Dear Members,

Supporting Marines is what we do at the professional association for All Marines and we are only able to do it with Your help! Our Marine Excellence Awards, Commanders’ Forum, Commanders’ Unit Library, and Writing Awards programs provide recognition and professional development opportunities to many thousands of Marines throughout the Corps every year.

So far this year, through our Marine Excellence Awards Program, MCA&F provided 960 plaques, 50 Marine swords, 71 trophies, including those to recognize Marines at the C4, Ground, Ground Logistics, Wounded Warrior and Ammunition Technician Awards Dinners, along with cash awards, complimentary memberships, engraved K-Bar combat knives and much more to ensure meaningful recognition of top-notch Marines.

Our Commanders’ Unit Library Program provides the resources to foster continuing professional development of Marine units of every size. To date, MCA&F has provided over 1,600 separate military books, as well as a complete set of books from the Marine Corps Professional Reading Program to requesting units all over the world with more requests in processing. Click HERE for details on the MCA&F programs that support Marines.

The Combined Federal Campaign starts in September and runs through December and we need your help supporting and expanding our programs. For those of you on active duty or in the Federal workplace, please remember the Marine Corps Association Foundation, CFC # 19821 when choosing an organization to donate to this year. Thanks for supporting the Marine Corps Association Foundation and helping us support Marines!

September will be “event rich” for MCA&F.  On the 6th, we will host the MCA&F Professional Dinner in Arlington, VA featuring General Martin Dempsey, USA, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs as the guest speaker.  Listening to his perspectives on national security issues at this critical juncture provides a unique opportunity for you.

On 21 September, and in conjunction with the Marine Corps Intelligence Enterprise, we will host the 2nd Annual MCA&F Intelligence Awards Dinner featuring the Marine Corps’ 2011 Intel award recipients. General James F. Amos, Commandant of the Marine Corps will be the guest speaker and present the awards. Click HERE for details and to register.  If you can’t come to either of these events, visit our website HERE to see how to watch the “livestream” videos. 

The Modern Day Marine EXPO will be held again this year at Quantico and your professional association will staff a booth reaching out to the thousands of visitors who are expected for the event. The Expo will run from 25-27 September, and I hope you will make it a point to visit the MCA&F booth 1026.

MCA&F’s flagship magazines continue to be of tremendous service to Marines and friends of the Corps in terms of telling our story and presenting the significant issues affecting Marines and our national security. As a logistician, I am particularly pleased to recommend the September edition of Marine Corps Gazette with its focus on Marine Corps logistics in an era of declining fiscal resources. Leatherneck’s coverage of the battle for Iwo Jima through the unique perspective of the Marine combat correspondents and photographers who were in the thick of the action is not to be missed!  Click the links to read them both Online today:

I always enjoy hearing from our members and supporters. If you have any stories you want to share about how the professional association for ALL Marines has made a positive impact in your life, or the life of a loved one or comrade, I would love to hear it. Write me at

All the Best & Semper Fidelis,

Edward G. Usher, III
Major General, USMC (Ret)
President and Chief Executive Officer


A Colorful Cause

MCA&F Awards OCS Staff, Candidates for Performance

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Remember to update your mailing address if you move. Log in at our website, HERE, OR, call us at 866-622-1775 to update your address record.

If your membership is about to expire click HERE to renew or join. Consider a multi-year membership to save yourself from having to renew each year.

Unit Commanders' Reminder
– Appropriated funds for subscriptions to both Leatherneck and Marine Corps Gazette for your Marines are approved for use and government credit cards are accepted. Order your Unit Subscriptions TODAY and get your Marines some first class professional reading! Click Here to order today.


ONLINE access to BOTH Leatherneck and Marine Corps Gazette comes with EVERY Membership!

Visit each magazine’s website TODAY. Click the links below!

Marine Corps Gazette
Gazette has a focus on logistics in the September issue.  As we wind down from the war in Afghanistan and try to refit and rearm the Marine Corps for the next fight, we will face monumental logistical challenges.  The September issue details how we will meet those challenges.  In addition, September contains articles on amphibious operations and a caution on not losing the expertise we have gained in irregular warfare as we return to the sea.

Gazette’s Book Drawing.  Click the link below to enter our FREE monthly book drawing! Visit often and enter EVERY month!  Did we mention it’s free?

