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					                                                                       DEPARTMENT OF
                                                                  MARINE CORPS LEAGUE

 A Quarterly Newsletter of the Department of Georgia                             Feburary 2009

                 Department                           WITH THE RIGHT HAND AND PLACE THEIR
                   Commandant’s                       RIGHT HAND OVER THEIR HEART. WHEN THE
                                                      FLAG IS NOT PRESENT, MARINES WILL ACT IN
                          Message                     THE SAME MANNER WHILE FACING IN THE
                  League Members,                     DIRECTION OF THE MUSIC. IN CASES SUCH
                  I have a couple of topics that I AS INDOOR CEREMONIES, WHEN MARINES
                  would like to bring to your ARE IN UNIFORM AND UNCOVERED, THEY
attention. On October 31, 2008 an order was WILL FACE THE FLAG OR THE DIRECTION OF
passed down from the National Leadership THE MUSIC WHEN THE FLAG IS NOT PRESENT,
regarding a change in policy on rendering a salute AND STAND AT ATTENTION.”
whether in uniform or not. This was a result of a Section (2) of the Marine Corps League National
change Defense Authorization Act of 2009 and Congressional Charter states “That the purposes of
was signed into law on October 14, 2008. The this corporation shall be: (a) to preserve and
change would allow veterans and active-duty promote the interests of the Unites States Marine
military not in uniform to render the military-style Corps.
hand salute during the playing of the national I have just returned from the Mid-Winter conference
anthem and all events involving our nation’s flag.    of our Marine Corps League. This was but one of
However, General Conway, the Commandant of the the topics of discussion. I learned a lot and have a
Marine Corps, published ALMAR 52/08 which great deal to pass along to all Detachments. Please
states in paragraph 3:                                make sure your Detachment has a representative
“SALUTING. A RECENT CHANGE TO THE LAW at the Staff Meeting in Athens on Saturday, 28
SERVICEMEMBERS TO SALUTE THE NATIONAL                         Semper Fi, Michael Clark, Commandant
COLORS,         WHETHER         COVERED           OR                             Department of Georgia
THE HAND SALUTE WHEN OUT OF UNIFORM Our Qtrly Staff Meeting will be in Athens on
DURING THE PLAYING OF THE NATIONAL VSO Locke has arranged for quarters at the
ANTHEM, OR THE RAISING, LOWERING, OR Navy School. Nine 2-roomsuites @ $50 a night
                                                      and a few smaller units @ $40 are available.
WILL      CONTINUE      TO     FOLLOW        NAVAL
                                                      Reservations must be made by Feb. 23rd. No-
CONTAINED           IN      REFERENCE            (A). shows will be charged cost of room same as
SPECIFICALLY, MARINES NOT IN UNIFORM hotel practices. You will need picture ID's,
WILL FACE THE FLAG, STAND AT ATTENTION, auto registration and proof of insurance to
AND PLACE THE RIGHT HAND OVER THEIR                   get on base if not retired with base stickers and
HEART.   IF COVERED, MARINES NOT IN retire ID cards. Passengers will need picture ID
UNIFORM WILL REMOVE THEIR HEADGEAR  cards. If questions? Contact Gary Locke at 706
                                                    248-2228 or email to .
__                     DETACHMENTS IN ACTION                                             __
       Savannah Detachment # 564                          Savannah/Hilton Head International Airport. This
                     Savannah                             group watches as the “young recruits” comes into
                                                          Savannah heading for Parris Island, SC. Although,
It is amazing at what can be done when all the            they are the same age as most of our members
member work together to accomplish the mission…           were when heading out to basic schools, but to us
“Patriotism!” Many of this detachment have been           they look so young. We see the nervous fear of the
a group that has accomplished many things                 unknown on their faces, not knowing what to expect
together. Some of this group went off to war              for the first few weeks of preparation to be “The
together, helped to form 564 and still remain a unit      Few, The Proud, A Marine”. It is often said to them,
that is dedicated to the service of our military, i. e.   “it not always easy, but look at us, we made it and
“young Marines; veterans, like ourselves; and the         you will to”, we are proud of you!
