Okay, every child has a dream. I do not know why, when nor where, I developed the desire to become a MARINE. I had never met a marine none of my close kin were marines, and my brothers were sailors. I admired them both, why wasn’t my dream to be a sailor. Sailing to exotic ports around the world?
Well in 1955 I met Sam Waters and he told me how I could join the Corps at 16. I followed his instructions and nearly made it. But I was kicked back until I was 17. So on January 19th, 1956 I arrived at PARRIS ISLAND. WOW, a dream come true. Was I surprised, to a young fellow it was a night mare. I was sure that SSgt W.D. Mayberry could do anything, and the world outside Parris Island would not know nor care.
(That is me, front row, second from the right, 17yrs and one day old)
There were many nights this kid lay in his ‘rack’ fighting back tears and hoping I would wake up at mama’s house and it would all be a dream, but it never happened.
(Washing clothes). “Smile boy or I will kick your ass, I’m sending this to your mama, show her you are enjoying this vacation,” SSgt Mayberry.
Some folk do not know that as a marine Boot, you do not leave Parris Island, nor ‘YOUR PLATOON’ until you are kicked out, dead or graduate. No visits to the club at night. No weekends in Beaufort to unwind. No ‘brew’ at a party. You are with your fellow boots and one of your 3 drill instructors of ‘your’ platoon from the first day until you graduate. You eat, sleep, crap, and shower always in their presence. Anyone wanting privacy for a minute, had better look someplace else.
Visitors were discouraged. You were instructed to inform your family you would be too busy for visitors. I forgot to tell Sherry. She came to visit me twice. I took some flack for the first visit of course, the other not so much because I was the DI’s pride, his ‘High Shooter’, I had tied the range record on pre-qualification day, but on Qualification I only set the months record, but still it was a high score.
So this year, Sherry said, “I want to go back to Parris Island for my birthday?” WHAT? I know, she wasn’t asking a hard thing, I have always refused before, but for her Birthday, what the heck.
Crossing the Salt Swamp To PI
Beautiful Tropical look.
Called the Drill Field.
Funny even deaf, I could hear him yelling at the recruit!~
(The dream of every marine, Raise that FLAG)
Sherry in an area where we went to steal f few kisses, January 1956,
She refused to let me take her picture here. She was remembering Her Marine, of 57 years ago.
She was thinking, he used to have hair. LOL
Thanks for joining us on Pleasure Island. No I did not bake her a chocolate cake, but she ordered a triple chocolate brownie after dinner at the Red Lobster….. (She did get a Ham & cheese Omelet, grits, biscuit, molasses and butter for breakfast and a relaxing massage from her favorite MARINE (Airman and sailor).
Life is good, here in our motor home. Randomly, One of us will sing that old song line, “I’m so glad you came into my life,” then both of us will smile and sing, “THANK YOU BABY!”
The car I borrowed to go to her house and ask for the first date.
Above it the first car I kissed her in.
We owned this when we got married.