Gentleman Jim, Our Eagle
An Eagle fell from the sky today and the sun stood still.
The shrill wind howled in the clear blue sky,
as heavy mist fogged the eye. Some wondered why
til the message arrived, then many silently cried.
The wires rang with sadness and sorrow
as the much feared word went forth,
"Gentleman Jim," our Eagle,
was now outward bound from this earth.
We who spent our life there 50 year ago or more,
stood rock steady as we started to recall.
Quigley's voice resoundingly strong
while he and Doc C locked an eye.
Mac sounded off with a message so loud
that it cleared to the azure sky
"Black Bud 6 sends his respects, Sir,
and requests your presense soonest;
don't bother bringing your gear."
On the eve of our Commanders passing,
just a few short days ago
in the stillness of the mid-watch,
where some Marines are want go!
Twas then our Eagle went swooping
down as the word went quickly about,
"The Eagle was out!" Where
nothing escaped his sharp glances or sharper eye.
Neither did deserving Marines escape
a heartfelt thanks as he moved on down the line.
In the later years when asked
by those not privileged to be there
What did you learn from your Commander, Lad,
that was held so close and dear?
The answer to that one was easy,
"That when in the company of your Marines
and killing times are near, nothing is
more important than not outwardly showing fear!
And so, what we all learned
from this impressive man,
was to righteously understand,
that the fortunes of war may wobble a bit,
but to Marines, the mission is first
and if you fall while in the attack
you will not be left behind.
Your mates will have your back.
Care deeply for your Marines, remembering if you do,
they will fix bayonets, sling their packs and follow you.
How well I remember, as I was dismissed---
thinking, I have just been shown the way.
Things might be looking up
for our blessed Nation and her Warriors on this day.
Gentleman Jim's Marine heritage was born and bred
deep in the South. His nickname "Gentleman Jim" deceived,
cause like the Eagle, he moved swiftly about,
going forward of the battle line when the guns were swung around.
Thus, his Eagle eyes and attitude kept many of us alive.
So, as he now speeds outbound
to assume his last command,
where he will link up with David,
that Lion of a Man,
there they will each hold
til our last wave touches down.
So hold tight Colonels Dave and Jim;
for Charlie and the Gunny are moving
fast to meet you and they are almost there.
Bravo and the Captain,
with the squads of Jake, Mike and Wiese.
The Doc, Britt, and Rash,
with the rest following in trace.
On the high ground our flag will be planted
as we rest at Fiddlers Green
where we will be awaiting the landing
of the next wave of battle scarred Marines.
It is time to shut this down, now.
It all seems like an endless dream.
As we scan the ranks and read the Clay
it becomes patiently clear this day
it won't be long until we will have more men
there than we have here!
We miss each of our brothers, but know it won't be long
til we muster to share a few rounds of beer
with "Gentleman Jim" our Eagle!
Ken Pipes, Assisted/Advised by:
Major Larry Luther (881), Sergeant Major Morris (USMC), Sergeant Mike O'Hara (Bravo), Corporal Ken Rodgers (Bravo), and Lieutenant Derek Clark, San Diego Sheriff's Department (Ret)