many in the community.                                       In October, the Albany, Marine Corps League
   Still very active and some 87 members strong we        Detachment, kicked off their “Toys for Tots”
find ourselves grieving the loose of 6 members this       campaign, our detachment loaded a bus and made
past year, but still pressing forward to stay very        our way to western Georgia for the 8th & I Color
busy with community endeavors. As the war in Iraq         Guard and Silent Drill Team as they performed at
and Afghanistan is still calling our men and women        the Albany Civic Center. On our journey to Albany,
into harms way our members are actively present           we made a stop in Tifton, GA as one of the local
with the deployment and re-deployment of not only         middle schools was sponsoring the original Vietnam
OUR Marines, but the U. S. Army (3rd ID infantry),        Memorial traveling Wall. On our stop, we were
Air Force, and Reservist that have been called to         greeted by the many students of the history
active duty abroad.                                       department to extend a hearty “Thank you” for our
   Probably, the majority of our nation is not aware      donation and support.
that a large percentage of our soldiers deploy and           November found us hustling around for the
re-deploy from Hunter Army Airfield located in            various activities that took place throughout the
Savannah, Georgia, but they do. As a result, we           month. We danced our way into the night as our
find ourselves at the DAAGA Center at all hours of        active Marines, stationed at Hunter Army Airfield (I
the day and night saying “Good Bye” and opening           & I, 2nd Beach & Terminal Battalion), held their
our arms to say “Welcome Home” to the troops as           Marine Corps Birthday Celebration. To be precise
they go and come to and from the Middle East. As          there were some 35 of our members that wined,
we look into their faces, the greater majority have       dined and danced along side the many YOUNG
smiles, willing to go while some are somber with          Marines for this special celebration.
facing the unknown as they leave their families and          Of course, it must be noted that the 233rd
friends behind.          Our mission… to give             Anniversary of The United States Marine Corps,
encouragement and support as the majority of our          was also celebrated at the Plantation Club
group went off to Korea and Vietnam and yet with          November 7, 2008, hosted by a group of former
much pray and support from the home front we              Marines that reside at this gated community, “The
came home, but are able to offer that word of             Landings”. It was not just any celebration, but was
confidence. So, as they board the plane, loaded           graced by the presence of our own, U. S Marine
with equipment and their weapon on their back we          Commandant, James T. Conway and his lovely
give them an American Flag to remind their we are         wife, Annette. There were several members of the
here and will be here when they return. Many that         Detachment 564 that were invited guests and were
return, we too find ourselves hugging and                 pleased to have had a time to engage in
reminding that we “told you” we would be here             conversation with the General and his wife recalling
when you returned….”Welcome Home, soldier”!               war stories.
   Not only do our members serve at HAAF, but                November 10th, the detachment held its own
every Tuesday of the month there is a group that          celebration by hosting a breakfast for all Marines
mans a station, sponsored by the USO at the               and any veteran that may want to celebrate this
anniversary. Following the breakfast, the group         spots just as they encountered. As a result, new
made its way to Forsyth Park, where a Marine            memberships were gained in the league.
Monument has been erected and is inscribed with            December finds us in the readying stage for the
the names of those from Savannah that paid the          2 largest celebration to be held March 17, 2009,
ultimate sacrifice for a memorial service. As tribute   Savannah’s own St. Patrick’s Day Parade. Again,
was paid, the names of those etched in the granite      exhibiting the same unites that were involved in the
were call and a moment of silence was held in their     Veteran’s Day Parade. We look forward to the
honor.                                                  event and will keep you informed in our next letter
  And we are not finished yet, November 11,             to you.
Veteran’s Day, the detachment participated in the          We may be aging, but we are still…
parade with three unites; a replica of a Higgins                    ”The Few, The Proud, the Marines”
Landing Craft that was constructed by the unit, a             Semper Fi, B. G. “Bubba” Tedder, Adjutant
silhouette of Iwo Jima and a refurbished 1942
Marine Jeep that bears the identification numbers
of a former member, Gordon “Sonny” Nelson.                      Greater Atlanta Det. # 647
Sonny was in the Korean War and was wounded                                   Marietta
twice. The jeep bears the numbers of that jeep in                         “NO REPORT”
which he was riding when taking on enemy fire.
Sonny lost his battle with cancer, July 25, 2008.
