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   a My Space  tribute and memorial page for  Daniel Noble

 Hospitalman (FMF) Daniel S. Noble, 21, Whittier, Calif.,
                                              November 11, 1985 -July 24, 2007
KIA Tuesday July 24, 2007 as a result of enemy action while conducting security operations in the Dilaya Province, Iraq.

memorial banner 2

HN Daniel S. Noble, United States Navy Corpsman:

 He was permanently assigned to 1st Marine Division, Fleet Marine Force Pacific, Camp Pendleton, Calif.

memorial photo

We have finally been touched by  war.  Daniel Noble was a  friend   of  my two younger daughters. He had a great sense of humor and a sweet and kind nature. He always was a hero. We will all miss him.

  On July 24, 2007 HM Daniel (Doc) Noble was killed by an insurgent IED attack.  Doc Noble was the drivers side passenger in the 4th vehicle of a 43 vehicle convoy passing through the Diyala province of Iraq. 

Doc Noble, 21 of Whittier California, was in the Navy but assigned as one of several corpsman to Kilo Battery.  There is a very special bond between the Navy corpsman and the marines.  The corpsman is responsible for quickly assessing a marine’s injuries, stabilizing them and preparing them for transport.  Many times their job is performed while under fire from the enemy. 

A couple of days prior to  Doc Noble’s death his convoy was escorting buses full of Iraqi soldiers.  The bus behind them was hit by an IED killing several Iraqi soldiers.  Doc Noble pulled several of the Iraqi soldiers to safety as he was being fired upon by insurgents.  Kilo battery came together quickly and took out the insurgents before they could cause any more harm.  Just another day of saving lives and protecting their brothers.

Daniel joined the Navy on October 4, 2005 following in the footsteps of his grandfather and godfather.  His uncle Kelly Thomas said his nephew had the wisdom of someone twice his age and said Daniel wasn’t concerned about joining the Navy at the height of the Iraq War.  “He just thought about helping people, “Thomas said.  “He had a true spirit of giving”.

Daniel was originally hoping to join the Seabees, but broke a hand just before he was scheduled to start basic training.  After recuperating, there were no Seabee openings so he made a quick decision to become a corpsman which he loved. 

LCPL John P. of Kilo Battery wrote of Doc Noble after his passing:

” I am very proud to have served by his side he was a great man and friend one that would do anything for anyone to make them feel better.

We the warriors of first platoon Kilo 3/12 miss you greatly but know that your in god’s kingdom now and wouldn’t want it any other way…you truly were a devil doc.  R.I.P. bro, I know I will see you again some day.  BY Tony Neria.
Mr Neria  maintains a   blog that updates family and friends   on the status of his son-in-law Samuel Nichols who was severely injuried    by the road side bomb that also killed Daniel Noble.

Noble or Nobility the kanji tattoo he  had above his heart
  One of the Traditional tests of faith  is when " the pure die Young".  A good friend of my children, Daniel was only 21, a few months short of his 22 birthday. He was one of the kindest most fun people we have ever met. I think he would have laughed and blushed   if anyone implied that he was "pure" in the holy sense. He always shrugged off praise.  He was a bright light in the world. He strove to live up to his name "Noble".  He even had the character for Noble or Nobility tattooed above his heart.  He had a great sense of humor and a sweetness  tinged with an irrepressible mischievous quality. He was quiet, soft spoken and patient.  Daniel reminded me of a fairy tale hero, humble, shy, funny, brave, helpful, human, real, in a way few are. It is amazing how many people this week have told me of some special memory they had of him. He was only 21 but he made a huge impact on many lives .

