.Photo by Lance Cpl. Jess Levens

this year. Hurricane Charlie hit Aug. 13; Hurricane Frances made landfall at about the same spot as Jeanne on Sept. 5; and Hurricane Ivan crossed Florida Sept. 16. Texas was the last state affected by four hurricanes in one season in 1886. An estimated one in five homes in Florida were damaged by hurricanes during August and September 2004 and 117 people lost their lives in the state from the storms.43

People

MCRD SAN DIEGO Cpl. Yuri Schneider, a combat illustrator with the Combat Visual Information Center here, demonstrates his artistic vision in this half self-portrait Dec. 3. Unlike most jobs in the Corps, a combat illustrator must already be proficient at his craft before enlisting. Schneider submitted a portfolio of his art when he was 23 and was accepted to enlist as a combat illustrator. I cant imagine doing any other job in the Corps, said the 27-year-old Pittsburgh native. Ive learned so much here. Now Im more disciplined, and Im a better artist.Photo by Cpl. Jess Levens

2004 in Review

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Winter 2004

CAMP MAHMUDIYAH, Iraq Lance Cpl. Louis A. Lasso-Hurtado, 23, and his younger brother, Lance Cpl. Andres F. Lasso-Hurtado, 21, both from Colombia, say being stationed together makes serving in a combat zone less stressful. Assigned to Weapons Company, 2nd Battalion, 2nd Marine Regiment, the two rely on each other for support. One of our cousins was killed in the attacks on 9/11, said Louis. That, combined with our dad wanting us out on our own, made (joining the Marine Corps) the best decision.Their cousin Lance Cpl. Jamie Hurtado-Correa, a New York native and rifleman with G Co., is in the same battalion.Photo by Cpl. Shawn C. Rhodes

MCRD PARRIS ISLAND, N.C. Senior Drill Instructor Staff Sgt. Louis Starnes, instructs recruits on proper uniform wear in the squad bay March 24. The 6-foot-9 Atlanta native, with Platoon 3040, I Company, 3rd Recruit Training Battalion, has to duck his head every time he walks through a doorway. Many of his recruits say they were scared when they first saw him duck his head out of the drill instructor hut, Starnes said.Photo by Lance Cpl. Darhonda V. Hall

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AL ASAD, Iraq Cpl. Fabian Estrada pins first lieutenant bars to his sisters collar during her promotion ceremony here May 24. 1st Lt. Catalina Kesler, 27, is the executive officer of Alpha Surgical Company, 1st Force Service Support Group. Estrada, 21, is a personnel clerk with Marine Medium Helicopter Squadron 161, Marine Aircraft Group 16, 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing.Photo by Lance Cpl. Matthew T. Rainey

MCRD SAN DIEGO Staff Sgt. Kevin L. Zetina, senior drill instructor for Platoon 2085 here, bellows cadence while practicing for G Companys final drill competition Aug. 13. Since his youth in Belize, in Central America, Zetina wanted to be in the military. He moved to south central Los Angeles when he was 15 and attended John C. Freemont High School. After graduation, he began looking at the different armed services for the one that best suited him. When he saw a Marine recruiter, he found his service, Zetina said. I loved the fact that the Marine recruiter did not smother me with promises. He promised me one thing. He said, It is going to be hard. It was exactly what I wanted to hear.Photo by Cpl. Shawn M. Toussaint

Year in ReviewON THIS DATE:

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2004

AFGHANISTAN About 40 Marine Wing Support Squadron 473 Marines deploy to Afghanistan to replace MWSS-471. The Gargoyles of MWSS-473 are comprised of MWSS-473 elements from Miramar, Calif., A Detachment from Fresno, Calif., and B Detachment from Fort Worth, Texas. They are here to support Operation Enduring Freedom for a seven-month tour at Bagram Air Bases Camp Teufelhunden, and Forward Operating Base camps Salerno and Orgun-E.45

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FALLUJAH, Iraq As a combat engineer, Cpl. Michael R. Emans is responsible for breaching doors, clearing barricades, and opening passageways for the infantrymen in his team. Explosives are the fastest means of punching through the obstacles, but combat engineers also use an array of mechanical devices such as sledgehammers, bolt-cutters and crowbar-like tools, called hooligan tools. I used to like blowing up ordnance in training. I like it a lot better out here, running up to a door under fire, throwing a stick of C-4 on the door, yelling smoke then waiting for the explosion. You get to be so much closer (than in training) and you can feel the explosion. Destruction is very gratifying, said the native of Bowling Green, Ohio. Emans, 22, is with 3rd Platoon, A Company, 1st Battalion, 8th Marine Regiment.Photo by Cpl. Randy L. Bernard

