Newsletters & Information > National Newsletter June/July 2007
National Newsletter June/July 2007

Jun 25, 2007

National Newsletter
June/July 2007

“Preserving the Legacy”

Montford Point Marine Association Inc.
National Newsletter

Fellow members and friends,

Our Spring Council was hugely successful! Special thanks to
Jacksonville Chapter President James Tippins for being such
a gracious host! All the meetings were well attended and
everyone was respectful. The Awards committee which
consists of the Regional Vice Presidents, our National Vice
President and a past National President met for over 4
hours to consider the 2008 Association Awards. As I
promised during 2005, the Montford Point Hall-of-Fame
process has been streamlined to ensure that the most worthy
individuals who have had a lasting effect on our
Associations as a whole were considered. I announced to
the membership that I will run for President in 2007 and
Mike Johnson has agreed to also run again. I look forward
to seeing many of you in Jacksonville, Florida at our


MPMA Convention 2007: The dates for our 2007 convention in
Jacksonville, FLORIDA have been set. Convention will be
from 25-29 July with the 25th and 29th as travel days. The
President’s reception once again being held on the
Wednesday travel day. The number to the Hyatt Regency is
800-233-1234 or 904-588-1234. The Hyatt Regency
Jacksonville Riverfront offers 966 sleeping rooms with
110,000 sq. ft. of meeting space. The Regency is located in
the heart of Downtown Jacksonville along the St. John’s
River. I have recently been informed that all the hotel
rooms have been booked and we are searching for additional
rooms at nearby locations. Additional information will be
passed as soon as it is received.
We also received three notifications of interests for
Convention 2008 and we look forward to receiving the formal
proposals at the convention. Convention information is
available on the Camp Lejeune, New York Metro and Maryland
28 websites. Those website addresses appear at the end of
this update. Thank you Chapter Webmasters for getting this
work out!
National Officers eligible for reimbursement should make
their flight reservations no later than three weeks prior
to the event. The association really has to watch our cost
and members who make last minute reservations are costing
us unnecessarily. Please treat Association monies as they
were yours because they are!

Elections; in addition to the National President and Vice
President, the National Recording Secretary and the
National Financial Secretary and the National Treasurer are
up for election. If you are interested in running for any
of these offices, please let our election chairperson know
at the beginning of the convention.

Also, with the exception of the Central Region who
conducted an election last year, the three other regions
(Southern, Northern and Western) will hold their Regional
Vice President elections at our convention in Jacksonville,
Florida. Only those delegates within their respective
region may vote.

NAACP Convention 2007: The 2007 NAACP Convention will be
held in Detroit, MI from 7-12 July. We purposely scheduled
our convention not to conflict with the NAACP. For
detailed information about the NAACP Convention, please
visit their website at

MPMA Convention 2008: Once again we find the Association
without a dedicated location for convention 2008. Chapters
are reminded that we have a very capable Convention
Director, Past National President Nathaniel James, who will
work with you through the entire process. The Convention
is a great way to inject much needed funds into the local

MPMA Convention 2009: It’s never too early to start
planning to host a convention. If you are interested
please let me or our National Vice President know.

MUSTARD - Chapter/Region Happenings:

Philadelphia Chapter #1: has announced their annual Marine
Corps Birthday and Veterans Ball will be Saturday 17
November at the Philadelphia Airport Ramada Inn beginning
at 6:00 PM. Tickets are $45.00 each and may be purchased
from Joe Geeter. Joe may be reached at 610-495-3619.

Chapters are reminded to contact me directly with the
details of your upcoming events. It’s never too early to
advertise your events for planning purposes.

To South Regional Vice President James T. Averhart for his
promotion on 8 June 2007 to Chief Warrant Officer 4! James
is also the former Chapter President for the Quantico
Chapter and is currently the Commanding Officer of the
Marine Corps Brig at Camp Lejeune, North Carolina.
Well done James (Gunner)!

To National Veterans Affairs Officer Leo Taylor who
continues to help offset the cost of the mailings from the
National Office by sending 1st class stamps to be on a
regular basis. Thanks Leo for your assistance since day
one of this administration!

To Major Rhonda C. Martin who was recently frocked to her
current rank. Major Martin is the aide to Lieutenant
General Ronald Coleman and keeps the lines of communication
flowing between our offices and his. Congratulations
Major! We look forward to seeing you and the General at
our convention this year.