He could easily  have been cast as an elf in the LOTR. He was somewhat of a Knight Errant,  not a rescuer but a guide, who helped others to know that they could deal with their own Dragons , He was  6 foot7 or 8 ,blond with blue eyes , quick smiling , sensitive, complex ,kind , a prankster, a bit of a clown,a practical joker but  never cruel . My daughters met him in High School. 
He was the best of friends. My younger daughter   Nicole, said he was the only boy who was never afraid of her.  My middle daughter  Mara,  has  hearing challenges.  Daniel took the time to listen to her  and he drew her out and  encouraged her to speak  her mind and express herself. He   helped her discover  that she could  make her way and communicate comfortably with others in the mundane world .   
 After High School he wanted to help others and  have adventures. He   went into the Navy and became  a Medical Corpsman  was attached to a platoon of Marines   and On July 24th, in Iraq,  He was Killed .  This time has been filled with weeping and farewells and pageantry suitable for honors to fallen and with laughter and precious memories share among those who knew him. He  was buried Wednesday last ( August 1, 2007) . His family  had had  a wand and a small sword placed along with some other mementos within the coffin.

Daniel was funny, brave, kind, helpful, human, real, in a way few are. He made a huge impact on many lives. He was very tall, at least 6 foot 7 or 8 but he could still make himself blend in or even be invisible. He had to dip to get under a lot of door frames. He was blond with blue eyes, sensitive, complex, quick to smile, a prankster, kind and caring. He was not intimidated by anything except maybe crying girls. He played football, basketball and other sports in high School. He loved Paint ball and Karate. He collected Christmas Nutcrackers, liked Transformers, Anime, Dragons, scorpions and snakes. He loved motor bikes, swords and knives, He was passionate about his interests and beliefs, open minded and curious about all kinds of things. He liked to cook. He liked to watch movies. He liked to roughhouse and wrestle with friends, He was mischievous, he was serious about his work, He treasured his friendships. Many of his friends thought of him as a brother. He was always there when a friend needed him. He had a small tattoo of the Kanji character for Noble (Nobility or Honor) above his heart. He seemed wiser than his years and had good sense and compassion.
nobility, similar to the tattoo he had above his heart

I know that Daniel now Lives  within the realms  of spirit, Should you meet him in your dreams or travels or when you too cross into those other realms , Let me commend him to you, Give him welcome,  As a true friend
and  an Honorable knight

The military honors were very moving. This was only the second funeral my husband has attended since he got out of the Army 1n 1971 when he attended hundreds of services at the San Francisco National Cemetery most of which had no one attending other than the chaplain and military honors group.

Several hundred people attended Daniels' funeral, After which, a procession was formed to take him to his final resting place
We ended up only about a block or two back in the funeral procession from the chapel to the Grave site military honors location. As we approached the gate we could see the beginning of the procession with police escorts ,The Transport with Daniels' remains, limos with family the military and the over 30 Patriot riders motorcycle honor guard as they turned left out of the memorial park main gate onto the street. We looked behind us back up the curving climbing road over a mile back to the chapel and could see that their were still many cars that had not yet left the parking area and probably more that were not visible behind the curve of the hill . Were were   moved by the respect and honor shown to Daniel by all those people.

Before he left for Iraq, I had actually had a brief conversation with Daniel about death,  mostly he wanted to know what he might do in a spiritual way if and when he was attending someone who was passing. While it was not something he expected, spiritually he was ready for that "adventure" too if it came,  he accepted  risk as part of the job.  ( perhaps this will be too mystic and "woo woo" for some..  but  I am quite certain that when he crossed he did so easily and went into the light  making sure that the others also crossed  with him too.

  Daniel always was a hero, it was as much a part of his self as was being tall and blond. While the future is not immutable and we all have many possible life paths  I believe that we  come into this life with a purpose, with lessons  to learn and missions to accomplish. While we all deeply Mourn the Loss to ourselves here in the mundane world, and even though we cannot understand why this happened from our limited view from here .   I truly believe that  Daniel left at this time because he had completed his mission on the physical plane and  God has other work for him now.  He was and is truly a great spirit and continues to watch over "his" Marines and those he loved. 

