MONTFORD POINT MARINE NEWSLETTER
We have had some very exciting movements in our efforts to have the United States Congress award a Congressional Gold Medal to our Original Montford Pointers. During the last week in September our National President, James Averhart, three original Montford Pointers; LtCol Joseph Carpenter, 1stSgt George Kidd and Corporal James Ferguson and myself visited the Russell Building, where the Senators Offices are, and had a meeting with Illinois Senators Richard “Dick” Durbin and Roland Burris to discuss the Congressional Gold Medal initiative. I am pleased to report that soon after that meeting the Senate assigned our request a bill number (S1695).
Oct 26, 2009
Convention 2009 is at the very top of our agenda and I’d like to start by saying congratulations to the newly elected National President, James Averhart. James is an active duty Chief Warrant Officer and past Quantico Chapter President and Senior Regional Vice President. James brings a ton of organizational skills and command experience to the top leadership role of our Association.
Aug 26, 2009
STATE OF THE ASSOCIATION
In compliance with the National By-laws of the Montford Point Marine Association, I hereby submit the State of the Association for the year 2009 for your consideration.
May 27, 2009
National Newsletter April, May, 2009
This year the following offices are up for election/reelection: National President, National Vice President, National Recording Secretary, National Financial Secretary and National Treasurer. If you are interested in running or nominating a member for any of these offices, please notify me immediately.
Apr 21, 2009
National Newsletter January/February 2009
I attended the New York Chapter Ball which featured Major General Walker Gaskin (2008 MPMA Hall-of-Famer) as the guest of honor. Once again NY Chapter President and Northern Regional Vice President James Carr and his Chapter put on a first class event attended by over 500 members and supporters. It was particularly gratifying to see long time NY Chapter member Joe Davis at the event. Joe suffered a stroke last summer at appeared to be in very good physical shape at the event.
Jan 26, 2009
2008 National Convention National Newsletter
2008 National Convention
The top news in our Association is the very successful National Convention which was held in Houston, Texas 16-20 July 2008. Chapter President Leo Taylor realized his dream to have one more convention in Texas during his tenure as Chapter President.
Aug 9, 2008
2008 Spring Council
MPMA Convention 2009: We received three bids for our 2009 Convention at the Spring Council from St Louis, New York and Quantico, Virginia. Chapters are requested to discuss these locations with your members and be prepared to vote on a site the very first day of our Convention in July. Thank you to the three chapters who presented these bids. We will hear bids for 2010 at our 2008 Convention in Houston.
May 9, 2008
Preparation for our Spring Council
2008 Spring Council Preparation for our Spring Council tops the list of news for this edition of our Newsletter. The Spring Council is for members of the National Executive Council which included the National Officers, Chapter Presidents and former National Presidents. All members of the Association may attend this meeting.
Mar 18, 2008
BLACK HISTORY MONTH February 2008 Edition
The first note is to encourage members and supporters to check our official national website regularly. Our webmaster, Master Gunnery Sergeant Gilbert Taylor is literally updating this site with new information daily. The site address is;
www.montfordpointmarines.com. We are attempting to affix rank or title to all the members listed in our hall-of-fame page. If you see a name and are positive of the rank, please notify MGySgt Taylor and he will update.
Feb 5, 2008
Mr. Washington will be missed by all
MEMBERSHIP DUES: are currently due for all annual members. Please forward both your National Dues (still at only $25.00 per year) and your Chapter dues immediately to your Chapter representative or to National Financial Secretary David Fortune at MPMA PO Box #1070 Sharon Hill PA 19079. In order to continue to run this organization we are in great need for all members to become current in their dues.
Jan 14, 2008
Congressional Black Caucus
At the top of this edition of our update is the 2007 Congressional Black Caucus which was held in Washington DC September 26th-29th. Florida State Senator Anthony C. “Tony” Hill, Sr. was largely responsible for the Montford Point Marine Association receiving an audience at The Honorable Corrine Brown (D-FL) and The Honorable Sanford D. Bishop, Jr. (D-GA) 19th Annual Congressional Black Caucus Veterans Braintrust.
Oct 30, 2007
Convention 2008 was a huge success!
First order of business for this newsletter is to thank the many, many members that sent condolences, flowers, letters, emails and calls to both me and my family over the death of my Father, Joseph Henry Geeter Sr. I was overwhelmed by the support you have given the Geeter Family. A very special thank you to the Chicago Chapter members who came out in great numbers to my Father’s memorial service in Chicago. It meant a lot to my family to have you there.