To former Marine and Jacksonville Chapter member Yvette C.
Harris, who was named a Presidential Management Fellow.
This is a very exhausting and competitive process. More
can be learned about this program by visiting
To St Louis Chapter member and original Montford Pointer,
William Washington and John Tilghman. Mr Washington and
Mr. Tilghman shared their and all the Montford Pointer’s
experience with the National World War II Museum Special
Projects Historian Thomas Naquin. This will help ensure
that our story is documented for all Americans to see. Mr.
Washington is also assisting with the Documentary “Johnny
Be Good” which tells the life and times of Original
Montford Pointer and Rock and Roll Hall of Fame member
Johnnie Johnson. More information about this project can
be learned at

Fraser Road: As reported in this newsletter, efforts were
made to have a road at Camp Johnson (Montford Point)
renamed after Corporal Gilbert Fraser, the first African
American Marine to die in uniform. Over the years the name
of the road was renamed and through the efforts of
Lieutenant Colonel L.J. Kimball with an endorsement from
the Lejeune Base Commander, Colonel Adele Hodges, HQMC has
approved this renaming at a ceremony that was conducted on
22 June 2007. Special thanks again to Colonel Kimball for
his research and efforts to correct this error.

Queen’s Contest: Chapters are reminded to bring their
final report to our National Convention to Special Projects
Officer George Herring. Chapters are once again asked not
to bring the majority of their monies to the convention so
that George may write checks to the raffle members on the
spot. Please do not send ticket stubs to George. Chapters
should bring their stubs with them to the convention and
they will be matched with funds when your final report is
turned in at the convention in Jacksonville Florida. The
Queens Contest is our premier National Fundraiser. Besides
raising money for our National Scholarship commitment and
to help with operating costs, this fundraiser should be
viewed as an excellent opportunity to raise money and
awareness of our individual chapters.

Chapters are required to raise a minimum of $500.00 each to
remain financial with the National Office. Chapters that
are not financial will not have any voting privileges at
the National Convention. Tickets are $1.00 each for a
grand prize of $2500.00 cash with 2d place receiving
$500.00 and 3rd place getting $300.00. Please see your
chapter representative for tickets.

Books: The May 2007 edition of Leatherneck Magazine
reviewed the book “Collie J” that tells the story of
Original Montford Pointer Collie J. Nickerson the first
black member of Denig’s Demons”, the World War II Marine
combat correspondences. Collie later was the man who was
instrumental in bringing Grambling College to National
recognition by sending advanced press releases to 400 black
newspapers nation wide. Book may be purchased through the
Marine Corps Association

There is another book that has recently been written about
the Men of Montford Point by Retired Marine Corps
Lieutenant Colonel Ronald K. Culp. Colonel Culp writes
historical novels and is a freelance writer. He lives in
Kerrville, Texas. The book’s released date has been pushed
back to 1 July, 2007 but can be previewed on the following
website; if you click on "Add to Cart", the ordering
process will start.

National Chaplain: Chapter Presidents and members are
reminded to encourage our elder members to have a bio
prepared for the press and the funeral home. We often get
last minute requests from the family asking about their
loved one’s service dates, rank, etc… Please make sure
that up-to-date bio information is ready at the Chapter
level. Members are reminded to report the lost of members
and supporters immediately to our National Chaplin,
Reverend James Moore. Reverend Moore may be reached at
843-846-0881 or email at:

National Sergeant at Arms, Racine “Tree” Wilson wants to
remind members to be in The Montford Point Uniform during
the Opening Meetings and Picture (Friday) during the
Convention. A Navy Blue Blazer, Light Blue or White shirt
with a red tie, Gray trousers, black belt (or Skirt or
Trousers for Women) appropriate MPMA Cover, MPMA Packet
Crest and black shoes have been the most acceptable uniform
until we pass an official Resolution to the by laws.
Chapters are reminded also to bring their Chapter banners
and flags to the convention. Official Cap and Badge may be
purchased through or National Quartermaster Elijah “Abe”
Abram. Abe may be reached at 843-838-5475.

Miscellaneous: Retired Marine Lieutenant General Carol
Mutter and her Husband retired Marine Colonel Jim Mutter
(The Mutter Marines) have spent part of their retired years
supporting and encouraging our nation’s youth to be the
best citizens and representatives they can. The Mutter
Marines are asking for our support to help fund an
outstanding young African American young man in his quest
to become an Olympian Cyclist. Joshua Weir is an articulate
25 year old 6”1” 185 pound handsome package of sleek, hard
muscle American cyclist. As you can imagine, to attain his
goal Joshua needs A LOT OF MONETARY SUPPORT. That’s where
we come in. We are asking our members, who can, to write a
check to:
Ebenezer Foundation (Mizpah Inc.)
Attention: Joshua Weir Fund
1901 North Harding Street
Indianapolis, IN 46202
Colonel Mutter tells me it will take about 150K to help
Joshua make it to the Olympics. Every dollar counts and
helps. Please visit the following website for more or phone Colonel Mutter
directly at 317-852-4963 or email at;

As always, please continue to check our official website
for more information through the Association at or or or

Please continue to do all that you do to Preserve the
Legacy of our heroes!

Semper Fidelis!

Joe Geeter
National President
Master Gunnery Sergeant (retired)
Montford Point Marine Association
27 Red Tail Court
Limerick, PA 19468



Historical advisor Byron Stewart PhD


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