The Sound of Freedom

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The Sound of Freedom
Dispatches from the War on Terrorism
By P. T. Brent, 6/25/2004 7:55:02 AM

The Marine choppers, air force C 5’s C 17’s and C 130’s were taking off last night when I recorded this report. The sounds are deafening from a tent alongside the runways at Baghdad International Airport temporary airbase of the “CPA. The” people at the Coalition Provisional Authority military call it “BIAP” (bee – op). As one Marine, a Texan once said: “be happy, that is the sound of freedom you are hearing.” Continue reading

The Japanese Alamo

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The Japanese Alamo
Combat Notebook: Dispatches from the War on Terrorism
By P. T. Brent, 7/2/2004 9:00:33 AM

Iwo Jima – Marine and Navy pilots, 59 years ago, called it “a charred pork chop.” From the sky in a Marine Corsair this sulfuric volcanic island is dramatically different from what was experienced by Marine infantry on these black coral beaches. The 3rd, 4th, & 5th Marine Divisions encountered horrific casualties when attacking this now legendary rock. A miniscule island comprised of only seven and one half square miles, it was smaller than Santa Monica, California. A task force of 495 ships gathered, more than our current Navy now has in totality, assembled off shore awaiting orders to “land the landing force.” Continue reading

The Horn of Africa

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The Horn of Africa
Dispatches from the War on Terrorism
By P. T. Brent, 7/30/2004 10:54:56 AM

DATELINE DJIBOUTI U.S. Forces – A Jeep bus driven wildly careens around a corner and the side mirror whacks the head of a local man, he drops, apparently dead. Djiboutians take little notice. Life is cheap is this lawless land. Continue reading

The Grey Ghost

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The Grey Ghost
Dispatches from the War on Terrorism
By P. T. Brent, 9/24/2004 12:49:21 AM

“We have done so much with so little, for so long; we now feel we can do everything with nothing.” Ref: USMC’s tight budget (Col. J.R. Bates, USMC)
While Corporate America is jetting from one mega deal to the next board meeting, The U.S. Marines have adopted the Corporate Jet into the war on terrorism. Considerably a leaner & meaner model, the Marines have taken a tornado damaged G4 and for a third the cost of the new executive version converted it into a working member of the Corps’ air power. This G4 based in Hawaii has none of the luxurious amenities of its counterparts. Marines have pallets of supplies and gear aboard and communication systems for war fighting. No luxuries, they even bring their own personal water and chow. The pace aboard is 24/7 and would wear out the toughest of Fortune Five Hundred executives. They land in far off climes and exit with helmets, flak jackets, and weapons at the ready. All this capability is at a fraction of the cost of a Corporate G4 model. The Grey Ghost bears little resemblance to the famous civil war general John Mosley. Continue reading

Beans, Bullets and Bandages and the Red Ball Express

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Beans, Bullets and Bandages and the Red Ball Express
Dispatches from the War on Terrorism
By P. T. Brent, 9/17/2004 9:24:25 AM

In WWII the army was re-supplied by the “Red Ball Express” a euphemism for a transportation convoy company that kept the troops supplied with the essentials to life in combat, such as beans, bullets and bandages. Continue reading

Interview with U.S. Marine General Jerry McAbee

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Interview with U.S. Marine General Jerry McAbee
Combat Notebook: Dispatches from the War on Terrorism
By P. T. Brent, 5/28/2004 11:38:04 AM

“For those who have fought for it, life has a special flavor the protected will never know”
A few words written by an anonymous Marine, taken from a now famous combat ration box in Vietnam …. and now echoed by the U.S. Marines in Afghanistan fighting a global war on terrorism. We are visiting the Marines arriving in AFG theater (Marine Expeditionary Unit) comprised of a fleet of Navy ships, aircraft, and a battalion over 1,000 U.S. Marines. Continue reading

Atrocities Incredulous

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Atrocities Incredulous
Dispatches from the War on Terrorism
By P. T. Brent, 8/13/2004 12:01:14 AM