By now, you have had the opportunity to read your September Leatherneck online and enjoy the added content—particularly the “Love is in the Air” article by retired Colonel John Bates-which, in the digital edition, includes additional photographs and a video of triple-amputee Cpl Love playing the piano. Many of you will have your September magazine in hand so let us hear your thoughts. Go online to to comment or just email us at

Looking ahead to October, among the numerous articles, you’ll find a comprehensive wrap-up on the recently completed 1st MEB Exercise Javelin Thrust by 1stLt Garth M. Langley; a tip of the cover to the Navajo Code Talkers who visited MCAS Yuma by LCpl William Overstreet; a 50th anniversary tribute to the Marines of the Cuban Missile Crisis by a Marine who was on the k/4/10 gunline in Gitmo during the Crisis; and, one more to highlight: “Not a Good Candidate Ever for a Desk Job,” the incredible true story of Major Peter Ortiz, Marine, member of the OSS, twice POW of the Germans, race car driver, legionnaire and movie star. You will be amazed and motivated by this Laura Homan Lacey article.

  • Reader / Member Input. Got something newsworthy? Send to and our Member Update Coordinator will consider including your item.
  • MCA&F 2012 Birthday Ball Catalog NOW available! Click HERE for the Digital Edition of our Marine Corps Birthday Ball catalog. We offer the widest selection of party supplies, mementoes and souvenirs that will enliven any Birthday Ball, retirement, promotion or other celebration. Easily accessible ONLINE and very responsive, we can ship your order anywhere you live or serve. Order early though to ensure on time delivery.

  • Marine Continuing Education Champion!
    Shout out to retired SgtMaj Pete Seagriff and MCA&F Member who advises that he completed and received 502 MCI Extension Course Certificates during his 28 years on active duty and then took another 139 courses after retiring.  HAS to be some kind of record even though he took several more than once!   What a great example for younger Marines.  Good on you SgtMaj.  Send us a picture of you in your “I love Me” Room with all your framed plaques and certs and we will post it!  Keep on trucking  and congratulations.
  • MCA&F - Out and About - In and Around.
    On 28 August Col John Keenan, MCA&F’s Marine Corps Gazette editor, assisted by MCA&F Quantico Area Representative provided a MCA&F mission and membership brief to the Lieutenants of Echo Company, The Basic School.  Following the brief, the Lieutenants assembled in the “Green Carpet” area for traditional Marine Corps camaraderie at a reception sponsored by the Marine Corps Association & Foundation. Two kegs of yummy Biersch Marzen beer and some heavy snackatizers enlivened the event as the Lieutenants were welcomed aboard!  

    MCA&F traditionally welcomes newly formed TBS companies in this fashion to introduce them to the association’s programs that support Marines and hosts similar events for other Quantico schools as well.

    Pictures will follow later...

  • MHT Bermuda Golf Tour. Enjoy delightful weather in early November on the Military History Tours Bermuda Golf Tour along with tennis, the beach, snorkeling, fishing shopping and sightseeing along with a gala Marine Corps Birthday “Bash.” Click HERE for details, registration and other great MHT tour opportunities!

  • Annual GySgt John Basilone Memorial Celebration.
    Join the 3 day celebration honoring Marine, Medal of Honor recipient, John Basilone in Raritan, New Jersey.  The celebration is scheduled for 21-23 September and features a commemorative concert by the Quantico Marine Band, a celebration breakfast, a memorial parade and more. For details go HERE.

  • Websites of the Month

Q. Marine companies and batteries are all authorized to display a unit guidon at official ceremonies, parades and marches.  The official guidons are Marine scarlet with an Eagle, Globe & Anchor along with the unit designation.  Which company or battery is officially authorized to carry a guidon with a skull and crossbones along with the unit nickname on it?  AND, what is the unit nickname?


How to Win.  Send your answers to and please include your name and address so we can send your prize. We will hold a drawing of all CORRECT responses one week from the Member Update release date and then announce the winner in the next edition of the Update.

The Prize! In addition to our “Once a Marine – ALWAYS a Marine” Coin, we are now including a whiz bang MCA&F ball cap so you can strut your stuff in style!

Here’s last month’s Trivia Contest question:

Question: An uncomplimentary term used by front-line Marines to describe non-combat troops stationed well behind the FEBA? A newer term that starts with the acronym for certain forward deployed outposts used today in Afghanistan and ends with a reference to the diminutive creatures who were the central characters in a highly popular, epic trilogy.

Answer: Fobbits! The first letters of the term Forward Operating Bases (FOB) combined with the ending of Hobbits and used as a derogatory description of those denizens so assigned who never seem to make it outside the wire. 

An older term in four letters beginning with “R” and ending in “F” which shall go undefined here for censorship reasons was a frequent response and captured much of the idea but did not fit with the epic movie angle.  Keep it clean Marines!!!!! Pogue was also a popular choice but does not quite fit either.

Congratulations to Donald Perkins of Raleigh, NC for winning our last contest.