Aug 23, 2007
National Newsletter June/July 2007
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.
Jun 25, 2007
Roundtree, died suddenly
All members should have received a copy of the February/March 2007 National Update via US Postal Mail by now. Please make your reservations are early so that our host chapter can plan for room sizes and other activities during our Council. Chapters are constantly reminded to ensure that our National Recording Secretary, Regina Lawrence, has the most up-to-date member roster to that members receive this information timely and that the Association does not spend money mailing to addresses that are not current.
May 2, 2007
National Update February/March 2007
The Documentary Movie still commands many of the emails and phone calls I receive. I am encouraging all members to carefully read the next few sentences. Both the University of North Carolina Wilmington and South Carolina State University are aware of the great desire to put a copy of this Documentary in the hands of those who want it. However, they both have a marketing plan to distribute the Documentary AFTER it is scheduled to air on PBS stations. That date is still not final. In the interim, there have been, and there will continue to be, showings of this film across the country and I will notify members when and where that happens. Nobody wants to get this into member’s hands as quickly as I do
Mar 1, 2007
Wow another calendar has passed all too soon!
There are no less than three books covering the Montford Point experience that have been written or are being researched as we speak. The first book from the University of North Carolina Wilmington’s Dr. Melton A. McClaurin is ready for distribution and details how to obtain a copy are outlined further in this update.
Jan 24, 2007
Montford Point Marine Documentary
The immediate plan is to get a copy of the Documentary into the hands of all Chapter Presidents and to release the film to Public Television. While there still is no definite date for public release, we are hoping it will be prior to Black History Month in February. I know and the powers that be know that the desire is great to obtain a copy of this film. We are continuing to ask that members be patient. As soon as public purchase information is available it will be passed to all.
Nov 28, 2006
Lieutenant General Promotion
Lieutenant General Promotion: Topping this month’s items is the promotion of Major General Ronald S. Coleman to Lieutenant General on Friday, 27 October at 3:00 PM at the Clubs of Quantico. This will be only the second time in Marine Corps History that an African American has been promoted to this rank. The first was, of course, Famed Aviator Lieutenant General Frank E. Petersen Jr. USMC retired. There will be a contingent of Montford Point Marine Association members to include some Original Montford Pointers and myself at this historic ceremony.
Oct 25, 2006
Documentary Film Information
I am reminding everyone that this Documentary Film is in the hands of the dedicated individuals who envisioned and produced it. Both Lieutenant Colonel Willie and Dr. Melton McLaurin understand that it is important to have this film available to members who would like to purchase a copy. While there is currently no definitive timetable to release this documentary, we are very hopeful that it will be soon.
Sep 19, 2006
National Update July/August 2006 MPMA
Academy Award Winner Actor Lou Gossett Jr. was the highlight of both the Documentary Preview and the National Banquet. Mr. Gossett graciously talked to, took pictures with and signed many autographs for hundreds of members and fans. Mr. Gossett is committed to seeing the story of the Men of Montford Point is widely told to the American people. Special thanks to Dr Melton McLaurin, retired Lieutenant Colonel Clarence Willie, Finney Greggs and his wife Louise for their untiring devotion to this project! Other highlights of Convention 2006 are:
Aug 12, 2006
National Update June 2006
Sergeant Major James McCargo was buried with full military honors on May 20th 2006. The Sergeant Major was only the second African American to attain the rank of Sergeant Major as we know it today. An original Montford Pointer, Sergeant Major McCargo served in World War II, Korea and Vietnam.
Jun 13, 2006
The Passing of a legend
The Passing of a legend: It is with the deepest regret that I notify the members that retired Sergeant Major James McCargo has passed.
May 15, 2006
April & May MPMA National Newsletter
Retired General Clifford L. Stanley his wife Roz, Past National President Sam Saxton, Past National Sergeant at Arms, Kennard Turner, his wife and I attended the filming of an interview with Former Secretary of State and Chairman of the Joints Chief of Staff, General Colin Powell. The interviewed was arranged by The History Makers (www.thehistorymakers.com) and conducted by Emmy Award winning Journalist Juan Williams. The event was attended by many former cabinet members that General Powell served with and was held at George Washington University in Washington DC. General Powell and others mentioned the Montford Point Marines during the evening and I am working with one of their schedulers to have some original Montford Pointers interviewed by The History Makers. Please visit their website to learn more about this very worthy project.