One Navy Corpsman said he cannot understand the coalition forces standard of: “Shock and Awe.” He stated that since we were kids the good guys always gave the other guys a chance to drop their guns and raise their hands. Why … why this display of might in Baghdad? All over the world a minority, albeit vocal group, are creating discord over “Bush’s war.” Perhaps they have a point. Clearly, in retrospect the Vietnam protestors were on target with their cry of an unjust war. Continue reading

Our Texas Air Force

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Our Texas Air Force
Combat Notebook: Dispatches from the War on Terrorism
By P. T. Brent, 5/21/2004 1:39:22 AM

Ground control to U.S. Air Force Hercules C 130

Sir: Condition Red … the field is under attack again

Ground control: Advise taxi to bunker and evacuate the aircraft.

tex-air-forceCaptain: Request 14 right for take off

Tower: alfa, bravo, delta and fox trot sectors all under fire.

Co Pilot…. Sir, tracer rounds at delta end of field Continue reading

Iwo Jima Revisited on 60th Anniversary

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Iwo Jima Revisited on 60th Anniversary
By P. T. Brent, 4/6/2005 9:45:20 PM
Dateline: Iwo Jima, Japan 11 March 2005
Sixty years has done little to diminish the visceral memories of both the Japanese and U.S. Marine survivors visiting for this 60th anniversary of the battle to the few living survivors. It is the last journey for many of these brave Marines who traveled far and long to have one last look on a battlefield, which has not changed since 1945. The rusted detritus of a violence, tanks, cannons, mortars, bayonets and personal effects still stand silent sentinels, untouched by time, to one of war’s most horrific battle sites. Continue reading

Interview with a Maui Marine

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Interview with Maui Marine Ernest Hoopii
Combat Notebook: Dispatches from the War on Terrorism
By P. T. Brent, 6/3/2004 12:50:44 AM

Afghanistan … Meet First Sergeant Ernest Hoopii United States Marine Corps, a career Marine from Maui. Back during high school years on Oahu, his pals at Mid Pacific use to call him “ Hoop” as he demonstrated his athletic prowess at volley ball, track, and of course hoops. Continue reading

The D o g g o n e Marine Corps

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The D o g g o n e Marine Corps
Combat Notebook: Dispatches from the War on Terrorism
By P. T. Brent, 5/24/2004 8:04:19 AM
And a Gyrene from Grand Rapids ….

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CChyna, bred by the corps — tattoo Delta-043, is the pride of the expanding Marine Corps dog tracker and security units … MWD Marine War Dog. Perhaps named after the legendary fourth Marines of Shanghai fame or she is just a close working pal with Marine Sergeant Dan Wheeler. CChyna has been busy from Cuba to Iraq. Trained to go ahead of Marines and sniff out explosives and hidden snipers or terrorists. This canine leatherneck knows her stuff. In Cuba CChyna was used for mind deterrent with Afghan detainees. After healing from a broken foot CChyna is now with his master Dan in red hot Fallujah to sniff out IED’s (improvised explosive devices) in Iraq. Born 12Sept 99 dual trained for aggression and bomb detection, CChyna is a Belgian Malau. Continue reading

Haze Grey and Underway

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Haze Gray and Underway on the Good Ship Russell
A Firsthand Experience on the Battle Ready U.S.S. Russell
By Patrick Brent, 2/20/2007 1:45:00 PM

I had the opportunity recently to serve as an embedded journalist aboard the battle-ready U.S.S. RUSSELL, a Navy high-speed vessel (speed classified) named after the 16th Commandant of the Marine Corps and Major General Russell.
A few years back, Admiral Walt Doren’s aide Commander Brad Cooper decided that when the he secured a command at sea, I would be a lucky guest aboard. Most people might not get such a chance in their lifetime, so I thought I’d share a little of what life is like for these dedicated men and women in the U.S. Navy. Continue reading

IT’S LUH JERN Marine !

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IT’S LUH JERN Marine !

OOO RRAH to Marine Walter for compiling this rapid fire  respecting the Lejeune / luh jern family’s awesome name.- some compelling facts….   & bravo zulu’s to  J. R. Bates, George Barrows, Ralph Bates & many others

Preface:

The Lejeune / luh jern family would like respect & honor returned to the General’s great name. Herein for your review is the gouge, substantiating that we have a generation who have been, sadly,  off target …. it is remedial action time as well as time to honor and respect one outstanding leatherneck…  please pass the word…the Lejeune / luh jern family love it. Continue reading

Wake Island

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I M A G I N E:

A time machine transporting you back into 1941!

