3 January 2013

With the new year, I decided to see how The Butter-Cutter survived the holidays. On walking-up to the Chow Line in the Virtual Mess Hall, a Marine, who was speaking to him, suddenly said that he would talk to him later and left. “Did I interrupt something important?” I asked.

“We were talkin’ ‘bout the f***-ups on the Chesty monument. It’s been in the Marine Corps Times paper ‘n’ on their web site,” he answered.

“Yes. But I am sure the Marine Corps League and the Museum will correct the obvious discrepancies,” I said.

“Oh, yeah?” The Butter-Cutter intoned. “When didja post that Appeal thing ta change the holster on the monument ta look like the one he carried in every war he fought?”

“Ah . . . 11 December,” I answered.

“Better yet, when didja post a note ta all them heavies involved in puttin’-up the statue--the sculptor, the Museum, ‘n’ the League?”

“Oh, that went out last year on 26 November,” I explained.

“’n’ what did they say?”

I was beginning to feel as though I was under interrogation. But, I answered anyway, “Only the Museum replied saying, in effect, the sculptor would appreciate my observations.”

“That’s it? Over a month . . . ‘n’ the only thing them people said was, ‘Thanks, but no thanks!’?” The Butter-Cutter responded with a sneer.

“You are distorting the response I received. I’m sure the monument will be fixed to reflect his true likeness,” I asserted further.  

“There ya go again, Officer-Type, talkin’ like a man with a paper ass-hole. They ain’t gonna do diddly squat! ‘n’, ya know why? Cuz, Chesty’s holster ain’t Politically Correct ‘n’ the one already on the statue is a government-issue Politically Correct holster!” he shot back. 

“Don’t be ridicules. These are Marines and Marines are always amenable to rational arguments such as I posted in my note to them,” I countered.

“Oh, man! That might o’ been what it was like when you were in uniform; but today, with this Commandant, it’s all about that PC shit. Wake up Man!”

This conversation had become another exercise in frustration and I groped for a way to change its thrust when he continued.

“Ya don’t believe me? Then how come they did what that Lieutenant General LeJeune wanted on his monument ‘n’ they didn’t do what Lieutenant General Puller wanted on his monument?’ he asked.

Lieutenant General LeJeune? I thought, “What are you talking about?”

“That LeJeune . . . ship’s bell monument next ta the Museum chapel; it says under his name, ‘Pronounced: luh-jern.’ This guy got some Louisiana Creole way o’ sayin’ his name ‘n’ them Museum pukes said, ‘Yes Sir! We’ll put that on yer monument so everybody Creoles yer name jest like ya want it!’ What the f***? Does his ghost ring that freakin’ bell when somebody screws it up? Anyhow, when it came time ta do Chesty’s monument ‘n’ his personal holster that he said he wanted to be shown with, they said, ‘No way, José! That holster is a non-Politically Correct holster!’ Now, tell me, how come?”

I was at a loss to explain it.

“Well don’t worry ‘bout it! We’re gonna fix that statue,” he said before I could come up with something.

“What? What do you mean by that? Are you going to change the holster?” I asked.

“Nope! Only the sculptor can do that. Remember that guy I was talkin’ ta when ya came in? Well, we were talkin’ ‘bout this group called, ‘Marines Fer PC’. We . . .”

“Wait a minute!” I interrupted. “One minute you are denigrating Political Correctness, now you want to champion it?”

“This Commandant wants us all ta do his PC shit, so we’re gonna give 'im MARINE PC, ‘Marines Fer Promotin” Chesty!’”

“Huh . . . What?” I said.

“They f***ed-up the holster ‘n’ they f***ed-up HIS RANK TOO! The statue ain’t got no stars on the collars. So, it's a statue o' PRIVATE Puller, not LIEUTENANT GENERAL Puller! That’s what Marines Fer PC are gonna fix!”

“Oh, come on,” I groaned. “The statue’s pedestal is inscribed, ‘Lieutenant General’ for all to see! Why are you making such a big deal about the lack of stars on his collars?”

"YOU don’t remember shit! ALL Marines, except one, wear rank insignia on their uniforms--‘n’, ya can bet yer sweet ever luvin’ ass that the ones that don't ain’t GENERALS! The ONLY Marine that don’t wear a rank insignia is a PRIVATE! Since Chesty’s statue don’t got no rank insignia, that says ta everybody that looks at it: ‘I am a PRIVATE!’”

“OK! OK! I understand that. But, . . .” he cut me off to ask.

“On that Chesty portrait yer class gave ta The Basic School back in ‘66, did it have stars on his collars?”

Oh, &^$#@*, he has me by the short-hairs. “Yes! Yes! Yes!” I answered in frustration. "The portrait was done as he directed and he was there for the unveiling and, later, brought Mrs. Puller to see it. As far as I know, it is the only portrait of him that was composed with his personal involvement. Now, how do you plan on . . . ‘promoting’ him?”

“All we gotta do is buy a pair o’ them three-star insignias; clip off the pins that stick through a cloth shirt collar; getta tube o’ Instant Krazy Glue; climb the statue; glue ‘em on the statue’s collars; ‘n’, OORAH, CHESTY IS A LIEUTENANT GENERAL AGAIN!” 

