Dear Members,

On 6 September, the MCA&F hosted a Professional Dinner featuring General Martin Dempsey, USA, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs as the guest speaker. A big fan of Marines, the general shared his experiences with Marines and offered up several toasts to Marines, the Marine Corps, and the great families of Marines. A summary of his remarks and a video of the event can be viewed HERE.

In conjunction with the Marine Corps Intelligence Directorate, we co-hosted the 2d Annual MCA&F Intelligence Awards Dinner on 21 September to recognize the achievements of outstanding Marine Intelligence community Marines during 2011. General James F. Amos, Commandant of the Marine Corps was the guest speaker and helped present the awards which included the new Director Intelligence Innovation Award. Click HERE to see a summary of the Commandant’s remarks, additional pictures and a video of the event.

Modern Day Marine Expo was held at Quantico between 25-27 September and MCA&F staffed a booth there to greet a host of Marines and friends of the Corps and to recruit new members. We handed out free magazines, posters and related items during the course of the event. If you attended, we hope you dropped by our booth to say hi. Here are some pictures of the event:    

Coming up in October, we will co-host the MCA&F Combat Development Dinner with the Marine Corps Combat Development Command on 18 October at Quantico and feature LtGen Jon Davis, USMC, Deputy Commander, U.S. Cyber Command as the guest speaker.  Click HERE to register and get more information.

The MCA&F Camp Lejeune Fall Luncheon is slated for 31 October and features SgtMaj Robert “Grant” Van Oostrom, SgtMaj II MEF as the guest speaker.  If you live anywhere in the area, don’t miss this opportunity. Click HERE to register and get additional details on the luncheon.

Mission execution… Advancing Leadership and Recognizing Excellence. Our leadership and mentoring programs are in full swing. Our Marine Excellence Awards Program has provided almost 7,000 awards recognizing the professional accomplishments of Marines so far this year, including those awards for this month’s Intelligence Awards Dinner mentioned earlier.  The Commanders’ Unit Library Program has processed unit requests for the establishment or enhancement of 212 unit libraries this year supporting professional development efforts for over 6,700 Marines.  Our Commanders’ Forum Program processed support requests for a battle study for select Basic School staff at Gettysburg and for MACG-18 to study the battle of Okinawa in October.

The 2012 Combined Federal Campaign started this month and runs until the end of December. We ask for your help in supporting and expanding our programs.  For those of you on active duty or in the Federal workplace, please remember to make the Marine Corps Association Foundation, CFC # 19821 one of your choices when you donate this year. Thanks for supporting the Marine Corps Association Foundation and helping us to support Marines! 

I always enjoy hearing from our members and supporters.  If you have any stories you might 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 about it. Write me at

All the Best & Semper Fidelis,

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


A Legacy Alive

MCA&F Sponsors Gettysburg Battle Study

Basic School Honor Graduates Receive Awards from MCA&F

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Don’t forget to update your mailing address if you move. Log in HERE, OR, call us at 866-622-1775 to update your address record.

If your membership is expiring click HERE to renew or join. Consider a multi-year membership!  

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
The October issue of the Gazette has articles that are informative for all readers and articles that are useful for Marines still on active duty. We have several articles on irregular warfare, leadership and a very provocative article on a subject near and dear to most Marines-promotions. I would also urge you to go to and check out the new digital edition of the Gazette. It is user friendly and contain articles not included in the paper edition.

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?

We hope you are enjoying your October Leatherneck by now and if you are an online reader, you are. The October digital edition was available 21 September, presenting the same broad array of articles as our print edition, including current Marine Corps operations and training articles  and historical articles on the mighty A-4 Skyhawk, the desperate fighting on Hill 812 in the Korean War, the Cuban Missile Crisis (50 years ago), and, a personality feature on a larger than life Marine legend, Pete Ortiz, and much more. Let us know what you think and be sure to check out the new digital edition features.

Looking ahead to November, our Marine Corps Birthday issue, in addition to a regular mix of content celebrating the Corps yesterday, today and tomorrow, we’ll include a special insert on the Senior Leaders of Our Corps. Stand by for action.

  • MCA&F - Out and About - In and Around.

  • 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!

  • Talk Like a Pirate Day – 19 September. One day a year you get to talk like a pirate.  Miss it this year? Click the “Official” website HERE to  get some pointers on how to talk like a pirate and to learn more about this festive opportunity.  As Marines are part of the naval service and should be using nautical terminology by custom, we encourage you to stick with the piratical lingo even though it is after the date. EVEN BETTER – go to the Leatherneck website HERE to become and instant expert on Marine Lingo!  Talking like a Marine is getting to be a lost art.  Pick it up and amaze your friends!

