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Memorial Page

 
This page is dedicated to four Marine officers from VMFA-115
who perished on 10/26/65 in Vietnam.
 
They are:
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 

I remember the night, 26 Oct 1965, that McHale’s and Tebow's F-4 Phantoms crashed into Marble Mountain at Da Nang.

Most of the squadron was watching a movie at the outdoor facility at our compound which we affectionately called "Dogpatch".

I can remember the explosions as the two aircraft hit the top of Marble Mountain, we thought we were under attack from the VC.

As I remember it, Tebow had one of his engines shot out by ground fire and cut his approach short which took him over Marble Mountain instead of around the mountain for his base leg and final approach. The two planes were flying in close formation and both hit the mountain at the same time. Lt. McHale was only 21 but he seemed so much older in combat, I remember I had just turned 20 myself.

Tebow was a mustang, having come up thru the ranks. I can remember before VMFA-115 was deployed to Vietnam, we all served together at MCAS Cherry Point, NC. I recall that on our deployment to Boca Chica, Florida, in the Keys that we were on "hot pad" duty, which was flying missions between Florida and Cuba. Tebow encountered a MiG flying in close proximity to the 12 mile limit and wanted so bad to engage the MiG in an air-to-air exchange. Permission was denied which so upset Bill Tebow that he flew over downtown Miami so low that windows were shattered. He was grounded after that incident and was later re-instated because we were deployed to Vietnam, and a man of his stature and experience would be needed for what was to come in Vietnam. I can still see McHale and Tebow walking out to their F-4's on numerous occasions. I wish they hadn't walked out to those planes on 26 Oct 1965.

 Semper Fi,

William J. Davis, USMC, VMFA-115

I sent you (Lt McHale & Lt. Gendebien) out on that mission that night, when you called me back up to your cockpit you had it closed, we made eye contact just inches away from each other through the glass, you then saluted me, I returned your salute and launched your A/C. That salute has haunted me to this very day. I love you Sir, hope I'll see you again.

 

Semper Fi,

 

Philip Monteleone, USMC , VMFA-115

 

 

 

 

  * * Marines * *

I like the fact that if you are a self-declared enemy of America, running into a Marine outfit in combat is your worst nightmare...and that your health record is either about to get a lot thicker, or be closed out entirely.

I like the fact that Marines are steadfast and consistent in everything they do... regardless of whether you agree with them or not.

I like the fact that Marines view the term 'politically correct' with nothing but pure disdain.

I like the fact that Marines stand tall and rigid in their actions, thoughts, and deeds when others bend with the direction of the wind and are as confused as a dog looking at a ceiling fan.

I like the fact that each and every Marine considers the honor and legacy of The Corps as his personal and sacred trust to protect and defend.

I like the fact that most civilians don't have a clue what makes us tick and that's not a bad thing. Because if they did, it would probably scare the Hell out of them.

I like the fact that others say they want to be like us, but don't have what it takes in the Pain-Gain-Pride department to make it happen.

I like the fact that the Marines came into being in a bar, named Tun Tavern and that Marines still gather in pubs, bars and slop chutes to share sea stories and hot scoop.

I like the fact that Marines do not consider it a coincidence that there are 24 hours in a day and 24 beers in a case, because Marines know there is a reason for everything that happens.

I like our motto, SEMPER FIDELIS,  and the fact that we don't shed it when the going gets tough, the battlefield gets deadly or when we hang up our uniform for the last time.

I like the fact that Marines take care of each other, in Combat and time of Peace.

I like the fact that Marines know the difference between 'Chicken Salad' and 'Chicken Shit' and aren't afraid to call either for what it is.

I like the fact that the people of America hold Marines in the highest esteem and that they know that they can count on us to locate, close with, and destroy those who would harm them.

I like the fact that people think we are cocky.... Yet we know that we have confidence in everything we do and the fact that they don't know the taste of that makes them look at us as if we are arrogant.

I like that fact that we know the taste of freedom and would give our very Lives for it. And that it is a taste the protected will ever know.

I like the fact that Ronald Reagan said... “Some people spend an entire lifetime wondering if they made a difference... Marines don't have that problem!”

I like the fact that we are brothers to the end.... And that no matter what happens in life, we know that we have one another's 'six'.

I like the fact that an elected member of congress felt compelled to publicly accuse the Marine Corps of being 'radical and extreme'.

I also like the fact that our Commandant informed that member of congress that she was absolutely correct and that he passed on his thanks for the compliment.

I like the fact that Marine leaders - of every rank - know that issuing every man and woman a black beret - or polka-dotted boxer shorts for that matter - does absolutely nothing to promote morale, fighting spirit or combat effectiveness.

I like the fact that Marines are Marines first... Regardless of age, race, creed, color, sex, and national origin, or how long they served, their former rank, or what goals they achieve in life.

I like Marines, and I love the fact that I am humbled to walk among the ranks of other Marines.

I like the fact that you always know where you stand with a Marine. With Marines, there is no middle ground or gray area. There are only Missions, Objectives and Facts.

In closing...if you aren't a Marine, the next best thing is to have a Marine for a husband, wife,  father, mother, grandfather, grandmother, brother, sister, son, daughter, best friend, or friend.

SAEPE EXPERTUS, SEMPER FIDELIS, FRATRES AETERNI
(Often Tested, Always Faithful, Brothers Forever)

 Semper Fi
 
 

 

 

Navy Lt. Cmdr. (SEAL) Jonas B. Kelsall

Died August 6, 2011 serving during Operation Enduring Freedom

32, of Shreveport, La.; assigned to an East Coast-based SEAL team; died Aug. 6 in Wardak province, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when the CH-47 Chinook helicopter in which he was riding was shot down.



Lt. Cmdr. (SEAL) Jonas B. Kelsall, 32, of Shreveport, La., enlisted in September 1996.

Kelsall and Chief Petty Officer Robert James Reeves, also killed in the crash, were childhood friends in Shreveport, where they played soccer together and graduated from Caddo Magnet High School, Kelsall’s father, John, told The Times of Shreveport and KLSA-TV.

Both joined the military after graduation.

Kelsall, 33, was one of the first members of SEAL Team 7, his father said. The Navy said Kelsall reported to his East Coast-based SEAL team in May 2008.

He trained in San Diego and met his wife of three years, Victoria, when he was attending the University of Texas out of Basic Underwater Demolition training, his father said.

Kelsall’s decorations include the Legion of Merit; two Bronze Stars with Combat ‘V’ device for valor; Joint Service Commendation Medal with Combat ‘V’ device for valor; three Navy/Marine Corps Commendation Medals; Joint Service Achievement Medal; Presidential Unit Citation; Combat Action Ribbon; Navy Unit Commendation; National Defense Service Medal; Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal; Sea Service Deployment Ribbon; Rifle Marksmanship Medal and Pistol Marksmanship Medal.
 

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