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 convention!
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 http://www.naacp.org/home/.
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 chapter.
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.
Kudos 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 https://www.pmf.opm.gov/index.aspx. 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 www.johnniebegood.net.
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. http://www.mcfarlandpub.com/book-2.php?isbn=0-7864-3000-1
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: firstname.lastname@example.org
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 information:www.joshuaweir.com or phone Colonel Mutter directly at 317-852-4963 or email at; email@example.com.
As always, please continue to check our official website for more information through the Association at www.montfordpointmarines.com or www.mpma28.com http://www.mpmalejeune10.org or http://www.mpmanyc.com or www.montfordpointchicagochapter2.org
Please continue to do all that you do to Preserve the Legacy of our heroes!
Joe Geeter National President Master Gunnery Sergeant (retired) Montford Point Marine Association 27 Red Tail Court Limerick, PA 19468 firstname.lastname@example.org 610-495-3619