  • Counterbattery Radar VS Insurgent Mortar. Three rounds and GONZO!  Great video taken by insurgent cameraman covering a VERY brief mortar engagement on our forces in Afghanistan followed by rapid response American artillery strike. Very motivating and of course we love the smell of cordite in the morning.  Smells like victory!  Get SOME! – Thanks Bob!

  • F-35B Sea Trials aboard U.S.S. Wasp. Inspiring footage of what is seems to be developing into a superior asset for Naval and expeditionary warfare. Definitely appears to be a marked improvement over the still useful AV-8 Harrier. Looks like it handles well. Thanks Tony D.

  • Specialty Seminar: Opportunities for Veterans in Franchising. VetFran will host a free seminar for veterans as part of the West Coast Franchise Expo in Anaheim, California. The subject is “Opportunities for Veterans in Franchising” and will take place Friday, 12 October from 1330-1430 in room 213D of the Anaheim Convention Center.  FREE to Veterans. Click HERE for more information and to register.

  • Websites of the Month
    • Click HERE to visit Marine Corps Gazette’s Blog.  Raging controversies and hot topic discussions.  Have an opinion?  SHARE IT here. Give the leadership up the food chain a wake- up call!  We dare you…

    • Visit The MARINE Shop online HERE. Did you know that you can sign up for email notifications of news of new products, specials, sales and more there?  Select the “Get Emails / Join” option on the left side of the homepage screen and we will add you to our address list.

Q. Two Marines were awarded the Navy Cross in both WW-I and WW-II. Who were they?


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: 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?

Answer: C Company, 1st Battalion, 7th Marines, under the command of LtCol Lewis B. “Chesty” Puller was holding a defensive position at Henderson Field at Guadalcanal on the morning of 24 October 1942 flanked by Alpha and Bravo companies when hit by a substantial Japanese force of three regiments and elements of another brigade at around 2200.  After the night’s carnage a flag was waving proudly over the company with a skull and cross bones painted on it and the legend 1st Battalion, 7th Marines “Suicide Charley.”  The flag later appeared on Peleliu and again in Korea to motivate the Marines of C Company and the history of the flag and “Suicide Charley” has been passed down to generations of Marines serving in the company.  In 1961, the 1st Marine Division’s Commanding General officially authorized the company to display and carry the guidon at all official ceremonies and functions and the tradition survives to this day.  Read more HERE.

Congratulations to Maj Gary Cozzens for winning our last contest. Major Cozzens advises that he was the commanding officer of Suicide Charley in the 1985!

This Month in Marine Corps History


1 September 1936

Mitchell Paige enlists in the Marine Corps. 

Guadalcanal in October of 1942, Mitchell Paige held a defensive position against strong Japanese attacks even after all of his comrades were killed or wounded. With reinforcements, he led a determined counterattack which repelled the Japanese. For his heroic action during the battle, he was awarded a battlefield commission to the rank of 2nd Lt and was later presented with the Medal of Honor by MajGen Alexander Vandegrift in Australia. Paige fought in the Korean War and retired as a Colonel. The campaign for Guadalcanal was our first offensive action against the Japanese in the war and grew into a Naval and land force battle of epic proportions.


17 September
Constitution Day.
Click HERE to visit the U.S. Government archive site with pictures of the constitution and where it is stored as well as a transcript of the document and a historical perspective on its significance. This document underpins American freedom, the organization of the federal government and is probably the most influential political document ever published in the history of civilization. EVERY American citizen should read it and reflect on the blessings of liberty that adherence to this document has secured for our country.


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:

  • 18 October 2012         
    MCA&F Combat Development Dinner

    Guest Speaker – LtGen Jon Davis, USMC, Deputy Commander, U.S. Cyber Command  

  • 31 October 2012
    MCA&F Camp Lejeune Fall Luncheon
    Guest Speaker – SgtMaj Robert “Grant” Van Oostrom, SgtMaj, II MEF
  • 29 November 2012    
    MCA&F Ground Dinner
    Guest Speaker – TBD

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:

Commandersí Professional Library Program
In 2012, this program established or enhanced the professional libraries for 207 Marine units to support commander’s professional development objectives.

Marine Excellence Awards Program
Through the end of August, this program provided recognition for the professional accomplishments of over 6,900 Marines.  These are tangible awards including 36 K-Bars, watches, over 1,705 professional books including one complete set of books from the USMC Professional Reading List, 52 cash awards, over 1,015 plaques, 50Marine swords, 76 trophies, 90 complimentary memberships and more.

Commanders’ Forum Program
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.

Members of MACG-18, will conduct a battle study of select Okinawa battle sites in October with transportation and tour guide provided by MCA&F.

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


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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