Now he is gone from this plane but recall that the spirit is a great thing and time the physical world is an illusion we who have chosen to live for a while in this plane are hiding our true greatness from ourself. We grieve deeply for our loss  even though we know that we were among the blessed to have ever encountered such a bright, funny, complex being even briefly . When we too step from our shells it willbe as though  no time has passed and we will be with  him, this great spirit , again.
 I was thinking about what memory to share with his family but was not really able to decide on one. I noticed that whenever anyone who knew Daniel thinks about him or speaks about him  the first thing they do is smile, They may cry  or look sad now,  but the first thing they do is to look way up where  his face would be were he here, and smile. even the one person I know who did not like Daniel, or  rather who tried not to like Daniel, cannot think about him without smiling.


Hospital corpsman pledge

"I solemnly pledge myself before God and these witnesses to practice faithfully all of my duties as a member of the Hospital Corps. I hold the care of the sick and injured to be a privilege and a sacred trust and will assist the Medical Officer with loyalty and honesty. I will not knowingly permit harm to come to any patient. I will not partake of nor administer any unauthorized medication. I will hold all personal matters pertaining to the private lives of patients in strict confidence. I dedicate my heart, mind and strength to the work before me. I shall do all within my power to show in myself an example of all that is honorable and good throughout my naval career."
dnheropicBeing a  Medical Corpsman a "Devil Doc"  seemed to perfectly suit his nature ,spirit and abilities.
We know that Daniel loved being "Doc Noble ".  He cared about his Marines.
We know that he continues  to watch over  them.  He will be there should any fall   to see that they reach their   true home in the light. He will work with the angels  to heal whenever and wherever he can.

Your Life Path Number is 9
Your purpose in life is to make the world better

You are very socially conscious and a total idealist.
You think there are many things wrong with the world, and you want to fix them.
You have a big idea of how the world could be, and you'll sacrifice almost anything to work toward this dream.

In love, you can easily see the beauty in someone else. And you never cling too tightly.

You are capable of great love, but it's hard for you to focus your love on one person or relationship.

“There is no person more respectedand loved by Marines than their “Doc” - their Corpsman who shares the hardship and misery of combat to save Marines lives, sometimes sacrificing their own. Navy Corpsman are true hero’s to all of us who wore the Marine uniform” Lt Gen. Michael A. Hough, USMC (Ret), Former Deputy Commandant of Aviation

"Doc" Noble was a fast learner who quickly became proficient as a corpsman. As a corpsman the title Doc must be earned. Noble accomplished this quickly because he was always right behind his Marines. He was selfless and always wore a smile on his face."

Daniel seemed to Know all the ancient codes ( perhaps from the games and  movies)  He knew the Noble virtues and the Code of Chivalry and the Bushido  code  etc.
  Live to serve King and Country. Live to defend Crown and Country and all it holds dear. Live one's life so that it is worthy of respect and honor. Live for freedom, justice and all that is good. Never attack an unarmed foe. Never use a weapon on an opponent not equal to the attack. Never attack from behind. Avoid lying to your fellow man. Avoid cheating. Avoid torture. Obey the law of king, country, and chivalry. Administer justice. Protect the innocent. Exhibit self control. Show respect to authority. Respect women. Exhibit Courage in word and deed. Defend the weak and innocent. Destroy evil in all of its monstrous forms. Crush the monsters that steal our land and rob our people. Fight with honor. Avenge the wronged. Never abandon a friend, ally, or noble cause. Fight for the ideals of king, country, and chivalry. Die with valor. Always keep one's word of honor. Always maintain one's principles. Never betray a confidence or comrade. Avoid deception. Respect life and freedom. Die with honor. Exhibit polite and attentive. Be respectful of host, women, and honor. Loyalty to country, King, honor, freedom, and the code of chivalry.  
Loyalty to one's friends and those who lay their trust in thee.
  Daniel at High Schoolfrom high school
daniel and my girlsDaniel Noble
,         Daniel and my daughters Mara  and Nicole in back

Daniel driving  taken in marchat the airport  Daniel in  Iraq behind Sgt. Robles Memorial card