May 5, 2006
Montford Point gets Oscar-winning actor
“I know you’re strong and it’s on your shoulders that I stand,” said the actor, who earned an Oscar playing a drill instructor in the 1982 film, “An Officer and a Gentleman.”
Apr 12, 2006
Into the Tige Jaw First Black Marine Aviator
Into the Tiger's Jaw:
America's First Black Marine Aviator:
The Autobiography of Lt. Gen. Frank E. Petersen with J. Alfred Phelps
By Lt. Gen. Frank E. Petersen
with J. Alfred Phelps
Mar 30, 2006
MPMA National Update March 2006
Museum Director, Finney Greggs has announced that the premier of the Montford Point Documentary Film will be on Saturday, 29 July. More details will follow as they are received. Finney will send a special letter to Chapter Presidents encouraging Original Montford Point Marines to attend this much anticipated premier.
MPMA February 2006 Newsletter Update
Quantico Chapter #32 celebrated their very first Black History Month Heritage Ball in a big fashion. Retired Lieutenant General Frank Petersen was the guest speaker. The sold out crowd of at least 250 enjoyed a great meal, African Story Telling and a remarkable (no notes) speech by General Peterson.
Boy Scouts to the Montford Marines
Among them is Richard V. Washington, one of nearly 20,000 black Marines who served in the war after training at Montford Point, a segregated military camp in North Carolina.
Feb 2, 2006
Editors Teachers & Friends Black History
This February, with our nation once again looking towards the ‘Corps’ for its defense, I hope we are all encouraged to remember, honor and learn more about the stories of this collection of men as well, men who helped defend and carry the promise of America abroad, even while – for them – it hadn’t been fully realized at home.
Feb 1, 2006
Montford Point Marine National Update January 2006
Black History Month Program: The Association has the opportunity to send representatives to Huston-Tillotson University in Austin, Texas to be recognized by the Historically Black Colleges and Universities during Black History Month the weekend of 24-25 February 2006. Events include a reception where HBCU Presidents, Senior Department of Defense Leaders and elected officials will convene and mingle.
Jan 31, 2006
Black History Month Celebration
Reminder:To gain access to the Base you must have a valid driver’s license, proof of current vehicle insurance and vehicle registration.
Jan 19, 2006
World Wide Membership Drive
If you need a sense of belonging — we’ve got it. If you have a longing to help others — we’ve got it.
If you want more friends in your life — we’ve got it. If you want family activities to enjoy — we’ve got that, too.
So, if you want to be a part of a premier organization, consider what the Montford Point Marines can do for you.
Jan 5, 2006
MPMA National Update January 2006
First, a very Happy New Year to you all!! 2005 has proven to be a pivotal year for our Association. Your National Executive Council has been extremely busy preparing for the 2006 Spring Council and National Convention. The Museum Director has been working with the folks putting the final touches on our Documentary film and Chapters have been very busy closing out their calendar year events.
Jan 3, 2006
National Update November/December 2005
Nov. 7, 2005 - Two of the nation's largest home-improvement retailers are recognizing Veterans Day by offering discounts for military personnel.
The Home Depot and Lowe's companies both are offering a 10 percent discount for all active-duty military, reservists, retirees and their families Nov. 10 to 13.
Nov 9, 2005
National Update October 2005
Major General Walter Gaskin was frocked to his current rank in ceremonies on 7 October aboard Quantico, Virginia. The Commandant of the Marine Corps conducted the ceremony.
Oct 22, 2005
Fall Council Agenda 2005
I am asking the National Officers and NEC members to consider repelling the Life memberships Dues to the original $150.00 dollars.
Sep 23, 2005
National Update September 2005
Hurricane Katrina: has affected many of our lives and the lives of our family and friends. Chicago Chapter Norman Brown has suggested that we call on members to lend a hand to those in need.
Sep 4, 2005
National Update July/August 2005
In a very classy gesture, Past National President Nathaniel James conceded the election on the first day of business meetings. Nathaniel thanked his wife Judy for her six years of support as he led our Organization out of near bankruptcy into financial solvency.
Standard Operation Procedures
11 June 2005
Executive Council Members,
Attached you will find the Draft Copy of the Convention Standing Operating Procedures. Please review with you chapter members and bring this copy and your recommended changes to the National Convention in Chicago. If you are not attending the convention, please return to me prior to the Convention.
