Long story short:
The Fourth Marine Division Association is folding this year. But first–there’s one last liberty call in Jacksonville, North Carolina.
I got my marching orders from Gunga.
The initial operations plan called for a two-pronged assault, to seize the reunion in the name of Able Company. Gunga and Tracy, old gunner and new assistant. Then the rest of the Smith clan joined forces; we would present a reasonably-sized and thoroughly formidable squad.
And then an emergency. And then another. And suddenly, the guest list was just me. But the orders stood.
So here I am. In the Home2 Suites in Jacksonville. And the past two days are a bit of a busy blur. Despite rental car adventures (don’t go Advantage), tales from the road (I will never take a road trip and arrive before 1130 PM, no matter what the distance or Google Maps estimate), and a sudden and decisive lack of a toothbrush (naturally), I managed to meet Robert Johnston, John Murach, and Joseph Solecki of 1/24. “Iron Mike” Mervosh is here; Domenick Tutalo and Horace Allen are on the registered list.
Short story shorter:
We have a 0630 departure tomorrow. We’ll be at Camp Lejeune when the flag goes up. The place where the First Separate Battalion was formed. Where the story of 1/24 as a whole begins.
There is so much more to say. As Phil Wood might have said, there is so much to remember, and so little time.