However, his memory still remains with our group            Upper Chattahoochee Det. #665
today.                                                               Gainesville
  As always, our detachment participated in the         The Upper Chattahoochee Detachment had a very good
Veteran’s Day Banquet, hosted by the Chatham            Toys for Tots drive this past Christmas. What started out
County Veterans Council in which several of our         dismal turned out fortunate for many families in our area.
group are members. In preparing for the parade,         Thousands of toys were collected and distributed to
the council asks each military group that is an         families through churches and our members. We
active member of the council to nominate someone        are presently going through our election of officers
from their organization to be considered as the         for the year, names and their positions will be
“Veteran of The Year”. In keeping with tradition,       posted at a later date.
Savannah Detachment 564 placed Donald Kent
Shockey’s name as their nominee for that honor.         Stan Linder, our Senior Vice has just undergone a
Kent is a retired colonel for some 20 plus years in     serious operation, I'm happy to report he is now
the corps.                                              home recuperating, it will be awhile before he is
  In order to place a person’s name into                able to be out and about.
nomination, a resume must be submitted to the           The Detachment meetings are the first Thursday of
council committee in order to be considered. Due        the month and are held at the VFW in Gainesville at
the Kent’s many activities that he participated, it     1900 sharp, come on by and pay us a visit. We’re
was not a difficult task. It was an honor to submit     looking forward to seeing everyone at the S.E.
six pages plus listing his many accomplishments         Conference in Tenn. next month.
during his duties while serving in the U. S. Marines                          Wally Calderon, Commandant
and after retirement. With great honor, Kent was
elected and is serving as -the 2009 “Veteran of the
Year” for Savannah-Chatham County, representing                          UNICOI Det. 783
the league very well as well as the many veterans                          Hiawassee
in the county.                                          Unicoi Detachment Commandant’s third quarter
  November 13, some 40 Marines reservists that          report for Year 2008/2009
had been placed on active status, but returned from     December: Unicoi had to cancel their December
a 15 month tour of duty in Iraq were honored by the     meeting because there was a military funeral that
detachment with a steak dinner. It pleased the          day. All the elected officers and one appointed
young guys to have an opportunity to engage in          officer is part of the North Georgia Honor Guard.
conversation with those who have been in tough          That left no officers to conduct a meeting and since
                                                 The Georgia Black Sheep participated in the Helen
it was too close to the holidays there was no time to
reschedule.                                      Christmas Parade with our award winning float,
January-February: We held our January and while it was cold indeed, the Iwo-Jima
February meetings on Sunday afternoon. We had Reenactment float continues to be well received…
moved these meetings to Sunday afternoon
because of the uncertainty of weather conditions
affecting safe driving. These have been the most
attended meetings in several years.
Upcoming Events:
The March meeting will move back to the third
Monday at 1900 hours at the VFW Post in
The April Meeting will be a regular meeting and a
picnic with spouses and friends attending. It will be
held on Sunday 19 April at 1400 hours at the home
of member Lois Horne in Hiawassee.
       Semper Fidelis! Walt Scott, Commandant

LtCol Jimmie Dyess Detachment # 921
The LtCol Jimmie Dyess Detachment's main effort
has been focused on recruiting new members. We
had four new members join in the past four months.
The detachment was also heavily involved in the         During toys for tots drive, thousands of toys and
Toys for Tots program. We worked with the               dollars were collected and distributed. Our next
Riverfront Detachment (North Augusta SC) and the        Toys for Tots meeting is in March, where we hope
Augusta Marine Corps Reserves. We broke the             to name a new coordinator. One of our newest
record that was set last year by raising $27,010.87     members is in local law enforcement and is an
in cash donations and 2079 assorted toys. The           active drilling reservist in Marietta. He is also a
detachment volunteered 35 hours to the Toys for         veteran of the war in Iraq. We hope to begin better
Tots drive this year.                                   coordination of efforts with our toys for tots
The detachment also presented the trophy to the         program, making a great program even better.
winner of the JROTC Army/Navy Flag football             The Georgia Black Sheep “Marine in Need”
game held on December 6th at Ft Gordon.                 program gave over 600 dollars to a local Marine In
The detachment officers are as listed below:            Need. A veteran of Iraq and Afghanistan seems to
                                                        be suffering from a relapse possibly related to the
Commandant:             Don Murray                      IED that resulted in wounds to his head and a
Jr Vice Commandant:     Ray Schneider                   purple heart on his chest. While the VA and Emory
Jr Past Commandant:     Michael Shook                   continue to treat the Marine, he is on disability from
Adjutant:               Al McKee                        the local police department. We are hopeful that
Pay Master:             Karenann Amster                 he may return to “light duty” as soon as a month
Sgt of Arms:            Jack Stoner                     from now. We continue to monitor his financial
Chaplain:               Rev. Gregory Francisco          needs and will do more as needed.
