Dear Members,

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!

As we close out 2010 I’d like to let you know what the MCA and MCAF have accomplished in support of our great Marines. Through our Commanders’ Unit Library Program we provided over 200 professional libraries to Marine units worldwide. These libraries are our most requested program and provide commanders and their Marines the means to advance individual and unit professional development. Our Marine Excellence Award Program has had a milestone year. This year we presented over 10,000 awards to Marines recognizing their noteworthy accomplishments. The awards recognize and honor the top graduates from most of our formal schools and include Marine Corps level leadership awards that recognize the top Marine leaders in their field.  We initiated our Commanders’ Forums program this year with a panel discussion in Boston in the spring and MCA Co-sponsored “A Conversation on Counterinsurgency” with Dr. David Kilcullen. We have several other Forum events planned for 2011.

These programs would not be possible without our MCA members, Corporate Sponsors, and individual donors to the Marine Corps Association Foundation. On behalf of our Marines - Thank you for your support and generosity.

In May we revitalized our social media effort as a way to tell the Marine and MCA story. We now have more than 23,000 Facebook fans across our sites. Please take a moment to visit our Facebook page and read the comments and postings. The outpouring of support for our Marines on the site is heartwarming including a number of poignant postings from proud Marine parents.

In the New Year we will work to expand the MCA professional events beyond the Washington DC area. On January 26th we’ll hold our first West Coast dinner in Carlsbad, CA with the Honorable Robert O. Work, Under Secretary of the Navy, as our guest speaker. I hope to be able to do other events throughout the United States to better connect with our members and our friends of the Corps.

I wish you all a very happy holiday and good health and success in the New Year! As always, please let me hear from you. You can do that by emailing MCA at

Semper Fi,

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


Member Section

  • Reader / Member Input. Do YOU have something newsworthy to share with your fellow MCA Members? Send it to us for consideration and possible posting in YOUR Member Update! Anniversaries, Reunions, unit news, major milestones? Send to  and our Member Update Coordinator will consider including your item.

  • Honoring a West Virginia, Vietnam Era Marine. LCpl Rodney A. Breedlove, deceased Marine Veteran from Alkol, WV who served with Fox Company, 2nd Battalion, 1st Marines and died in combat operations in the Que Son Valley in Vietnam is expected to be honored by the West Virginia state legislature by naming a section of WV State Route 3 from Yawkey, WV to the intersection of US 119 with signage declaring the section to be the “LCpl Rodney A. Breedlove Memorial Highway.” A service commemorating the honor and LCpl Breedlove will be held at the Sycamore Grace Baptist Church, near Julian WV at 1400 on 30 April 2011.

    Thanks to MCA Life Member, Colonel Charles Davis for advising us.

  • Good News About Gene Duncan. Recently ailing and in a condition serious enough to warrant hospice care, Gene informs us that he has recovered sufficiently to be released and allowed by doctors to return to his own home in Ft Wayne, Indiana. Gene is the author of a number of humorous and insightful books about those unique creatures – MARINES and how to lead, motivate and understand them! Many thanks to all whose prayers and kind wishes for Gene have made a difference. Here is his address if you would like to send him a greeting card:

    Maj Gene Duncan, USMC (Ret)
    6904 Woodtrail Ct.
    Fort Wayne, Indiana 46835

Of Interest to Marines


    An organization called Veterans Affairs Services (VAS) is providing benefit and general information on VA and gathering personal information on veterans.

    This organization is not affiliated with VA in any way.

    VAS may be gaining access to military personnel through their close resemblance to the VA name and seal.  Our Legal Counsel has requested that we coordinate with DoD to inform military installations, particularly mobilization sites, of this group and their lack of affiliation or endorsement by VA to provide any services.

    In addition, GC requests that if you have any examples of VAS acts that violate chapter 59 of Title 38 United States Code, such as VAS employees assisting veterans in the preparation and presentation of claims for benefits, please pass any additional information to Mr.Daugherty at the address below.

    Michael G. Daugherty
    Staff Attorney
    Department of Veterans Affairs
    Office of General Counsel (022G2)
    810 Vermont Avenue, NW
    Washington, DC 20420
  • Personalized News Notifications from MCA Website NOW AVAILABLE.                                
    Don’t Miss a Thing! Keep Connected…

    Don’t have the time to visit our sites daily?  Keep connected by signing up for personalized notification of news that matters most to you!  We’ll keep you connected by sending an email with the previous day’s content.  Visit  for more information.

Q. Which combat operation, involving over 92,000 Marines, is the largest in Marine Corps history?


How to Win.  Send your answers to and please include your name and address so we can send you 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 the highly coveted Marine Corps Association Coin, we are now including our handy new Four in One gadget as a bonus.  Be the first in your neighborhood to get one!

Here’s a short version of our trivia question from last month:

Question:  What was the “Chowder Society” and how did it get its name?

