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Marine's 40th year of service honored in Iraq
Marine Corps News ^
| Jul 12, 2006
| Lance Cpl. James B. Hoke
Posted on 07/13/2006 3:58:28 PM PDT by SandRat
AL ASAD, Iraq (July 12, 2006) -- From navigating the jungles of Vietnam to surviving the deserts of Iraq, one warrior has been a part of almost every major campaign that the Marine Corps has had in the past four decades.
Marines with Task Force Military Police, 1st Battalion, 14th Marine Regiment, honored Chief Warrant Officer 4 Wayne H. Silva for his 40th anniversary in the Marine Corps while in Al Asad July 8.
"June 28, 1966, was the day that I stepped onto the yellow footprints," stated Silva, Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear defense officer, Task Force Military Police. "I've been serving for 30 years, but I really had a 10 year break in July of '69 thru July of '79."
During the past month, Silva's fellow Marines had secretly been planning the ceremony under his nose. From getting the Wings of Freedom Dining Facility to bake an enormous cake, to reserving a room for a few hours at the Morale, Welfare and Recreation building, they managed to set up the entire ceremony without letting him discover their plans, which was fairly easy to do given that Silva worked night shifts.
"When I stepped in that door, it was a total surprise," said Silva, a 57-year-old native of Martinez, Calif. "I was being very serious about this, as I thought I was about to get yelled at. I really did think someone was getting ready to chew my butt. Why else would they get you up in the middle of your sleeping hours?"
However, the actual person to originally begin setting up the ceremony was more than 7,000 miles away, according to Master Sgt. Brian J. Kemp, battalion operations chief, 1st Bn., 14th Marines.
"His wife was talking to my wife and brought it up to the (executive officer) and the sergeant major," said Kemp, a 40-year-old Glen Ellen, Calif., native. "They then brought it up with the MWR, who were all over it. I would say that within a day everyone was involved, and it blew up to what it is now."
The ceremony, being somewhat informal, began when the chief warrant officer stepped into the room to hear a loud, "Semper Fi!" screamed by the group of Marines waiting in surprise.
After walking around the room and shaking everyone's hands, Silva began the cake cutting portion of the ceremony.
"It really did bring back memories," said Silva, a graduate of Saint Mary's College. "Cake cutting is the importance of an event in our history. This cake, in particular, had a large eagle, globe and anchor on it, which gave it some real importance."
Once everyone had had their fair share of cake, several Marines stopped to talk to the old-time war veteran.
"I actually expected him to be retired by now, as he was in Vietnam," said Kemp, a Sonoma High School graduate. "When I first met him in 1984 as a (private first class), he was already a newly commissioned warrant officer. He was one of the first Marines outside of boot camp that I met. I'm now at 22 years in the Corps, and it's great to finish it off with him. We've kept bumping into each other over the years.
"Even though I was born in 1966, I don't feel so old as long as he is around," Kemp added. "He's definitely one of the most unique Marines I've known. He's dedicated to the Marines, and he has a passion for the Corps."
He is far and beyond one of the best Marines the battalion has, according to Cpl. Taletha L. Evans, CBRN noncommissioned officer-in-charge, Task Force Military Police.
"He is one of the best Marine officers I've ever worked for," said Evans, a 21-year-old native of Mountain Grove, Mo. "He has more knowledge than anyone here. He knows how to get things done, and he's very diplomatic in the way he does things. He's a great role model, as I can only hope that one day I have that much knowledge and rapport."
When asked about his service to the Marine Corps, Silva only had a few words to describe it.
"It has been a long ride," Silva concluded. "It has been fraught with difficulties. However, it's a ride that I'd do again. As you know the Marine Corps is different, and it is very demanding. That's why we wear the eagle, globe and anchor. That's why we chose this path."