                    By Don Murray, Commandant           The Georgia Black Sheep Detachment has nine
                                                        new members this quarter. Our newest member
     Georgia Black Sheep Det. #952                      was discharged over forty years ago, and still has
                      Duluth                            his original documents from separation! He was
                                                        sworn in with a young reservist.
The National Fourth of July Parade Committee             collect $12,692, and 7226 toys. The number of
has forwarded a request for our Detachment to            children receiving toys was 2,552. This would
participate again in our Nations Parade in               amount to about two toys per child. BRAVO
Washington, D.C. and we look forward to returning.       ZULU JIM!
We are hopeful that other Detachments will join us     At the next meeting the league is schedule to have
this year. During our inaugural appearance last        a representative from the VA hospital in Dublin
July, we were the only Marine Corps League Entry.      come in and give us information on the new clinic
We have begun making initial preparations for our      which is going to be located in Brunswick. She will
return.                                                answer questions for anyone that may have them.

The Georgia Black Sheep Detachment #952 held                             By Tito Ramirez, Commandant
annual elections and elected the following slate for
    Commandant –            Jeff Covert                   MIDDLE GEORGIA DETACHMENT #970
    Sr. Vice Commandant -   Tony Tijerina                                    MACON
    Jr. Vice Commandant –   Lori Dashiel              Middle Georgia Detachment #970 enjoyed having a
    Judge Advocate –        Bill Gray                 successful “Toys for Tots “campaign for 2008 by
    Adjutant-Paymaster      Trina Worthington         passing out more toys than in 2007. The chilly
The new slate of officers intends to triple delivery helped improve everyone’s Christmas
membership during this year. We are off to a good spirit. The economy may pinch, but there isn’t
start and have made plans that will focus on anything determined Marines and a community
membership and fund raising efforts. We are willing to share can’t accomplish.
committed to doing a few things well, and restricting The Detachment Color Guard and Honor Guard
growth of our programs commensurate to our were very actively employed during the period
membership resources.                                 around Veteran’s Day.          We feel honored to
                         Jeff Covert, Commandant      participate in the salute to our veterans.
                                                      All Hands enjoyed our Christmas Party and
                                                      Installation Banquet. Now the new slate of officers
              Glynco Det. #716                        put their shoulders to the task of preparing for an
                   Brunswick                          enjoyable and successful 2009 by pushing together
  Our final celebration for 2008 was our              rather that pulling in 365 directions.
  Christmas party. As all other events it was a           Semper Fi, G. V. GERBERT, Commandant
  great success. Several members of the league
  attended the party and enjoyed an evening of
  telling old Sea Stories and tails of different              “Jake” Puryear Det. # 1020
  experiences in the service. Part way into the                                Rome
  evening the members awarded Commandant
  Tito Ramirez a plaque for his dedication and        Our Detachment meets the 2nd Saturday of the
  service to the Marine Corps League. All             month at the Rome-Floyd County Library; Riverside
  members went home with a Christmas Gift             Parkway, Rome, Georgia.
  from the Commandant.                                New officers for the year 2009 are as follows:
                                                      Commandant               Dick Richter
  At the January regular meeting the League           Sr. Vice                 Vern Miller
  recognized two life time members. Roy Green,        Jr. Vice                 O. G. Morehead
  a WW II Veteran who served in Tarawa, and           Judge Advocate           Jack Ballard
  Iwo. The other was Robert Tyrer, who served
  in Viet Nam. Nice going guys. The League            Our Detachment’s record of activity for this quarter:
  presented Jim Cook, with a Plaque for the           At our Installation Banquet, awards were given to
  outstanding job he did when he filled in for WO     Marine Corps League members for their service
  3 Dempsey (who is serving in Iraq) as the           during the year. James Moore was given the
  Toys for Tots representative for the Southeast      Marine of the Year for his untiring dedication and
  area of Georgia. The final tally for Jim was;       leadership of the Young Marines. The active duty
Marines, and Reservists as well as civilian
volunteers, who helped with the program received               PFC George Eiland Det. #1040
Meritorious Service Certificates also, at their own                          LaGrange
Our Fallen Marine Program Chairman, Ron
Johnson, reported our detachment has attended
over 24 funerals of deceased Marines during the
past year. “Certificates of Service and the
appropriate lady’s pin or man’s pin were presented
to survivors.”