A poem or something

Memories resurfacing like a wave in a sea.
How you are
How you were.
Joy and laughter
Tears and uncertainty
So many things uncertain.
So many things known
Sweet memories of you, of Him.
How he loved to taunt that Dragon of mine.
Seasons change, leaves fall.
You left to find yourself out there in the world.
I chose a different path
Our paths crossed here and there.
like a sweet Dream
We never said good bye
and I will see you around here and there
Everywhere and in Everything.
life goes on
Seasons change
Paths wind and turn on to Roads unseen.
paths call
So many things Known
So many things unknown
In the world of mine.

Inspired by
Daniel S. Noble
a good friend
by Mara Jentoft  8-10-07

Letting go


Missing you is the easy thing I can do, letting you go is the hardest thing for me to do.

I had to let you go so I can watch you fly away with your wings and go to your new home.

Missing you with all my heart is so easy because you are always in my thoughts.

Loving you was the greatest thing in my life, for with you around life was nothing but happiness.

Now trying to live without you will have to come slowly, for my heart does not want to believe you are gone.

My mind tells my heart to believe it, but I just cannot understand why it had to be you.

Missing you is the easy thing I can do, letting you go is the hardest thing for me to do.

I had to let you go so I can watch you fly away with your wings and go to your new home.

Missing you with all my heart is so easy because you are always in my thoughts.

Loving you was the greatest thing in my life, for with you around life was nothing but happiness.

Just knowing your safe and watching over me with all the other angels is helping me understand I need to let go.

Letting go of you will have to come slowly, because loving you is still what I want to do.

I will meet you one day in heaven and there we will live in peace and harmony.

Just promise me you will wait for me at the golden gates with my wings
 and a great big smile and I will be  O.K. enough to let you go.

Until then I will hold on to your love and memories for safety.

 July 25, 2007

Written by: Mary Angela Arreola, jr

Navy and Marine achievment medalOn July 7th 2007, Doc Noble's convoy was escorting buses full of Iraqi soldiers. The bus ahead of them was hit by an IED killing and wounding several Iraqi soldiers. Daniel got out of his vehicle and ran through the kill zone to treat wounded Iraqi soldiers who had been hit by small arms fire. Doc Noble pulled several of the Iraqi soldiers to safety and treated them as he was being fired upon by insurgents. He has been awarded the Navy and Marines Achievement Medal with "combat distinguishing device" which is a little "v" pin for this superior performance of his duties. His mother has received his medal from the Navy.

Navy certificate  of award

A tribute page to celebrate the life and memory of Daniel Noble On My Space
A blog  on the status of Sgt. Samuel Nichols
ho was severely injured by the road side bomb that also killed Daniel Noble and three others.

These are the others who were killed at the same time as Daniel Noble.  Lance Cpl. Robert A. Lynch, USMC: 20,  from Louisville Kentucky, Corporal Matthew Zindars, USMC:21  Watertown, Wisconsin and  Corporal James Heath McRae, USMC: 22, from  Springtown, North Texas.

Some gave All

banners by Chelle and Heart of a Hero designs

  Fallen Brothers

Here are a few words about each of these men.

Corporal James Heath McRae USMC,
Heath McRae was that friend who was always sacrificing his self for other people, usually to get the laugh at any cost. As his Drum Major in the Springtown High School band, and as his friend (and chauffer home after many practices & school days), I grew to know and love Heath as a brother. When he made the decision to go into the Marines, I knew he would serve brilliantly as both a leader and a brother. The stories I've heard of his service accurately reflect the Heath I knew (always making people laugh, his deadpan face in light of the most hilarious of circumstances), and his ability to incorporate fun into whatever he did. The world truly lost a great soul when Heath passed on 7-24-07 and many people will greatly miss him for who he was.
from Marcia

Corporal Matthew Zindars, USMC
Age 21 from Watertown, Wisconsin Matthew graduated from Watertown High School in 2004. He joined the Marines at age 18 while he was still in school. An outdoor-loving former football player, Cpl. Zindars liked snowboarding, rock climbing and hunting. He also loved weight-lifting in his spare time. His father Ken Zindars said his son was “the salt of the earth”. “He was a great kid and never gave us any trouble”. He said his son always wanted to be in the military and was “pretty proud to be a Marine.” Matthew volunteered for a second tour in Iraq because all his Marine buddies were going back and he wanted to be there for them.