TOPICS: Culture/Society; Foreign Affairs; War on Terror
KEYWORDS: 40th; honored; iraq; marines; service; year
Chief Warrant Officer 4 Wayne H. Silva cuts into the cake prepared for his 40th anniversary with the Marine Corps at the Morale, Welfare and Recreation building at Al Asad, Iraq, July 8. Silva is a Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear defense officer with Task Force Military Police, 1st Battalion, 14th Marine Regiment, who stepped on the yellow footprints June 28, 1966. He has been a part of almost every major campaign that the Marine Corps has had in the past four decades, and attributes the cake cutting ceremony as showing the importance of an event in history. He is a 57-year-old native of Martinez, Calif. Photo by: Lance Cpl. James B. Hoke
posted on 07/13/2006 3:58:32 PM PDT
To: 91B; HiJinx; Spiff; MJY1288; xzins; Calpernia; clintonh8r; TEXOKIE; windchime; Grampa Dave; ...
HAPPY ANNAVERSARY, HAPPY ANNAVERSARY,
HAAAA-PPY 40th ANNNN-A-ver-SA-ry in the Corps Chief!
posted on 07/13/2006 4:00:53 PM PDT
(Duty, Honor, Country. What else needs to be said?)
You might want to check this out. Nice celebration for a Marine who really put in his dues.
Semper fi. Thanks for the 40 years.
posted on 07/13/2006 4:03:34 PM PDT
by Alexander Rubin
(Octavius - You make my heart glad building thus, as if Rome is to be eternal.)
posted on 07/13/2006 4:10:12 PM PDT
(HM/2 USN, 3rd Bn. 5th Marines, RVN 1969. - St. Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle!)
"June 28, 1966, was the day that I stepped onto the yellow footprints,"
About the date I graduated H/S, I salute his service.
Email received today.
. Hmmmm, something to ponder
Your alarm goes off, you hit the snooze and sleep for another 10
He stays up for days on end.
You take a warm shower to help you wake up.
He goes days or weeks without running water.
You complain of a "headache", and call in sick.
He gets shot at, as others are hit, and keeps moving forward.
You put on your anti war/don't support the troops shirt, and go meet up
with your friends.
He still fights for your right to wear that shirt.
You make sure you're cell phone is in your pocket.
He clutches the cross hanging on his chain next to his dog tags.
You talk trash on your "buddies" that aren't with you.
He knows he may not see some of his buddies again.
You walk down the beach, staring at all the pretty girls.
He walks the streets, searching for insurgents and terrorists.
You complain about how hot it is.
He wears his heavy gear, not daring to take off his helmet to wipe the
sweat from his brow.
You go out to lunch, and complain because the restaurant got your order
He does not get to eat today.
Your maid makes your bed and washes your clothes.
He wears the same things for weeks, but makes sure his weapons are clean
You go to the mall and get your hair redone.
He doesn't have time to brush his teeth today.
You are angry because your class ran 5 minutes over.
He is told he will be held an extra 2 months.
You call your girlfriend and set a date for that night.
He waits for the mail to see if there is a letter from home.
You hug and kiss your girlfriend, like you do everyday.
He holds his letter close and smells his love's perfume.
You roll your eyes as a baby cries.
He gets a letter with pictures of his new child, and wonders if they'll
You criticize your government, and say that war never solves anything.
He sees the innocent tortured and killed by their own government and
remembers why he is fighting.
You hear the jokes about the war, and make fun of the men like him.
He hears the gun fire and bombs.
You see only what the media wants you to see.
He sees bodies lying around him. Some are his own buddies.
You are asked to go to the store by your parents. You don't.
He does what he is told.
You stay at home and watch TV.
He takes whatever time he is given to call and write home, sleep, and
You crawl into your bed, with down pillows, and try to get comfortable.
He crawls under a tank for shade and a 5 minute nap, only to be woken
by gun fire.
You sit there and judge him, saying the world is a worse place because
of men like him.
If only there were more men like him.
If you support your troops, resend this.
posted on 07/13/2006 8:06:38 PM PDT
(Speak Softly and Carry A Big Stick)
Semper Fi, CWO-4 Silva!
I've never met a Warrant Officer that wasn't: "cool"! :-)
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