Our Marine Corps League had a great turnout for
“Toys for Tots.” This is most likely the last time the
I&I Staff and Reservists will be here to help with this
project as the Amory has been slated to close for
some time now.
The 64th Anniversary Reunion of Iwo Jima
Veterans will be held in Cartersville, Georgia,
Thursday February 19th at the Quality Inn on
                                                     The PFC George Eiland Detachment #1040 voted
Highway 41 South. The Commandant of the Marine
                                                     to design, fabricate and erect signs at the four main
Corps will be sending a General to represent him
                                                     highways into our city to notify motorists of our
since he is unable to attend this event.
                                                     existence and to inform prospective members of
           Semper Fi, Dick Richter, Commandant our meeting date each month. These signs were
                                                     installed at no charge by the City of LaGrange and
                                                     are located adjacent to others for civic clubs and
      ROME GEORGIA YOUNG MARINES                     organizations. The magnetic MCL signs were
During 2008, our detachment established The permanently adhered to a heavy, white, aluminum
Greater Rome Georgia Young Marine Program. A backing plate. The lettering was then installed by a
great deal of planning and hard work went in to this local sign shop using long-lasting vinyl letters. The
outstanding program.                                 finished product is an eye-catcher!
Marine James Moore and his cadre did an                   We believe that this is a good way to keep the
outstanding job developing, organizing and                Marine Corps League logo visible and show our
implementing the program. The entire detachment           community that we are active. We continue to work
congratulates each of our Young Marine Staff for a        on membership and meeting attendance, both of
Job Well Done!                                            which are full-time jobs.
                                                                    Semper Fi, Bill Newman, Commandant

                                                           Sgt/Maj Louis Roundtree Det. #1048
                                                                            East Point
                                                One of the features in the most current edition (Jan
                                                Feb ‘09) of Semper Fi showed the special
                                                presentation to Mrs. William Hall and family. He
The Greater Rome Georgia Young Marines thank
                                                was a former member of Sgt/Maj Louis Roundtree
each of you for your support! And, we are PROUD
                                                Detachment #1048 and was KIA in Iraq during the
that our leader, Marine James Moore, was
                                                spring of 2008. We worked through Commandant
selected as the 2008 Detachment Marine of the
                                                Don Pechous, Det #1057, Murietta, Calif. who
                                                presented our Fallen Marine Certificate to the Hall
         By Dick Richter, Det. 1020 Commandant family.
Over the Christmas period the Detachment sent            are currently making the rounds with Certificates of
donations of toys to the Loynes children in Marietta.    Recognition for the corporate participants and will
Their mother was accidentally shot to death in her       continue throughout January.
home while spending quality time with the family.   Marine Chet Mingledorf returned to the US from
(Shooters were captured)                            his mobilization to OIF just prior to Christmas and
Over the 2008 Christmas period the Detachment his daughter is readying to deploy to OEF shortly.
made a contribution to the fund to help a L/Cpl who To Chet we say “Well Done!” and to his daughter
had lost his job and income. He and his family were we wish “God Speed.”
living in substandard conditions.
The Detachment recently agreed to support,                 General Ray Davis MOH Det. #1188
financially and otherwise, The South Fulton                                  Covington
Young Marines, training at the First Victory Baptist                     “NO REPORT”
church, College Park. They are currently signing up
young male and female members of the church with
training to start the second week of February.
                                                            Maj. Stephen W. Pless Det. # 1196
Recruiting of new members for Sgt/Maj Louis
Roundtree Det #1048 will be one of our major                             “NO REPORT”
objectives throughout 2009.
                 By Robert Mullins, Commandant                       Kings Bay Det. #1229
                                                                              St. Mary
      Joseph Schmittou Det. #1083                        We have had a very successful Toy for Tots Drive
                      Athens                             with a smooth distribution day all to the credit of
                                                         Regie Walters our coordinator.
We have been busy since the last newsletter. We
were proud to recognize the accomplishments of Robert Shad has had heart problems and is
five Eagle Scouts with the awarding of five Good recovering slowly at home.