In order to run an efficient and profitable convention we must have procedures in place to guide convention hosts. Please take the time to provide your input.
We will vote on these changes at the convention.
If there are any questions, please do not hesitate to call me or National Convention Director, Ken Rollock at 201-569-7113.
If you are not an Executive Council Member, I ask that you pass this copy to your chapter.
Jun 11, 2005
MPMA NATIONAL UPDATE May 2005
The unfortunate death of Captain Frederick Branch has brought some much deserved attention to our organization. Many members and supporters worked very hard complying with press requests and phone calls. Special thanks again to our National Public Relations Officer, Master Sergeant retired, Carmen Cordoba, for fielding an unbelievable amount of phone calls and special requests.
May 23, 2005
Captain Branch died 10 April
This has been a most busy month for the Montford Point Marine Association. Topping this month’s update is the Death of Captain (ret) Frederick Branch. Captain Branch died 10 April and his funeral was 19 April in Philadelphia and he was interned 20 April at Quantico National Cemetery next to his wife Peggy who preceded him in death about 5 years ago.
Apr 20, 2005
Reverend James Moore
The first item this update is our National Chaplain, Reverend James Moore, underwent open heart surgery last Wednesday and was released from St Joseph’s Hospital on Saturday.
Apr 20, 2005
Today's funeral was well attended
Today's funeral was well attended, however we expect many more friends tomorrow at Quantico. At least 9 of the 13 Afro-American Marine Corps General Officers will be in attendance.
Apr 19, 2005
FRED BRANCH UPDATE
It's Official and Final !!! There will be a Chapel Service at "the Base Chapel
Apr 18, 2005
Captain Fred Branch's services
The following update is provided by Colonel Chris Baker. Please consider this the latest and hopefully final word on Captain Fred Branch's services
MPMA NATIONAL UPDATE March 2005
Our Annual Spring Council again tops the lists of items in this month’s update. The Spring Council will be held in Chicago from 7-10 April 2005 with the 7th and the 10th being travel days. Business will be conducted on the 8th and 9th of April. Please call now to reserve your rooms.
Mar 5, 2005
IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
H. CON. RES. 80
Commemorating the service to the Nation during World War II of the African-American members of the United States Marine Corps who came to be known as the Montford Point Marines.
Mar 1, 2005
They Worked and fought on Iwo Jima
One of the bravest sights I’ve seen, was on Iwo where a Black driver of a duck .... the nickname of a vehicle that was half boat and half truck. Time and time again, delivered much needed ammunition to Marines fighting at the foot of Suribachi, where that flag was raised. The Japanese shot two trucks out from under him, but he came back everytime. Battle hardened Marines cheered him from their foxholes.
Mar 1, 2005
Remembering the Montford Point Marines
They were no doubt excited that night in June 1942 when they heard the commandant of Camp LeJeune was coming to speak to them.
The men of the Montford Point camp in North Carolina had been training hard to become America's first black Marines.
Feb 21, 2005
Montford Point Marine Congressional Resolution
Honor the First African-American Marines
We urge you to join us in commemorating the sacrifice of the "Montford Point Marines" who honorably served our nation in World War II.
Feb 15, 2005
"It was rough," said James Glover Jr
"It was rough," said James Glover Jr., 94, who was among the first African-Americans to enlist in the Marines in 1942. "I think we're a part of history. Sometimes we were treated well, and sometimes we were treated rough, but we just accepted it and went on."
Feb 10, 2005
MPMA NATIONAL UPDATE January 2005
Happy New Years to All! New Years is a great opportunity to set goals and make resolutions. As we approach the busiest time of year for our Association I ask each and every one of you to continue to do what you can to assist in moving our organization from relative obscurity to the general public to a level of familiarity that other Veterans Groups enjoy.
Jan 5, 2005
MPMA NATIONAL UPDATE November/December 2004
A much belated Happy Birthday to our Marine Corps to all!!! I hope everyone had a reflective Veterans Day also. Also, this update will serve as my November/December update so I’ll take this opportunity to wish all of you and your families, a very Happy Holiday Season and a Prosperous 2005!
Nov 5, 2004
MPMA NATIONAL UPDATE OCTOBER 2004
New York Metro
Sunday, 7 November 2004. Annual Dinner Dance at Anton’s Caterers 96-43 Springfield Blvd, Queens Village, New York. Lieutenant Colonel Denice Williams will be recognized for an outstanding military career and her contributions to the Montford Point Marine Association.
