My buddy, hero

To the Editor:

I entered the U.S. Marine Corps with one of the bravest men I ever knew.

We went through boot camp together, and after boot camp, he was assigned to a combat company. He was instructed to operate a machine gun. After several weeks of advanced training, he was assigned to a combat company fighting in Korea.

One day before he left the training company, I asked him had he tried to get reassigned to another duty – not one that was as dangerous as a machine gunner. He said, “I joined the Marines to fight for my country, and I am proud of my assignment.”

He went to Korea, fought on a line company, and made it back home.

He never received a medal for his valor, and only his fellow Marines know what a hero Richard Garrelts was.

I am proud to say he was a buddy and my hero.

Walt Kalemba