Citizenship Eagle Scout Certificates.                  Elections of new officers:
We have continued to send Operation “Support-A- Commandant                         Frank Fornili
Hero” boxes, now having sent in excess of 463 Sr. Vice Commandant                  Jerry Hitchcock
packages to the troops “serving in harms way.”         Jr. Vice Commandant         James Dumas
                                                       Judge Advocate              Reggie Walters
Our Toys for Tots Campaign for 2008 was very Adjutant                              Robert Wallace
successful. Adjutant Ray Fairman was inducted Paymaster                            Carol Segovia
into “The Chapel of the Four Chaplains” “Legion Chaplain                           Troy Wise
Of Honor” for his many humanitarian activities, Sgt. at Arms                       Tommy Silcox
including his annual immersion in our local Toys for Public Relations Officer      Bill Lynne
Tots project. This year his personal collection effort Web Sergeant                Robert Wallace
was responsible for over 9000 toys and $3,500.00
of the total of 45,000 toys and $10,000.00 that was We are currently working on our fundraiser.
marshaled in our Area Of Operations.                                    By Frank Fornili, Commandant
This year’s Campaign effort required Ray and the
local Active Duty USMC Coordinator Master                Maj. Lawrence Desjardines det. 1260
Sergeant Anthony Rendon to extend the                                          Albany
campaign 5 extra days and run a shortage media                           “NO REPORT”
blitz which resulted in over 20 thousand toys
donated during the extension period of the               North Georgia Mountains Det. # 1280
remaining 10 days before Christmas.
Ray and M/Sgt Rendon worked 12-14 hour days
during the campaign which began with box                 Our detachment held a party on the evening of Jan.
distribution prior to Thanksgiving and it finally came   17th at the Sharptop Grill in Jasper to celebrate the
to a successful completion in mid January. They          holidays. Although it was snowing, we still had a
good turnout. We enjoyed the evening so much                  Dalton Detachment #1309
that we intend to repeat it as soon as possible.                             Dalton
During the Toys for Tots drive, the Detachment                           “NO REPORT”
collected 3,935 toys and distributed 3,580 toys to
1,186 children. This represents a lot of time and            Woodstock Detachment # 1311
effort by the Detachment. Tom Connolly and
Richard Wilson worked tirelessly to make this
worthy program a success.                             The Woodstock Detachment began forming in May,
                                                      2008 and the Detachment was presented their
The Detachment is currently planning future fund
                                                      National Charter at a formal ceremony on
                                                      September 21st, 2008.
                              By Kenneth Bramlett
                                                         Following the Charter Ceremony, the Leagues
                                                      first official function was on November 10th, the
       Currahee MOUNTAIN Det. 1303                    233rd Birthday of the United States Marine Corps.
                      Toccoa                          The traditional Birthday Cake Cutting Ceremony
Here is an update on what is happening at event was attended by over 70 people coming
Currahee Mt. Det. 1303 here in Toccoa.                together to celebrate the Birthday of the Corps and
Newly elected officers:                               enjoy the camaraderie with Detachment Marine
    Commandant -             Richard Hack             Veterans, Associate Members, families and friends
     Sr. Vice Commandant - Larry Goodman              of the Corps.
     Jr. Vice Commandant - Barry Mayer                   In late November and December, the Detachment
     Judge Advocate -        James Davis              assisted in the Marine Corps Reserve Toys for Tots
     Appointed:                                       program by placing collection containers at various
     Adjutant -              Don Alexander            business locations throughout the Woodstock area.
     Paymaster (Interim) - Duane Goding               Detachment volunteers collected the donated toys
     Chaplain -              Richard Crumley          and transported them to a central collection facility
     Sgt At Arms -           Duane Goding             for later pick up by Marine Corps Reserve
Toys for Tots went well. We were able to give out     members.
Christmas bags to over 600 kids. We are running          In December Detachment members participated
 about a 50% attendance at our meetings.              in the Annual Christmas Wreath Laying at the
At our January meeting it was voted to utilize the National Cemetery in Canton, Georgia.