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2004 in Review

CAMP FALLUJAH, Iraq Sgt. Aaron A. Smith, Cpl. Brian C. Bowers, Pvt. Phillip B. Cowan, and Lance Cpl. William J. Horton are members of Small Craft Company, from Camp Lejeune, N.C. All but Cowan are boat captains in charge of Riverine Assault Crafts. A boat captain is in charge of everything that happens on his boat, said Horton, a 24-year-old native of Knoxville, Tenn. Its not unusual for junior Marines to shoulder such responsibility. Being a boat captain is like being a fire team leader in an infantry company, said Smith, from Kerrville, Texas. Cowan, a coxswain from Ruckersville, Va., has been with the company for less than two years. He hopes to be given the opportunity to be a boat captain in the future, he said.Photo by Cpl. Paula M. Fitzgerald

Winter 2004

MCRD SAN DIEGO Pvt. Jeff Mahaffey, center, talked his older brother Jacob, right, into joining the Marine Corps with him. Jeff, 18, enlisted in December 2003, with only high school graduation and a summer between him and the Corps. Jacob, 21, enlisted several months later, and the brothers shipped out on the buddy program. The younger Mahaffey said having his big brother in boot camp is great. The Marines, from Kewanee, Ill., were in Platoon 1009 and graduated recruit training Nov. 5.Photo by Lance Cpl. Jess Levens

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CAMP TAQADDUM, Iraq As vehicle operators delivering supplies to Marines here, Cpls. Matthew P . Meier and Curtis J. Cichocki have been through three convoy ambushes together as of May 24. A Company, Combat Service Support Group 15s drivers have logged more than 275,000 miles since arriving in Iraq earlier this year. CSSG-15 is a part of 1st Force Service Support Group. Meier is a 23-year-old native of Munith, Mich. Cichocki is a 22-year-old native of Westland, Mich.Photo by Staff Sgt. Bill Lisbon

Year in ReviewON THIS DATE:

11:02

2004

ZODAN, Iraq Sgt. Phil F. Mick McCotter, a sniper with ScoutSniper Platoon, 2nd Battalion, 2nd Marine Regiment, uses copper wire to extend the range of his teams radio. Ingenuity is part of accomplishing missions for the 24-year-old Black Rock, Ireland, native. The scout-snipers provided security while combat engineers uncovered weapons cache sites around an area known as Hill 55 , a former hotbed of terrorist activity. Our job is to basically make sure no one tries to sneak up on them or plant a bomb in the area while theyre gone, McCotter said.Photo by Cpl. Shawn C. Rhodes

WASHINGTON President Bush is re-elected president of the United States. He is the first president since his father in 1988 to be elected with a majority of all votes cast. He won 31 states, 286 electoral votes and 51 percent of the popular vote.47

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2004 in Review

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BAKERSFIELD, Calif. R. Lee Ermey serves as host during the 10-kilometer Volkslauf: The Ultimate Challenge here Oct. 16. The peoples run raised about $15,000 for Toys For Tots and other charities. Ermey, the host of the television show Mail Call on the History Channel, is best known for his taciturn portrayal of drill instructor Gunnery Sgt. Hartman in Stanley Kubricks Full Metal Jacket. He resurrected that role during the race by providing drill instructor-style encouragement. Participants trudged through five million gallons of water, mud and more than 50 obstacles, including hurdles, berms, tunnels, pits, ladders, swings and ropes.Photo by Staff Sgt. Sergio Jimenez

Year in ReviewON THIS DATE:

11:15

2004

FALLUJAH, Iraq Marines with 3rd Battalion, 5th Marine Regiment, reopen a Fallujah bridge for the first time since the bodies of two U.S. civilian contractors were hung from its rafters. The civilians along with two other contractors were captured by Iraqi insurgents, mutilated and dragged through the city March 31.49

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CAMP AL ASAD, Iraq Cpl. Bryant Lewis and Lance Cpl. Adrian R. Navarro tangle during a boxing match held here June 11. Nearly 500 Marines showed up for the camps first Friday Night Fights. Marines and sailors watched 28 amateur boxers compete in 14 bouts inside the ring donated by Marine Aircraft Group 16. Navarro, from National City, Calif., is a mechanic with Combat Service Support Battalion 7 and Lewis, from Knoxville, Tenn., is a machine gunner with 3rd Battalion, 24th Marine Regiment. 1st Sgt. David P . Perry, first sergeant for L Company, 3rd Bn., 24th Marines, came up with the idea for formalized matches when he discovered some of his Marines sparring on concrete floors. Perry is a former golden gloves boxer from Maryville, Tenn.Photo by Sgt. Jose L. Garcia

