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This Month In USMC History
1 October 1997:
The first African-American female colonel in the Marine Corps was promoted to that rank during a ceremony at MCAS Cherry Point, North Carolina. Colonel Gilda A. Jackson, a native of Columbus, Ohio, made Marine Corps history when she achieved the rank of colonel. She was serving as Special Projects Officer, 2d Marine Aircraft Wing at the time of her promotion.

5 October 1775:
Meeting in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, the 2d Continental Congress used the word "Marines" on one of the earliest known occasions, when it directed General George Washington to secure two vessels on "Continental risque and pay", and to give orders for the "proper encouragement to the Marines and seamen" to serve on the two armed ships.

6 October 1945:
Major General Keller E. Rockey, Commanding General, III Amphibious Corps, accepted the surrender of 50,000 Japanese troops in North China on behalf of the Chinese Nationalist government.

8 October 1889:
A force of 375 Marines under command of future Commandant George F. Elliott, attacked and captured the insurgent town of Novaleta, Luzon, Philippine Islands, and linked up with U.S. Army troops. There were 11 Marine casualties.

9 October 1917:
The 8th Marines was activated at Quantico, Virginia. Although the regiment would not see combat in Europe during World War I, the officers and enlisted men of the 8th Marines participated in operations against dissidents in Haiti for over five years during the 1920s. During World War II, the regiment was assigned to the 2d Marine Division and participated in combat operations on Guadalcanal, Tarawa, Saipan, Tinian, and Okinawa, and earned three Presidential Unit Citations.

11 October 1951:
A Marine battalion was flown by transport helicopters to a frontline combat position for the first time, when HMR-161 lifted the 3d Battalion, 7th Marines, and its equipment, during Operation Bumblebee, northeast of Yanggu, Korea.

19 October 1968:
Operation Maui Peak, a combined regimental-sized operation which began on 6 October, ended 11 miles northwest of An Hoa, Vietnam. More than 300 enemy were killed in the 13-day operation.

23 October 1983:
At 0622 an explosive-laden truck slammed into the BLT headquarters building in Beirut, Lebanon, where more than 300 men were billeted. The massive explosion collapsed the building in seconds, and took the lives of 241 Americans--including 220 Marines. This was the highest loss of life in a single day for Marines since D-Day on Iwo Jima in 1945.

28 October 1962:
An 11,000-man 5th Marine Expeditionary Brigade left Camp Pendleton by sea for the Caribbean during the Cuban Missile Crisis. One week earlier, the entire 189,000-man Marine Corps had been put on alert and elements of the 1st and 2d Marine Divisions were sent to Guantanamo Bay to reinforce the defenders of the U.S. Naval Base. Other 2d Division units and squadrons from five Marine Aircraft Groups were deployed at Key West, Florida, or in Caribbean waters during the Cuban crisis.

31 October 1919:
A patrol of Marines and gendarmes, led by Sergeant Herman H. Hanneken, disguised themselves as Cacos and entered the headquarters of the Haitian Caco Leader, Charlemagne Peralte, killing the bandit chief, and dispersing his followers. Sergeant Hanneken and Corporal William R. Button were each awarded the Medal of Honor.

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Women Marines
In secret, Lucy Brewer became the first woman to serve in the Marine Corps. Disguised as a gung-ho man, she served in the Marine Detachment aboard the USS Constitution during the War of 1812.

Over 100 years later on 12 August 1918, the Secretary of the Navy granted authority to enroll women for clerical duty in the Marine Corps Reserve. The next day, Opha M. Johnson enlisted and became the first official Woman Marine. During the remainder of World War I, 305 women enlisted to "free a man to fight." Over 20 years later during World War II, roughly 1000 officers and 18,000 enlisted women served, led by Col. Ruth C. Streeter. During the last year of the war, all available male Marines were battling the Japanese in the Pacific. In their absence, Women Marines represented over half of the personnel at Marine Corps bases in the continental United States.

A year after the end of the war, the Marine Corps retained a small nucleus of Women Marines in a postwar reserve. But, in 1948 Congress passed the Women's Armed Forces Integration Act, which authorized women in the regular component of the Corps. At the time, women could not constitute over two percent of the total force and could not hold permanent rank above lieutenant colonel. Katherine A. Towle was appointed Director of Women Marines with the temporary rank of colonel. The following year the Corps set up a recruit training battalion for women recruits at Parris Island, and a women's officer training class at Quantico.

During the Vietnam war in March 1967, MSgt. Barbara Dulinsky requested reassignment from the United States to Vietnam. She was transferred to the main military headquarters (MACV) in Saigon, the first Woman Marine to be sent to a country torn by war. But, seven years later the Commandant authorized Women Marines to serve with specialized rear echelon elements of the Fleet Marine Force. Still, these women were prohibited from deployment with combat units, or units which could conceivably be engaged in combat. Women were specifically banned from all infantry, artillery, and armor units, and they could not serve as members of aircrews.

In May 1978, BGen. Margaret Brewer became the first general grade Woman Marine, serving as Director of Information. Twenty-two years later roughly 1000 Women Marines deployed to Southwest Asia in 1990-1991, prior to and during the Gulf War. Later, because of legal mandates, the Corps was forced to accept women into Naval Aviation pilot training. In July 1993, 2ndLt. Sarah Deal became the first such Woman Marine to begin training. She graduated and received her Golden Wings on 21 April 1995.

The next year MGen. Carol A. Mutter became the first two-star Woman Marine. Two years later she was promoted again, the first Woman Marine to wear three stars. By the turn of the century in the year 2000, over 700 Woman Marines comprised about four percent of the officer corps. And, slightly over 8000 Woman Marines made up roughly five percent of the active enlisted force.

The elite Marine Corps remains the only U.S. armed service with the wisdom and courage to maintain separate boot camp training units for men and women recruits. Despite the childish whining of liberal theorists, despite the rabid ranting of ignorant politically correct zealots, the Marine Corps has not faltered. Basic training for men and women will remain separate -- but equal. All who qualify will earn the title, United States Marine.
Marine Of The Month

Lance Cpl. James M. Gluff

20, of Tunnel Hill, Ga.; assigned to the 1st Battalion, 8th Marine Regiment, 2nd Marine Division, II Marine Expeditionary Force, Camp Lejeune, N.C.; died Jan. 19 in Ramadi, Iraq, while conducting combat operations.


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