“I am not sure which article of the UCMJ it falls under; but, I assure you, doing what you just described could result in a Court Martial and Brig-time.” I warned The Butter-Cutter.

“MAAAN, I didn’t say I, me, was gonna do it! This mission’s been sent-out as a Marine-ta-Marine ALLMAR. It’s there fer any active, reserve, discharged, or retired enlisted-Marine ta pick-up ‘n’ do it! The only down-side ta this is: Whoever does ‘do it’ is gonna have ta stay secret er, like ya said, some ass-kissing %$#@*&% will try ta bust ‘im! But, I’ll tell ya this: Whoever does do it gets put in The Butter-Cutter Hall Of Fame with a picture o’ the statue with stars.”
“There is another ‘down-side’ to your bizarre plot. The Museum will not allow those stars to remain on the statue. Within minutes after discovery, they will be removed rendering all this hanky-panky futile?”

“We thought o’ that. If they bust 'im again, another Marine will promote 'im again. No matter how many times they demote 'im, a Marine will step forward 'n' promote 'im!”

This whole thing is the paragon of arrogance, I thought. So, I demanded of The Butter-Cutter,  “What makes you and these . . . ‘Marines For PC’ think you have the right to invade the grounds of the NATIONAL MUSEUM of the MARINE CORPS and change the monument of the greatest Marine that ever lived to your personal liking?” 

“Maan, YOU . . . jest . . . don’t . . . get . . . it!” he said as he shook his head from side to side. “When Chesty was promoted ta lieutenant general, he had an enlisted man, Sergeant Major Robert L. Norrish, pin on his stars. He did that ta show his loyalty ta us enlisted-types. 67 years later, some officer-type comes around ‘n’ decides he don’t deserve them stars ‘n’ busts 'im ta private. Now's our chance . . . No, our DUTY ta say, ‘Thank you, Chesty’ by puttin’ them stars back on his collars ‘n’ promotin’ 'im back ta lieutenant general so all that come ta this monument can see, like you said, ‘HIS TRUE LIKENESS!’”

As I left the Virtual Mess Hall, I was struck by the thought that, "An untrue likeness is a misrepresented likeness."  

Semper His True Likeness,

Anthony F. Milavic
Major USMC (Ret.)


During a telephone conversation with the sculpture, Terry Jones, of the ChestyPuller Monument, I was informed 
that the statue has 0-6 colonel rank insignia on its collars. As indicated above, the pedestal of the monument reads, "Lieutenant General."

(16 Thinks)


While I am more a Smedley Darlington Butler fan myself, I do agree that Chesty deserves his stars. Promote him!

Pretty much Semper anti-PC myself,

Joe Burroughs


This is correct w/re to the Holster and the Missing Rank on the Collars.
Looking at the Statue it is a Private in the US  Marine Corps. The Holster 
needs to be corrected especially in view of the fact that necessary correct
Data was furnished before hand and the Excuse that he should have an issue
type Holster don't hold water. 
What is right is right and all of the excuses don't change anything. He had 
his own personal  Holster and that is what should be on the statue......

Semper Fidelis 

Gunny Grump


Thats quite a response ref to Chesty rank. How I remember the night that he was there for US at Basic School in 19&66.
Semper Fi,
John O





You're a good man Major!!



Whoever made the final decision on the composition of this monument should be horsewhipped.

Al George


Just FIX IT!

Jeff Cross


What you failed to say following your concluding "thought" was that "misrepresentation" is tantamount to unethical if the misrepresenter knew the truth. In the case of the rank insignia, he most certainly did.

Major, thanks to you and the Butter Cutter for informing us all.

Semper Fidelis,

Your Marine Brother



---That may be the funniest, best-written piece of yours that I have ever read!
---Happy New Year, Marine!



What? The NATIONAL MUSEUM OF THE MARINE CORPS got the rank on Chesty's monument wrong? Then ask yourself, How many more displays in that Museum are wrong?

VERY disappointed,

USMC Retired


The butter cutter has a great idea with the Marine-to-Marine ALLMAR to promote the statue. What about taking up a collection and offering a prize to whoever glues the stars on Chesty. You could call it the "Promote Chesty Challenge." Can you picture it: new lieutenants from TBS snooping and pooping down highway 1 in black-face heading to the statue to promote Chesty. 

Actually, raise enough and I might just try it myself.

Black Mike, USMC retired


And another thing; why isn't there a Marine Corps Eagle Globe and Anchor on that helmet cover? 
Will Clifford



It doesn't surprise me at all.  I'm sure the same PC HQMC historian who refused to recognize Capt J.E. "Ned" Dolan and instead officially associated his saying "Freedom is not free, but the U.S. Marine Corps will pay most of your share." to a political head...... probably assisted with this politically correct endeavor as well.

Semper Fidelis,

Steve Clayton
Captain, USMC, LDO (Ret.)


Black Mike:

Re - "Promote Chesty Challenge." Where/when will the Mission Pre-brief be held? Unless it's only open to Occifer types? I'll even bring an EG&A device for the Cover and old CAMMO sticks.

M. McKeever, MSgt USMC (Ret)




Bill Rogers Absolutely!