Answer:  The Chowder Society was a group of officers under General Merrill Twining who were the intellectual impetus behind the Corps’ efforts to remain a separate service at the end of WWII and to resist service unification.

It got its name from a popular comic of the day “Barnaby.” The title character was short, and bore a resemblance to then Colonel Victor H. “Brute” Krulak, one of the principals in the Twining effort. Barnaby had a fairy godfather named Jackeen O’Malley and he belonged to a club called the “Elves, Leprechauns, Gnomes and Little Men’s Chowder & Marching Society.”  A copy of the cartoon was hung on Krulak’s office with a Little Men’s Chowder & Marching Society underlined and Barnaby labeled “Krulak.” Their output or “Chowder” saved the Corps.

Congratulations to Donald Perkins of Raleigh, NC for wining the November contest!

ONLINE access to BOTH Leatherneck and Marine Corps Gazette is a KEY Benefit that comes with EVERY Membership / Subscription at no extra charge! 

Click on the Links below to Visit Each magazine’s website TODAY.


Leatherneck magazine adds its best wishes for a healthy and Happy New Year. We thank you for your support in 2010 and look forward to 2011. To kickoff the year, we lead with a cover story on The Citadel-The Military College of South Carolina and source of many Marine leaders. Included are articles on Marine Corps combat shooting, the Marine Corps Scholarship Foundation, the combined action program in Vietnam, Lincoln at Gettysburg, a tribute to the 20th anniversary of Desert Shield/Desert Storm and leathernecks in Afghanistan.  Stay in touch, so we'll be in touch.

Marine Corps Gazette
Happy New Year and we hope that you enjoy the January edition of the Marine Corps Gazette. This issue has a focus on Marine Special Operations Command, MAGTF doctrine and training. The commentary focus is on the future of the Corps. Enjoy the January Gazette and join the debate by emailing us your comments or opinion.

Here is the photo we used for our January cover. YATYAS comes immediately to mind!

Corps Daily News. Get the latest news about Marines at Corps Daily News featured prominently on BOTH the Marine Corps Gazette and Leatherneck websites as well as on the MCA Homepage.  Visiting daily is a tremendous way to stay connected and informed!

This Month in Marine Corps History


1 Dec 1947                       
The Corps’s first helicopter squadron, HMX-1 was commissioned at Quantico. Originally an experimental squadron, while helicopters were in their infancy, the Squadron initially used Sikorsky (left) and Piasecki (right) helicopters. Primitive…

7 Dec 1941

The day that will live in infamy! The Japanese launch a surprise attack on the American Fleet located at the Pearl Harbor, Hawaii Naval base (and other locations) resulting in the loss of more than 3,000 sailors and Marines killed as well as numerous ships, including the battleship Arizona.

12 Dec 2001
Task Force 58, commanded by BGen James Mattis rolled through Kandahar, Afghnanistan and secured the city’s airport. Launched from the sea, over 650 miles away, over 2,000 Marines from 15th MEU landed in southern Afghanistan in November 2001 and secured an operating base, Camp Rhino, 55 miles south of Kandahar, the Taliban stronghold. The ground campaign of Operation Enduring Freedom commenced.

24 Dec 1950

The last elements of the 1st Marine Division departed Hungnam, North Korea following their retreat from the Chosin Reservoir.


MCA’s projected events are detailed for you below. You’re Invited. Bring a Friend!

21 January
Book signing with Frank Cox, author of Lullabies for Lieutenants

Quantico, VA

26 January
West Coast MCA Dinner
Guest Speaker –The Honorable Robert O. Work, Under Secretary of the Navy
Sheraton Carlsbad
Carlsbad, CA

3 February
MCAF Ground Logistics Awards Dinner
Guest Speaker – TBD
Crystal Gateway Marriott
Arlington, VA

14 April
MCA C4 Awards Dinner
Guest Speaker – TBD
Crystal Gateway Marriott
Arlington, VA

Visit the MCAF website: for more information on our events and our programs.


Thanks to our Sponsors and Donors who supported our Marine Excellence Awards and Leadership Programs throughout 2010.

We look forward to continuing these beneficial programs and supporting Marines with Sponsor, Donor and Member support in 2011  when we will be adding two Name Sake Awards.  MCA's Ground Logistics Awards Dinner will feature the new 1stLt Travis Manion Logistics Officer of the Year Award and the MCA Ground Award Dinner will be adding the Douglas Zembiec MARSOC Team Leader of the Year Award. 

If you haven't made your tax-deductible donation to our Foundation for 2010 yet or would like to start the year off right with a donation in 2011 , please call 877-469-6223 or donate online at our secure site:

The Foundation welcomes corporate support for our professional programs. Interested sponsors are invited to contact LeeAnn Mitchell at for more information.

Click HERE to visit our sponsor page and see the complete list of companies supporting MCA and MCAF events programs that help OUR Marines!

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



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