First stop – Wake Island 19° 18′ 0″ N, 166° 38′ 0″ E – a tiny coral atoll 2300 miles west of Hawaii named after Captain William Wake from the British Empire. You are aboard a Pan Am Clipper ship – the sun is shining on the 130-foot wingspan – call sign the “China Clipper”. ( A Martin Aircraft M-130) Continue reading

Hawaii Newspaper Columnist Eddie Sherman Dies at 89

Hawaii Newspaper Columnist Eddie Sherman Dies at 89

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Eddie Sherman

Editor’s note: Well-known Hawaii newspaper columnist Eddie Sherman died Tuesday night. Sherman, who was born on February 22, 1924, worked for a number of news organizations including MidWeek Publications and Honolulu Advertiser. A friend of his, Patrick Brent, wrote this story after learning Sherman had died Tuesday.

BY PT BRENT – If ever there was import from that big island called America, who earned his “kama’aina” stripes, it would Mr. Eddie Sherman.

Since 1956, Eddie has been one of the premier journalists in Hawaii – clearly of the same caliber as New York’s Walter Winchell and the other mainland greats.

He was known as the Dean of Honolulu journalists writing for the Honolulu Advertiser and in later years for MidWeek Magazine. He set the bar for three-dot journalism.

Think about the “dash” between Eddie’s 89 years: 1924-2013.  That dash kicks off at a boy’s orphanage in Boston, enlists in the U.S. Coast Guard and travels to our beautiful islands on December 7, 1941, in time to help rebuild the Navy’s broken fleet at their Pearl Harbor shipyard.

Eddie moved on to be radio announcer, journalist, comedian, entertainer, and TV star (a Hawaii 5-0 original), Most of all, he became the beloved husband of Patty Sherman… and he always said: “I married UP”

Eddie’s spirit lives on in his many written works. Eddie’s book “Frank, Sammy, Marlon & Me” is a must read classic.

Eddie as a journalist met and befriended countless celebrities from John Wayne to Frank Sinatra and from Marlon Brando to Jim Nabors – all considered Eddie to be more than a news reporter. Simply stated they just like being with him.

Eddie had that gift that made people comfortable. They trusted him with their stories.  To most celebrities, Eddie was “Mister Hawaii”, he owned the heartbeat and the tempo of the islands.

Sharing this with our most well known stars from Elvis Presley to Bob Hope and from Sophia Loren to Don Ho.

He wrote only positive press and took umbrage with any attempts to alter that policy… ask his editors.

Eddie leaves behind much more than his many columns … the legacy he really leaves behind is woven into the fabric and the lives of the countless people that he touched.  They all feel special… this author does.

He was a dot dot dot one-of-a-kind treasure.  Now Eddie is busy sharing his sparkling stories with Sinatra and Brando –  upstairs.

 

P.T. Brent is a Hawaii resident who calls himself  “an Eddie …  Sherman protégé’”

 

Fort Apache, Afghanistan

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F O R T    A P A C H E    AFGHANISTAN by P.T. Brent 15 August 2012

In the past few days our Corps lost six Marines in Afghanistan – scant news coverage – what is the matter with us?

“Any future defense secretary who advises the president to again send a big American land army into Asia or into the Middle East or Africa should have his head examined.”
A candid remark from: Secretary of Defense Robert Gates
before leaving office in July 2011 Continue reading

Fort Apache, Afghanistan

ft-apache

F O R T    A P A C H E    AFGHANISTAN by P.T. Brent 15 August 2012

In the past few days our Corps lost six Marines in Afghanistan – scant news coverage – what is the matter with us?