"Calling Post" Telephone Notification System. We         The Detachment is preparing an ambitious
got the idea from our members who are members         calendar of events for 2009, which includes but is
of the Toccoa American Legion. There are various not limited to; assembling and mailing of care
plans you can select and we selected the plan packages to deployed Marines in Iraq and
which gives us 200 phone calls for $23.95. With a Afghanistan; supporting of local Boy Scouts and
roster of 22 members that allows us about eight JROTC units; Young Marines Program; visiting
months of calls for this price. If any other shut-in Marines and Marine Veterans at the VA
detachment would be interested in this program hospital;             participation  in  Memorial     Day,
they can go on line to "Calling". It works   Independence Day and Veterans Day celebrations
real well and I recommend it.                         as well as other community functions. To support
At our February meeting we had as a guest, Army the Detachments various endeavors, fund raisers
Lt. Col. Barker from the Stephens County High such as a golf tournament and silent auction are
School. He has just come on board the school as being considered.
the CO of the Jr ROTC and they already have 53                             By John Newport, Commandant
cadets. We voted to support
If you have any questions, feel free to contact me at
706-297-7427 (h) or 706-491-9310 (c).
                                                          Aubrey Gilbert Detachment #1312
Respectfully Submitted, Don Alexander, Adjutant
                                                                       “NO REPORT”
                 By Hal Gosnell                      Your Commandant and I attended the Department
Membership                                           of Alabama Convention in early June. They, too,
                                                     are a great group of Marines, and they, too, are
The official report from National, showing
                                                     trying to spread the word about the League around
Detachment and Department membership as of 31
                                                     their state. In addition to inviting them to our
December is in. Here is a summary of the
                                                     Convention in Albany in May, we have jointly
Department Membership:
                                                     agreed to have a challenge award for the
                         Total   Total
                                                     Department with the greatest membership growth
      As of:             Paid    Unpaid
                                                     (Paid Members, percentage-wise growth, as of
        12/31/2007       828     119
                                                     03/31 National Report) for the previous year. This
        03/31/2008       841     114
                                                     award, entitled “THE GRITS BOWL”, will be
        06/30/2008       874     124
                                                     presented to the winning Department by the losing
        09/30/2008       934     121
                                                     Department Commandant at the winner's
        12/31/2008       964     127
                                                     Department Convention. Alabama is trying to
The good news: The Department is up 16.4% over       double their membership. So, if you want to protect
the same time last year and 14.6% over the March     your status as a winner and keep your Department
31st level. The Department added 30 new members      Commandant from being embarrassed, actively
without adding any new Detachments, which is         seek out Marines and FMF Corpsmen who are not
great! In fact, for the last quarter, 14 of our 21   already members of the League and bring them into
Detachments had a new add of paid members, one       the fold.
was the same, and only six showed a decline. Way
                                                     Burkhardt Award
to go, Department!
                                                     Here are the standings for the 18 Detachments
We still have a high number of unpaid
                                                     eligible to compete for the Burkhardt Award. These
members. Over half of those unpaid members (68)
                                                     standings reflect the changes from the March 31 to
are from four Detachments.          All Detachment
                                                     December 31 National Reports.
Commandants and Junior Vice's are requested
to contact those whose membership has lapsed                                      Percentage
and get them back into the fold. If we could have       Detachment                Growth/Loss
recovered just 36 of them, then we would had 1,000      Upper Chattahoochee       66.67%
members in the Department at the end of 2008.           Glynco                    29.41%
New Detachments                                         LtCol Jimmie Dyess        20.00%
                                                        Maj. L DesJardines        16.13%
In January, an Application for a Charter was
                                                        "Jake" Puryear               2.42%
received from 26 Marines in the Fayette and
                                                        Maj Stephen Pless            1.52%
Coweta Counties area. This Detachment has
                                                        Greater Atlanta              0.00%
requested to be named the Clyde Thomason
                                                        Eiland                       0.00%
Detachment. Sgt. Clyde Thomason was with
                                                        Georgia Black Sheep          0.00%
Carlson's Raiders (2nd Raider Battalion) on the
                                                        Sgt/Maj Louis Roundtree      0.00%
Makin Island Raid and was posthumously awarded
                                                        Gen Ray Davis MOH            0.00%
the Medal of Honor for his actions there. An
                                                        Savannah                    -1.39%
Atlanta native, he was the first enlisted Marine
                                                        Middle Georgia              -1.89%
to receive the Medal of Honor in WW II. The
                                                        Unicoi                      -3.77%
chartering is in process at National.
                                                        Schmittou                   -9.18%
We are still working on several other areas in the      Kings Bay                  -14.29%
state and hope that two to four more will have their    North GA Mountain          -15.15%
Charter Applications submitted in time to join us at
                                                     By the time you receive this newsletter, there will
the Department Convention in Albany on 15 – 17
                                                     only be about 6 weeks to boost your numbers. The
May 2009.