Lance Cpl. Robert A. Lynch, USMC

Lance Cpl. Robert A. Lynch, USMC age 20, was from Louisville Kentucky. Robert graduated from Seneca High School in 2005 and school officials spoke highly of him. “He was a hero for us,” Michael McWilliams, a counselor at Seneca, told The (Louisville) Courier-Journal. He did a lot of things for us and a lot for our ROTC program. “Robbie was a little bit of a jokester. He put a smile on your face, but when it came time to get something done, he was the first to jump in and stand shoulder to shoulder with you,” said retired Marine Col. Richard Maloney, who taught Lynch in ROTC courses at the school. “My Brother was the biggest Hero this REAL world has seen. He wanted to fight for our freedom, he asked to go on the mission he was on when he died. My bro always did what he had to do no matter the danger. I just want to tell everyone that the word ‘HERO’ is not used enough for the ones that don’t come home.” He was our HERO on earth Now He’s God’s Hero. Randall C. Lynch (brother)

From" Nate" July 31 2007
I'm glad I was able to know these guys. Something they all had in common was that it was rare to see them without a smile on their faces, and it was quite contagious. Doc ( Daniel) especially frequently made me laugh. He was like 8 feet tall and every inch of it good natured. That's why I always called him the jolly blue giant. Zindars,  shared one of my own ambitions; to be a pirate when he grew up. He didn't have to be out here on this deployment. He came out with Golf Battery last year and nobody would have given it a second thought had he opted to stay with his boys in Golf. Lynch cracked me up just a couple nights before he died when he showed me his beat boxing skills. I suppose I should put that in its proper context. It was an unexpected skill for him to have just by looking at him.....he was pushing a hundred pounds and was the epitome of the term "white boy." I heard some great stories today about McRae, like the time someone jokingly told him he should put the pressure washer in his mouth, which he then did, and couldn't speak for like a week after that....they couldn't even give him pain killers because he wasn't able to swallow them. I saw a video of him beating the everloving crap out of some random piece of electronics. All 4 of these guys touched all our lives significantly and I am proud to have served with them and even more so simply to have known them.
by a Marine from Kilo Battery

We know that they all have crossed into the corridors of light and are at peace. We offer prayers and energy for their family, loved ones, friends and comrades
and for the protection of all who serve in the military and all others who  strive to protect   freedom  and human rights.



A tribute page to celebrate the life and memory of Daniel Noble On My Space
A blog  on the status of Sgt. Samuel Nichols
ho was severely injured by the road side bomb that also killed Daniel Noble and three others.

A few words about Daniel Noble
Remarks  from his friends, relatives and comrades.
a few words about Daniel Noble


Sunday, November 11 2007. Veterans Day weekend, Hn Daniel Nobles Birthday

..Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket">

Veterans Day would have been Daniel Nobles twenty second birthday . We were invited by some members of his family to visit him with them at the Garden of Valor at Rose Hills Cemetery. His family and friends left flowers and his mother placed a birthday balloon upon the grave. We also visited the Navy memorial in a nearby section of the memorial park.
Then we went to a Veterans Day commemoration held by the City of La Mirada outside at the City Center. Many of Daniels' family members and several of his closest friends and other friends were able to attend. On Sunday the City official had the names of all those from La Mirada who have been killed in Action in all wars   read aloud ending with the addition of Daniels' name  and a moment of silence.
Daniel went to school in La Mirada and his name has been added to the eternal flame monument outside the City hall. After this commemoration most of the Noble family and friends went to his family home and had Daniels favorite cake and ice cream. Daniels friends roughhouse and did some of the things they used to do with Daniel . It was not a party but briefly one could feel what it it was like when Daniel was there.

