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Navy Hospital Corps celebrates birthday

Lt. Cmdr. Charles Goodson, officer in charge of the Naval Branch Health Clinic at Marine Corps Logistics Base-Albany, stands outside the clinic adjacent to an antique anchor dedicated on Friday. The Navy Hospital Corps marks its 114th year Sunday.

Lt. Cmdr. Charles Goodson, officer in charge of the Naval Branch Health Clinic at Marine Corps Logistics Base-Albany, stands outside the clinic adjacent to an antique anchor dedicated on Friday. The Navy Hospital Corps marks its 114th year Sunday.

MCLB-ALBANY — The bravery of U.S. Marine Corps servicemembers has been fortified with the presence of the hospital corpsmen who might be called upon to save their lives on the battlefield.

These unsung heroes are now celebrating a milestone.

The Naval Branch Health Clinic aboard Marine Corps Logistics Base-Albany hosted a celebration Friday to recognize the 114th anniversary of the Navy Hospital Corps, ahead of Sunday’s actual anniversary date and to honor the accomplishments of a few of their own.

In addition, a “legacy gift” was dedicated near the clinics’ doors.

After some words were shared about the World War II corpsman for whom the Albany clinic was dedicated, Pharmacist’s Mate 2nd Class John Henry Bradley, anecdotes were shared telling of the “fox hole surgeries” corpsmen have had to perform on the battlefield while putting themselves in harm’s way to attend to Marines, even though they have had to go into the line of fire unarmed.

“Some corpsmen are on ships, on submarines or on land, but we all come from the same mission,” said Chief Petty Officer Justin Haugland, senior enlisted leader of the Albany clinic. “We fix and repair, not attack — but we do go side-by-side with Marines. What you can save today is incredible compared (to available resources) from World War II.

“All the Marines go a little faster because they have corpsmen by their side.”

Also on Friday outside the clinic, the Navy Achievement Medal was presented to Petty Officer 3rd Class Brett Turano for his recent service in Afghanistan. Meanwhile, promotions were given to corpsmen Lamon Murdock and Steve David — who now hold the ranks of petty officer third class and petty officer first class, respectively.

The “legacy gift” was an antique anchor. Nothing is known about the anchor’s history, although most experts have said that it is 150-200 years old, officials at the clinic say.

“The anchor was chosen because it represents strength and security,” said Haugland.

The Navy Hospital Corps was officially formed on June 17, 1898. There were several high-ranking officials issuing statements this week to acknowledge the 114th anniversary of the “Warrior Docs,” including Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy Rick D. West.

“... From their beginnings in the Continental Navy to today’s Overseas Contingency Operations, Corpsmen have served in every major battle, performing courageously on the front lines and assisting their fellow warriors in any way possible,” the statement read. “You are an exceptional group of men and women, whose dedication to duty and willingness to put others before self is evident throughout your heroic history. Loblolly Boy, Bayman, Doc ... the name may have changed several times, but the pride and professionalism have remained constant. Whether you are providing top-notch health care at home, under way and abroad, or life-saving treatment on the battlefield, you are a vital part of our Navy and Marine Corps team.

“To the thousands of Hospital Corpsmen who serve our great Navy, I am extremely proud of each and every one of you for answering the call to duty and for your benevolent service to those in your care. I have seen firsthand that you take your Hospital Corpsman’s pledge to heart and ‘hold the care of the sick and injured to be a privilege and a sacred trust’ ...”

Comments

waltspecht 2 years, 3 months ago

"Corpsman UP" A call I hope I never hear again. Plus one our President mispronounced because he never knew what it meant. How many lives these folks have saved will never be known. Did you know one of the Flag-raisers on Iwo Jima was a Corpsman? (Pronounced Corman, not Corpseman) Can you even imagine how many Medals Corpsman and Medics hold? Plus they are deserving of a lot more of them. Happy Birthday, and Hand Salute from this old Veteran.

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agirl_25 2 years, 3 months ago

Found this online, Walt.........."Be they assigned to hospital ships, reservist installations, recruiter offices, or Marine Corps combat units, the rating of Hospital Corpsman is the most decorated in the United States Navy with 22 Medals of Honor, 174 Navy Crosses, 31 Distinguished Service Medals, 946 Silver Stars, and 1,582 Bronze Stars.[5] Twenty naval ships have been named after hospital corpsmen."

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waltspecht 2 years, 3 months ago

On March 18, 2012 William R. Charette HMCM (SS) passed. He was interrd in the National Cemetary, Bushnell, Florida. He was the last living Submariner to have held custody of a Medal of Honor. He earned it serving with Co. F, 2nd Bat, 7th Marines, 1st Marine Div. in Korea. He served our Country for 26 years. Does anyone even remember a filler article about his passing? Any mention on the Media at all? I don't.

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agirl_25 2 years, 3 months ago

I don't recall an article anyplace other than the Navy Times News (http://www.navytimes.com/news/2012/03/marine-medal-of-honor-recipient-william-charette-dies-031912/) and I am sure the Lake Wales, Florida local obits paper. The Military Times (also has a nice article and updated photo (http://militarytimes.com/blogs/hall-of-valor/2012/03/19/medal-of-honor-corpsman-passes/). Always brings a lump to my throat and tears to my eyes. I am so proud to have spent my whole life as part of the military, born into a military family and married to a military man. I still have as one of my most prized possessions my retirement certificate, I got when my husband had his retirement ceremony, I got my certificate too!!

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rock 2 years, 3 months ago

if it was not for a Navy Corpsman, I would not be here today!!!! He was not only my platoons corpsman, he was my friend and will be remembered forever.

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