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OKUMA JOINT SERVICE RECREATION AREA, Okinawa, Japan A Marine jumps off a bananaboat during the Single Marine Program camping trip here May 14-16. More than 90 Marines from Camp Kinser attended the trip. Although the retreat offered swimming, snorkeling and other activities, some Marines preferred savoring the views. No matter what Marines decided to do during the trip, it fulfilled the organizers intent of getting Marines away from the bases and allowing them to see what Okinawa has to offer, said Cpl. Nanette Lugo, Camp Kinser SMP representative.Photo by Lance Cpl. Jonathan K. Teslevich

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MCB HAWAII Savannah Orey, and her friend Anthony Bonomolo, both 5, cover their ears while sitting on their fathers shoulders during the Blue Angels performance at the Blues on the Bay Air Show here Oct. 9. Savannahs father, Bret Orey, is a sailor with Marine Aviation Logistics Squadron 24. Anthonys father, P .J. Bonomolo, is a veteran Marine. Aerial acrobatics, demonstrations and flyovers by military aircraft from the Marine Corps, Navy, Air Force, and Coast Guard entertained more than 100,000 spectators at the show from Oct. 8-13.Photo by Cpl. Jessica M. Mills

ATLANTA Lance Cpl. Jose Diaz and Cpl. Jose Irizarry enjoy one of many rides at Six Flags over Georgias official Marine Day June 29. The park, which plans to hold a daylong event honoring each service, was open to active duty Marines, reserve Marines and their families. Six Flags over Georgia paid tribute to the Corps by displaying Marine Corps vehicles and weapons and featuring a pull-up competition. This was a good opportunity for Marines to get away from day-to-day work and relax, said Sgt. Dexter White, Single Marine Program vice president at Marine Corps Logistics Base Albany. It was also a good opportunity for Marines to see what Georgia has to offer them.Photo by Cpl. Andrew P. Roufs

Year in ReviewON THIS DATE:

12:07

2004

CAMP PENDLETON, Calif. President Bush speaks with the Marines and families of I Marine Expeditionary Force. He praised the Marines for serving with valor and integrity in the War on Terror, from the caves and mountains of Afghanistan to the deserts and cities of Iraq. He also thanked families for enduring long separations caused by military deployments, and reminded them that in carrying out these burdens, you also serve your country and America is grateful for your service.51

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GOODFELLOW AIR FORCE BASE, Texas Capt. Tom Hodge, commanding officer of the Marine Corps detachment here, enlists Smedley Fidelis, a 2-year-old English bulldog, into the Marine Corps with the help of Master Gunnery Sgt. Rickie Jones and Lance Cpl. Mary Goodwin July 1. Fidelis was adopted from the Dallas-Fort Worth bulldog rescue and assigned as the detachments mascot. The detachment is comprised of about 282 Marines, of which 232 are students attending Crash Fire and Rescue, Signals Intelligence or Imagery Analysis Apprentice school. The remaining 50 Marines are instructors and administrative staff. Fidelis will be eligible for promotion to lance corporal in 180 days, pending good behavior.Photo by Staff Sgt. Rory Pettway

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OAHU, Hawaii Lance Cpl. Jorge R. Jimenez rides a wave to Sandy Beach on a body board here Aug. 13. The network technician was one of four single Marines and a corpsman from Marine Corps Recruit Depot San Diego to participate in the Single Marine Program trip to Oahu. A group of 55 Marines, three sailors and six civilians from the Marine Corps West Coast installations flew in a C-130 from Marine Corps Air Station Miramar, Calif., for the getaway. Activities here included surfing and snorkeling at Sandy Beach and Hanauma Bay, watching fire dances at a luau and touring the USS Arizona Memorial and Pearl Harbor.Photo by Lance Cpl. Edward R. Guevara Jr.