On Monday evening the City of la Mirada held their fifth annual Salute to Veterans at the Performing Arts Center. In addition to musical performances and speeches by local dignitaries and Brigadier General James P. Combs there was a slide show presentation which included a recognition of Daniel Nobles' service and sacrifice and a moment of silence for all the fallen...

There are many different ways of remembering and honoring the fallen

memory board

Here are a few ways  Daniel was remembered on the anniversary   of his passing
many people sent comments to his family or posted in the guestbook

The more impact someone had on you the more you miss them and that is just in ordinary circumstances with ordinary people.  One of the more common comments on the tribute site is that they still don't really believe it. More than one person  has said they keep expecting him to show up a with a  big   grin.
He made us laugh, he made us smile. Some  who saw him but had  never spoken  with him report that they felt great peace  from his presence. Even when he was cranky ,or sad, or bored, or angry,  he still inspired,  amused, startled.  Some remember the child , Some the youth and Some met the man he was so briefly . Always wise beyond his years,  always  adventurous.  He had to be big to hold his great soul .
  He still lives within us all who knew him even a little   and we hope that we  may pass some of the joy and wisdom and wildness he took in life  on to others.We miss him and  we  are more kind, we consider  others more we know that we laugh more and are better people because we knew him.

On July 24th  Mrs Noble took us to Rose Hills Garden of Valor to visit Daniel at his resting place and mark the first year of his passing. We shared memories and stories of Daniels life and walked through the surrounding Gardens. Mrs Noble had been earlier with her other children. Many other family members and friends also visited during that day and over the weekend,  some left flowers and notes. 
That Evening the Noble family and a very small number of Daniels' closest  friends  gathered and had a private dinner  with some of  Daniels' favorite foods.
I'm not sure if they really  did have a water balloon fight or not, Daniel Loved Water balloon fights  and  they seem to be almost essential to remembering him. Some friends also lit candles in memory at their homes.  There were also gatherings among friends and military comrades in honor of  all of those who had fallen on that day. That weekend  Mrs Noble and Katlin and Andrew  went to a Navy Picnic at the base where Daniels' Casualty officer works . Mrs Noble had arranged for Dreyers Ice Cream Company to donate hundreds of Popsicles in honor of Daniel . The family also visited one of Daniels favorite beaches the next week.

from Rick Aug 15 2008 Miss you buddy!!
Kilo is in Japan right now on the 31st MEU. We never stop thinking about you and our other fallen. We had a memorial dinner at the staff club for you and we just talked about how much of a great guy and Corpsman you were. We miss you more than anything and hope your peaceful. I thank you everyday buddy and my wife and newborn daughter. My family will always be in debt to you and know who you are and what youe did for our family and country. I miss you buddy and we'll wrestle each other again someday like we did in iraq on the catwalks. Always thinking about you man.

       August 14, 2008
    i pass by your picture everyday, we hung one of you in the BAS. you may be gone but you will never be forgotten at 1st LAR.
       HM3 Threadgill (Camp Pendleton, CA)

On August 9th at 9:30 AM, Nicole and Allen Jentoft-Haining  had a baby boy Robert Daniel Jentoft-Haining  His middle name is in honor of Daniel Noble
The Hospital Corpsman Memorial Dedication Ceremony at the Field Medical Training Battalion, West,
corp1A corpsman removes his cover and kneels to pay respect to his fallen comrades represented by 39 kevlars, riffles and pairs of boots. 39 dog tags hang from each small memorial in honor of the men and women who selflessly gave their lives.  Photo By, Cpl. Gabriela Gonzalez on 10/02/2008

Marines and sailors bow their heads in respect during the invocation for the Hospital Corpsman Memorial Dedication Ceremony at the Field Medical Training Battalion, West, Friday.
Photo By, Cpl. Gabriela Gonzalez on 10/02/2008