Oct 5, 2004
Montford Poinr Marines Documentary
In July, Congress approved $500,000 through the Department of Defense to produce the documentary, a joint effort of the University of North Carolina Wilmington and South Carolina State University in Orangeburg, S.C., working closely with the Montford Point Marine Museum at Camp Lejeune, N.C. The award was made possible due to diligent efforts of South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham. Representative James Clyburn, also of South Carolina, was also supportive of the project.
Sep 20, 2004
MPMA UPDATE SEPTEMBER 2004
The first order of business is to answer the many questions that the members have had on the health of Captain Frederick Branch. Captain Branch, of course, was the first African American Commissioned Officer in the Marine Corps. Captain Branch is an original Montford Pointer. Captain Branch recently had exploratory surgery to investigate some discomfort he was experiencing and is recovering at his home in Philadelphia.
Aug 29, 2004
MPMA UPDATE JULY/AUGUST 2004
The first order of business is the death of Sergeant Major Louis Roundtree. The services for the Sergeant Major were held on Thursday 15 July at the chapel at Marine Corps Base Quantico, Virginia. There were over 220 attendees and nearly three-dozen Montford Pointers.
Jul 29, 2004
Louis Roundtree, Highly Decorated Marine, Dies
Louis Roundtree, 73, a retired Marine Corps sergeant major who was a decorated veteran of the Korean and Vietnam wars, died July 8 at the Department of Veterans Affairs nursing home in Washington after a stroke.
Jul 15, 2004
Sergeant Major Louis Rountree passed
It is with great sadness that I report to you that Sergeant Major Louis Rountree passed earlier this morning. Sergeant Major Rountree was widely recognized as the most decorated Montford Point Marine.
Jul 8, 2004
MPMA UPDATE JUNE 2004
The first topic on this month’s update is the National Convention 2004. There have been a few extra hotel rooms allotted to us for the convention. If you have not made your reservations, I highly encourage you to do so immediately. The Crystal City Marriott’s phone numbers are; 888-236-2427 or 703-920-3230. We have a great hotel rate and if you miss that rate, it will increase dramatically.
Jun 5, 2004
MPMA UPDATE MAY 2004
The first item this update is our National Chaplain, Reverend James Moore, who underwent open heart surgery last month. Reverend Moore has recovered very well and is back at work both at the bank and in the pulpit. Both Reverend Moore and his wife Gwen would like to thank everyone who sent notes of support and prayer during his illness. Reverend Moore still plans to make the convention but will not arrive until Saturday, 24 July.
May 5, 2004
Montford Point Marines observe training
Several of the pioneering Marines who trained at Montford Point, N.C., in the 1940s visited the Depot Feb. 13 to attend the morning colors ceremony and Company D's graduation, followed by a visit to the command museum.
The Montford Point Marines blazed a trail into the Corps' future while at the same time marking their place in its history books as the first black Marines.
Mar 5, 2004
Marine opens the book on Montford Point
Rhett has collected memories from 215 original Montford Point Marines in the commemorative book "Final Roll Call," which will be unveiled at the Montford Point Marine Association's National Convention in July. The purpose of the booklet is to help promote national recognition of the Montford Point Marines and to provide a directory of still-living Montford Pointers. When he sent the call out, his main intent was the latter.
Feb 24, 2004
MPMA December 2003/January2004 update
I sincerely hope that everyone had a great holiday season and will have a fantastic 2004!!! There are numerous initiatives at the Chapter, Regional & National level and I call on all members and supporters to find time in their schedules to react to requests for information timely so that 2004 will be a banner year for our association.
Dec 5, 2003
Corps’ first black officer
“I wanted to be a Marine officer, a leader of men, because of what I saw as an enlisted Marine. What I saw was Marines willing to do what it takes to get the job done, who were a band of brothers, and who were able to overcome any obstacle. I wanted to be part of that elite group,” said the Houston, Texan.
Feb 27, 2003
February is Black History Month
Lieutenant General Frank E. Petersen was the Marine Corps' first African-American aviator, first African-American general, and, as of April 1998, the only African-American Marine to wear three stars.
SERGEANT MAJOR EDGAR R. HUFF, USMC
Sergeant Major Edgar R. Huff, one of the first African-Americans to enlist in the Marine Corps in 1942, and the first African-American to be promoted to the rank of sergeant major.