HOLLYWOOD, Calif. Sgt. Christopher Morrow concentrates on his answers during the quick cash portion of the Family Feud television game show here Jan. 31. During this portion, accumulating 200 points earns a team $20,000. The Marines won and the $20,000 prize was split between those who played this portion. Six Marines from Marine Corps Air Station Miramar competed with other service teams during the six episodes of the all-military shows, which aired in early May. The whole experience of being on the Family Feud has been awesome, said Morrow, a Canton, Ohio, native, who was promoted to staff sergeant Feb. 1. We had a good team and went 3-0 on the show and went home with some money, so were all very happy about that. Morrow, an intelligence chief with Marine Heavy Helicopter Squadron 462, Marine Aircraft Group 16, was one of the first selected for the Marine team.Photo by Staff Sgt. Chad McMeen\

Year in ReviewON THIS DATE:

12:26

2004

SOUTHEAST ASIA The fourth largest earthquake since 1900, with a magnitude of 9.0, struck off the west coast of Sumatra, Indonesia, and resulted in tsunamis that killed hundreds of thousands throughout Asia. As the year draws to a close, stories of loss and survival abound. Governments and people around the world pledge support to the devastated region.53

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LibertyNEW YORK Lt. Gen. Robert Magnus throws the firstpitch for the New York Mets Military Appreciation Day at Shea Stadium May 23. Magnus is the deputy commandant for Programs and Resources at Headquarters Marine Corps. The Mets adopted 2nd Battalion, 2nd Marine Regiment, which is based at Camp Lejeune, N.C., but deployed to Iraq. Fans donated care supplies at each gate, which the Mets then sent to 2/2. New York Marine Corps League members also collected money at each gate for care supplies to send to Iraq.Photo by Cpl. Beth Zimmerman

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BIG BEAR, Calif. Four Big Bear patrons take a quiet ride up the mountain on the express lift during the Single Marine Programs ski and snowboarding trip to Big Bear Mountain Resorts Jan. 16-18. A dozen Marines from Marine Corps Recruit Depot San Diego enjoyed the same ride. Britney OConnor, the depots SMP coordinator, made the trip possible for depot Marines, who joined Marines, family members and friends from Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton and Marine Corps Air Station Yuma, Ariz. The excursion included a one-day lift pass, rental equipment, and a two-hour lesson the falls and fun were free. It was a good weekend, said Sgt. Joel M. Castillo, depot traffic management office. There was a lot of camaraderie while we were up there.Photo by Sgt. Ethan E. Rocke

OKINAWA, Japan Lance Cpl. Ricardo Baez crawls through the opening of a cave during the Marine Corps Community Services battle sites tour here April 29. Baez is a company clerk with B Company, Headquarters and Service Battalion, Marine Corps Base Camp Butler. The cave was one of four stops along the tour. This year marks the 59th anniversary of the World War II battle for Okinawa, which began Easter Sunday, April 1, 1945 and ended with an American victory June 21, 1945. Three Marine divisions, the 1st, 2nd and 6th, with support from five Army divisions and naval forces fought in the battle against the Japanese. It was the largest amphibious assault during the Pacific campaign and the only battle not survived by either commander, said tour guide Dave Davenport.Photo by Cpl. Ryan Walker

Year in ReviewON THIS DATE:

12:29

2004

WASHINGTON Three Marine Corps disaster relief assessment teams begin arriving in Thailand, Sri Lanka and Indonesia. U.S. Pacific Command has marshaled assets ranging from carrier strike groups and water purification ships to provide emergency support for victims following the Dec. 26 earthquake and subsequent tsunamis, said Lt. Gen. James Conway, director of operations for the joint staff, during a special State Department briefing.55

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MARINE CORPS WAR MEMORIAL, Arlington, Va. Capt. Mary Kate Bailey receives the first place medal from Col. Tom Bright, chief of staff Marine Corps Base Quantico, after her victory in the womens division of the Marine Corps Marathon here Oct 31. Bailey, from Long Island, N.Y., and currently stationed at Quantico, finished with a time of 2:48:31 during the 29th annual Marine Corps Marathon. She is the first Marine to win the marathons womens division since 1st Lt. Joanna Martin in 1979. Bailey, whose three brothers all Marine officers were on hand to offer support during and after the race, said the memory of her father, also a Marine and Vietnam War veteran, helped keep her motivated throughout the 26-mile journey.Photo by Lance Cpl. Christopher Roberts

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MANILA INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT, Philippines Marine landing support specialist Lance Cpl. Jesse M. Ford grabs a box of bottled water to load onto a CH-46E helicopter here Dec. 10. 3rd Marine Expeditionary Brigade Marines and sailors with the Joint Task Force 535 are providing immediate lifesaving support to flood-devastated areas of the Philippines. Successive tropical storms killed more than 650 Filipinos, left more than 400 missing and displaced at least 168,000 local residents in the past week. The Marines and sailors of 3rd MEB are based in Okinawa, Japan and the unit is the Corps only permanently forward-deployed brigade-sized Marine Air Ground Task Force.Photo by Lance Cpl. Joel Abshier

SemperFidelis