Keith Brownmiller
Here is a current photo of SgtMaj Ray Wilburn and his beautiful wife, Irene at one of the recent Marine Corps Birthday Balls. According to the SgtMaj, this is his 75th Marine Corps Birthday out of 239.

Our 2016 Reunion Guest of Honor and Survivor of the Battle of Tarawa!


The Gunny
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Rick Holly
Hopefully, we can all meet them in 2016! What a great looking couple.
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Keith Brownmiller
If you look very close at this true American Hero, he fought in three wars, WWII, Korea and Viet Nam, what do you see?

A warrior of three wars and not a single Purple Heart. You also see a Legion of Merit with a "Combat V" for combat service in Viet Nam.
The Gunny
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Rick Holly
Gunny, you got to keep both of them healthy. We need them at our next reunion.
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Keith Brownmiller
We have been talking about getting some of his toughts and stories, some specific to those 76 hours in the Battle of Tarawa. I can tell, however, there are some very painful thoughts and feeling that go back some 70 years. I have to tread lightly in getting him to tell his story as he believes very strongly that it has never been about him, but the Corps.

He also wanted to know if we were actively looking for other survivors of that epic battle. To which my answer was Yes. So my Brothers, lets search the country aggressively for the others that faught there.
The Gunny
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Rick Holly
Keith Brownmiller wrote:
We have been talking about getting some of his toughts and stories, some specific to those 76 hours in the Battle of Tarawa. I can tell, however, there are some very painful thoughts and feeling that go back some 70 years. I have to tread lightly in getting him to tell his story as he believes very strongly that it has never been about him, but the Corps.

He also wanted to know if we were actively looking for other survivors of that epic battle. To which my answer was Yes. So my Brothers, lets search the country aggressively for the others that faught there.

What an excellent idea.
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Keith Brownmiller
At our 2016 reunion, what better way to celebrate the history of our great ship along with CV-40, to get those survivors we find to attend our reunion as it might well be the last for some of them to spend time with their brothers.

The Gunny
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Rick Holly
What a great idea for them. We can help bring them together. I like helping others.
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Keith Brownmiller
Here is another picture of SgtMaj Ray Wilburn from a couple of years ago.

The Gunny
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Keith Brownmiller
Except that in addition to this rifle, he also carried his part of a team packed mortar.
The Gunny
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