The Hospital Corpsman Memorial Dedication Ceremony at the Field Medical Training Battalion, West, was held  Friday.  September 26 ,2008
 Hn Daniel Nobles' Mother,  brother , sister, Grandparents and other  family members were able to attend .  Funds raised for the memorial included Donations from The Noble  Fund   given in memory of HN Daniel Noble

A note From Julie Noble

. It was a very nice ceremony. Hard to sit through at times.  All the guest military speakers had lost a Corpsman being honored. And they all had to compose themselves during their speeches.
 The marker is very pretty, simple to the point. Daniel was one of 39 names on the marker. He was the 30th lost. 2 more since him, and 7 who were Corpsman who were currently doing other jobs in the Navy, in country. There were one or two other families there.  And I would say a couple of hundred Navy and Marines. I’m sure the current Corpsman Field Med classes were there.  The Field Med School building has been renovated, and looks very nice.  I got to spend some time mostly listening to Daniel’s Commander from Iraq, and a couple of Daniel’s teachers from field med school.  There is a picture of Daniel and a few other hanging in the hall.  They are in the field standing or crawling in the picture. His teacher remembered the class and that Daniel was in the picture.  He committed that it was a really good class. He hadn’t had one like it since.

October 02, 2008
Hospital Corpsman Memorial Unveiled
By, Cpl. Gabriela Gonzalez

          The I Marine Expeditionary Force Petty Officer 1st Class Association held a ceremony for the Hospital Corpsmen Memorial dedicated to Navy corpsman killed in action since March 2002 at the Field Medical Training Battalion West, Sept. 26.
          The granite monument bearing the 39 names of the honored was made possible through car washes, T-shirt sales, donations from around the country, barbeques and special events held by the 1st Class Association.
More than $9,000 was raised in three years to make this memorial possible, said Petty Officer 1st Class Christopher L. Johnson, a hospital corpsman and comrade of those inscribed on the memorial.
“For over 110 years the Navy corpsman has been a beacon of strength and a pillar of compassion to his brother Marine,” said retired Lt. Col. Scott C. Shuster, who served alongside two of the corpsman being honored.
Each hero was honored for their ultimate sacrifice during a bell ceremony where a fellow corpsman placed a dog tag with each of the fallens' name on a Kevlar, rifle and boot memorial.
The 1st Class Association wanted the memorial to appropriately honor the fallen, stand the test of time, and be displayed somewhere special to the Fleet Marine Force corpsman.
Field Medical Training Battalion, where the transformation from Navy blue to Marine Corps green begins, made the most appropriate location on Camp Pendleton for the memorial, said Christopher Johnson.
           Petty Officer 2nd Class Michael Van Johnson, a hospital corpsman, died in Iraq on March 25, 2003 after being thrown from his vehicle by a rocket propelled grenade. Christopher Johnson said he thought his world had come to an end when he found his friend dead.
 “Up until that point in my career, I had never lost a patient, never lost another corpsman and definitely never lost a friend,” he added, remembering his friend.
The fallen will look down, from wherever they are today, and know their memory will live on in the hearts and minds of all who train to become green-side corpsman, he said.
 “For this generation and those of the future, this memorial will stand here with its simple dignity and profound meaning to those who aspire to be called ‘Doc’,” Johnson said.

I shall not walk in your footsteps,
but I will walk by your side.
I shall not walk in your image,
I’ve earned my own title of pride.
We’ve answered the call together,
on sea and foreign land.
When the cry for help was given,
I’ve been there right at hand.
Whether I am on the ocean
or in the jungle wearing greens,
Giving aid to my fellow man,
be it Sailors or Marines.
So the next time you see a corpsman
and you think of calling him "squid",
think of the job he’s doing
as those before him did.
And if you ever have to go out there
and your life is on the block,
Look at the one right next to you...
I’m the one called "Doc".
Harry D. Penny, Jr. HMC (AC)USN
Copyright 1975

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