There was a fire in a highrise home for the elderly in Washington, D.C., recently in an area not far from the White House. The Marines of the Marine Barracks at 8th and I, who generally serve a wide variety of ceremonial duties in and around D.C., heard the alarms going off near those barracks and, without hesitation they ran to the danger.
This was covered on the national news and portrayed these Marines as heroes. This is a moniker that is all too easily thrown around these days. Those Marines are not heroes; they are Marines. They did what Marines do, what they are trained to do.
This is their character. It is bred into them from the first day of boot camp. It is their habit.
They were simply doing what they were trained to do.
They arrived before the fire department arrived and were told that there were still people in the building that were either too old to move quickly enough, or disabled and could not get themselves out on their own. The Marines went into the building all the way up to the fourth floor where the fire was burning and carried several people out.
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No one perished in that fire as a result of their quick action.
They did not have the protective gear that the fireman have. They had their cammies and boots on. They did not hesitate to help those in need.
This is the Marine Corps ethic. And these Marines lived it well that day.
The Veterans Site sends its thanks to the Marines of the Marine Barracks at 8th and I in Washington, D.C. You honored the code of Semper Fidelis.
OooRah. You’re the best.
Dan Doyle is a husband, father, grandfather, Vietnam veteran, and retired professor of Humanities at Seattle University. He taught 13 years at the high school level and 22 years at the university level. He spends his time now babysitting his granddaughter. He is a poet and a blogger as well. Dan holds an AA degree in English Literature, a BA in Comparative Literature, and an MA in Theology, and writes regularly for The Veterans Site Blog.