This Month in Marine Corps History


7 August 1942
The 1st MarDiv landed at Guadalcanal to open the WWII land offensive.

Codenamed Operation Watchtower, the campaign to capture Guadalcanal, Tulagi and Florida in the southern Solomon Islands was the first major offensive against the Japanese Empire and started the rollback from the Japanese high-water mark in the Pacific. Initial amphibious landings began on 7 August and the lengthy campaign extended to February, 1943 with the objective of securing the islands to preclude the Japanese from using them to threaten supply lines between the U.S. and Australia and New Zealand and also to secure bases from which to continue offensive operations against the Japanese.  A brutal, combined arms campaign, the drawn out affair involved three major land battles, seven extensive naval engagements with five nighttime surface actions and two carrier battles with air raids against ground and naval forces continuous throughout.

The 1st Marine Division served with distinction throughout the seesaw battle with minimal supplies and intermittent naval support under the command of Maj Gen Alexander Vandegrift who was awarded the Medal of Honor for his exemplary leadership throughout the battle and later became the first Marine to be promoted to General and also served as Commandant of the Marine Corps.  The battle made such an indelible impression on the men of the 1st Marine Division that they included “Guadalcanal” in the division’s logo to commemorate the epic action. In addition to General Vandegrift, two other legendary Marines, Mitchell Paige and “Manila” John Basilone were also awarded the Medal of Honor for heroic action during the battle. 

Read more about the battle and the Marines who fought there in these books available from


MCA&F hosts professional and awards dinners, professional lunches, book signings and more. Check out our professional events schedule at Click on the link for details and event registration. Here are a couple of events coming up in the near future:

  • 6 September 2012         
    MCA&F Professional Dinner
    – Guest Speaker – General Martin Dempsey, USA, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff
    Last call to reserve your seat.  Reservations close today at 3:00p.m.

  • 21 September 2012
    MCA&F Intelligence Dinner – Guest Speaker – General James F. Amos, Commandant of the Marine Corps
  • 25 September 2012    
    Book Signing with Richard Lowry, author of New Dawn: The Battles of Fallujah and also Marines in the Garden of Eden

Special Announcement!
MCA&F NOW broadcasts “Livestream” videos of our professional dinners for the viewing pleasure and convenience of our members and friends of the Corps! Can’t go to the dinner? No problem! View it at home on your computer. It is easy to do. Check out the MCA&F Facebook site or the MCA&F website for the announcement with the link to the Livestream and open it up at the designated time and watch the action.

If you miss the Livestream video then you can still view the event. Just go to our MCA&F website at and click on the “Programs/Events” option on the top tool bar and select “Past Events.” Then select the event of your choice to see a summary, pictures and videos of the event.


Thank you for your support of our valuable programs for Marines which include:

Commanders’ Unit Library Program
To date in 2012, this program has established or enhanced the professional libraries for 94 Marine unit libraries to support commander’s professional development objectives. Additional requests are processing.

Marine Excellence Awards Program
This year, through the end of March, this program has provided recognition for the professional accomplishments of over 700 Marines with tangible awards in the form of K-Bars, watches, professional books, cash awards, plaques, Marine swords, trophies and complimentary memberships.

Commanders’ Forum Program
During the 31July-1 August time frame MCAF supported the Marine Corps Martial Arts Center of Excellence for a study of the Gettysburg Civil War Battlefield with funding for participant overnight lodging in the vicinity.

On 10 August, MCA&F provided support for the Marine For Life Program with a tour guide and box lunches for 75 participants to study the Antietam National Battlefield in Maryland.

Eighty participants from the Basic School staff will conduct a two-day PME study of the Gettysburg battlefield in October with MCAF providing the support for lodging.

The officers and SNCO’s of 2nd LAR Battalion will also conduct a PME study of the Chancellorsville battle site in October.

Visit our website at
to learn more about how the programs work and what they have accomplished for Marines!

MCAF is a 501(c)(3) charitable foundation so your support may qualify for tax deductions.

Don’t Forget that MCAF is a Combined Federal Campaign Participant!
We invite you to make MCA&F at least one of your donation recipients during this year’s CFC Campaign!


CFC Donor Code is 19821


MCAF Auction!

MCAF is holding a new silent auction for a number of items including the Marine aviation painting and framed picture of the World Trade Center observed from a Marine plan.  Additional auction prizes include a complete, 4 year, Online degree program provided by Grantham University and a tour by Military Historical Tours. Click HERE for details and bid submission instructions.

Click the hotlinked logos for more information on Grantham University’s 1st Rate academic programs and MHT’s schedule of 1st Class tours to battlefields that will excite every Marine!


Corporate Support Welcome! MCA&F welcomes corporate support for our professional programs. Contact LeeAnn Mitchell at for more information.

Call Us toll-free: 877-469-6223 (877-4MY-MCAF) or 703-640-0174 (



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