“Any future defense secretary who advises the president to again send a big American land army into Asia or into the Middle East or Africa should have his head examined.”
A candid remark from: Secretary of Defense Robert Gates
before leaving office in July 2011 Continue reading

Notre Dame VIP

A University, once virtually unknown has once again cast its shadow far A University, at one time, virtually unknown, has once again cast its shadow far across the globe. Enter the tiny Leper colony of Kalaupapa Hawaii.
Clearly, on the bucket list for Father Monk Malloy, Monk Malloy  accompanied by a small following of Irish faithful from the Honolulu ND club hiked the treacherous sea cliffs filled with slimy rocks, mud and confronted by an ocean crashing 1600 feet below.  Trekked down into this small corner of the Island of Molokai.  Father Malloy brought home two scarred knees to attestation  to his warrior spirit.
Why this arduous effort ?
One compelling reason is to revisit the lives of the two of the Catholic Church’s newest saints.  Saint Damien, SS.CC. and Saint Marianne Cope,O.S.F. who unstintingly devoted their lives to  these abandoned souls.   Here, Father Malloy will say a mass in Father Damien small church and pray for the few remaining residents on the island.
Sad reflections:
Starting in 1866 with nine men and three women were allegedly tossed overboard and told to swim for shore.  The colony eventually housed more than 8000 people. Cut off from the rest of the world by 1600-foot cliffs on one side and ocean on the other, Kalaupapa, Molokai, is a naturally beautiful prison.
At its peak, about 1,200 men, women, and children were in exile in this island prison. The isolation law was enacted by King Kamehameha V and remained in effect until 1969, when it was finally repealed. Today, about fourteen former sufferers of leprosy (now known as Hansen’s Disease) continue to live there. The colony is now part of Kalaupapa National Historical Park.  The saving grace may have been the arrival of 33 year – old Belgian missionary Father Damien de Veuster in 1873. De Veuster lived and worked in the colony and finally contracted the disease himself.  Before his death in 1889, described himself as “the happiest missionary in the world”.  His work at Kalaupapa has been recognized as a model of compassionate care and was canonized as a saint by the Catholic Church in October of 2009.
The contemporary mission was to do a few days of repair work to the home of the nuns on the island.  The Notre Dame Alumni from Hawaii donated all tools, supplies and food necessary for the task.  Their president Lester Goo took on the onerous burden of making it all happen – no small feat.
Notre Dame’s President emeritus joined the ranks of men such as Robert Luis Stevenson who visited several times and donated a piano and as well as a poem.  Robert Louis Stevenson believed Damien was a saint and predicted that the Church would one day canonize him.
To the Reverend Sister Marianne
Matron of the Bishop Home, Kalaupapa.
To see the infinite pity of this place,
the mangled limbs, the devastated faces,
The innocent sufferers smiling at the rod,
A fool were tempted to deny his God.
He sees, and shrinks; but if he look again,
Lo, beauty springing from the breasts of pain!
He marks the sisters on the painful shores,
RLS
Sister Marianne Cope Pray for us
Father Damien pray for us
Apostles of the lepers pray for us
Before his death in 1889, described himself as “the happiest missionary in the world”.
Where does our society find such extraordinary human beings?    ptb
The contemporary mission was to do a few days of repair work to the home of the nuns on the island.  The Notre Dame Alumni from Hawaii donated all tools, supplies and food necessary for the task. Their president Lester Goo took on the onerous burden of making it all happen – no small feat
Notre Dame’s President emeritus joined the ranks of men such as Robert Luis Stevenson (RLS)  who visited several times and donated a piano and as well as a poem.  Robert Louis Stevenson believed Damien was a saint and predicted that the Church would one day canonize him.
To the Reverend Sister Marianne
Matron of the Bishop Home, Kalaupapa.
To see the infinite pity of this place,
The mangled limb, the devastated face,
The innocent sufferers smiling at the rod,
A fool were tempted to deny his God. 
He sees, and shrinks; but if he look again,
Lo, beauty springing from the breasts of pain!
He marks the sisters on the painful shores,
RLS

Sister Marianne Cope Pray for us

Father Damien pray for us

Apostles of the lepers pray for us

Amen

P.T. Brent Hawaii

U.S. Marines bring hope to a poor African nation

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Sunday, May 9, 2004
U.S. Marines bring hope to a poor African nation – French Foreign Legion joins Marines
By P.T. Brent

Djibouti, Horn of Africa; A Jeep bus careens wildly around a corner and the side mirror whacks the head of a local man; he drops, apparently dead. Djiboutians take little notice. Life is cheap is this lawless land. Continue reading