                                                     quickest way is to convert those “unpaid” into
CHaPLaIN’s COrNer:                                    who have earned these benefits sends a clear
                  Death Notices- 2008                 message that we honor and respect their service
                                                      and sacrifice to country,” said Rep. Chet Edwards,
                  The following names are for the
                                                      D-Texas, chairman of the House Appropriations
                  year of 2008. If some marines in
                                                      Military Construction, Veterans Affairs and Related
                  your Detachment have received
                                                      Agencies Subcommittee. “This needed expansion
                  their final roll call and are not
                                                      of VA benefits to middle income veterans is just one
                  listed,    this     means      your
                                                      example of how millions of veterans will benefit
                  Detachment Chaplain did not
                                                      from the historic funding increases of the last two
                  send me the proper forms.
Our Final Taps honors these Marines:                    New Priority 8 veterans were blocked from
                                                      enrolling for VA benefits in JAN 03 if their income
Duross Fitzpatrick     1-06-08      Middle Georgia
                                                      exceeded approximately $30,000 annually. Priority
Lee B. Mowry, Jr.      1-13-08      Jake Puryear      8 veterans who were already enrolled in the system
Grady Martin           1-22-08      Middle Georgia    before JAN 03 were allowed to remain in the
                                                      system. The VA told members of the subcommittee
Clifford Watts         2-06-08      Middle Georgia
                                                      5 JAN that funding will be formally disbursed to VA
Ray L. Cape            2-16-08      Jake Puryear      hospitals and clinics later this month in order to
Frederick L. Merritt 3-01-08        Jake Puryear      implement the new enrollment plan by June. In the
                                                      meantime, the VA will work with the Office of
Troy Lee               4-03-08      Kings Bay
                                                      Management and Budget to author new regulatory
George W. Crider       5-22-08      Jake Puryear      authority and propose it as a rule in the Federal
Gordon W Nelson, Jr. 7-25-08 Savannah                 Register. As the regulatory authority is developed,
                                                      the VA’s enrollment system will be modified to allow
Michael J. Huff        8-27-08      Unicoi
                                                      enrollment for veterans whose income exceeds the
Gene Gustad            8-31-08      Jake Puryear      current threshold by 10% or less. Returning
Frank Near             9-01-08      Jake Puryear      eligibility to Priority 8 veterans has been a priority
                                                      for a number of high profile members of Congress,
David H. Cox          10-31-08      Jake Puryear
                                                      including Edwards and House Veterans’ Affairs
Charles B Place, Jr. 11-05-08       Middle Georgia    Committee Chairman Bob Filner, D-Calif.
James Sprouse         11-09-08      Aubrey Gilbert    President-elect Barack Obama also pledged during
                                                      his campaign to return eligibility to all Priority 8
Marvin R. Gandy, Jr. 11-21-08       Savannah
  Rev. Dalton L. Hammock, Dept. of GA Chaplain          The new income thresholds will range from
                                                      $32,342 for an unmarried veteran and adding
                                                      $2,222 for each dependent. Geographic income
        By Gary Locke, Veteran’s Service Officer
                                                      ceilings also will rise. Vets meeting these income
House appropriators were buoyed by a Veterans parameters 2008 incomes will be able to enroll in
Affairs Department briefing that outlined how fiscal VA health care when revised regulations take effect
2009 funding will be used to enroll about 265,000 sometime before 30 JUN. Veterans who applied for
vets who have been denied VA health services VA enrollment on or after Jan. 1 this year, and were
since 2003. A $375 million provision was included rejected as Priority 8 veterans, need not reapply.
in the fiscal 2009 VA spending bill measure (PL Their applications, which already show their 2008
110-329) to allow the department to bring into the incomes, will be reconsidered and, if they fall under
system more “Priority 8” veterans — those who new higher thresholds, enrollment will be approved.
typically earn more than $30,000 a year. The Applicants denied enrollment for having Priority 8
funding aims to expand the enrollment of Priority 8 income before 2009 will have to reapply because
veterans by 10%. Priority 8 refers to a subcategory VA needs to see income information for 2008. More
of veterans who can receive VA health care in details on enrollment eligibility expansion are
exchange for modest co-payments, and also available online at by
valuable    discounts on prescription drugs. calling 1-877-222 VETS (8387).
“Reopening the doors of the VA system to veterans