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CindyS (#18484625)
 member for 14 years, 3 months, 18 days
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Bio Photo I thought this poem would be great for this time of year. Published in Leatherneck Magazine in December 1991, this is the reproduced version written by Lance Corporal James M Schmidt. Verified from

"Merry Christmas, My Friend"

Twas the night before Christmas, he lived all alone,

In a one bedroom house made of plaster & stone.

I had come down the chimney, with presents to give and to see just who in this home did live

As I looked all about, a strange sight I did see, no tinsel, no presents, not even a tree.

No stocking by the fire, just boots filled with sand.

On the wall hung pictures of a far distant land.

With medals and badges, awards of all kind, a sobering thought soon came to my mind.

For this house was different, unlike any I'd seen.

This was the home of a U.S. Marine.

I'd heard stories about them, I had to see more, so I walked down the hall and pushed open the door.

And there he lay sleeping, silent, alone, Curled up on the floor in his one-bedroom home.

He seemed so gentle, his face so serene,
Not how I pictured a U.S. Marine.
Was this the hero, of whom I’d just read?
Curled up in his poncho, a floor for his bed?

His head was clean-shaven, his weathered face tan.

I soon understood, this was more than a man.
For I realized the families that I saw that night, owed their lives to these men, who were willing to fight.

Soon around the Nation, the children would play,
And grown-ups would celebrate on a bright Christmas day.

They all enjoyed freedom, each month and all year, because of Marines like this one lying here.

I couldn’t help wonder how many lay alone, on a cold Christmas Eve, in a land far from home.

Just the very thought brought a tear to my eye.
I dropped to my knees and I started to cry.

He must have awoken, for I heard a rough voice, "Santa, don't cry, this life is my choice
I fight for freedom, I don't ask for more.
My life is my God, my country, my Corps."

With that he rolled over, drifted off into sleep, I couldn't control it, I continued to weep.

I watched him for hours, so silent and still.
I noticed he shivered from the cold night's chill.

So I took off my jacket, the one made of red,
and covered this Marine from his toes to his head.

Then I put on his T-shirt of scarlet and gold,
with an eagle, globe and anchor emblazoned so bold.

And although it barely fit me, I began to swell with pride, and for one shining moment, I was Marine Corps deep inside.

I didn't want to leave him so quiet in the night, this guardian of honor so willing to fight.

But half asleep he rolled over, and in a voice clean and pure, said "Carry on, Santa, it's Christmas Day, all secure."

One look at my watch and I knew he was right,
Merry Christmas my friend, Semper Fi and goodnight.
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Messages left for CindyS (1031)[Leave Message]
SFC USA RET Duffie & Kathy
Marry Christmas and Happy New Year
Marry Christmas to you and your's. D & K
Added by SFC USA RET Duffie & Kath... on Dec 24, 2014 6:14 PM
RE: Delores Ann Martin
Thank you so much, I do appreciate it!
Added by Renee on Dec 12, 2014 4:42 PM
Valerie C.
Jones family
I notice you have submitted quite a few Jones names in the Erie Street Cemetery, in Cleveland. I was wondering if you know the proximity of some of them. I found a great-great uncle, R.P. Jones, age 5, and submitted a full name of Robert Peak Jones which is from our family records. I was wondering if you know if there are any apparent family members near by? I am looking for the graves of his father, Thomas Jones, Sr.; 1793-1870, a sister of Robert, Mary Ann, b.1823, died bef 1849; and a brother William, 1825-1893. The rest of the family died elsewhere. I would appreciate any help you can give me. Thanks for ALL your hard work!
Valerie C.
Added by Valerie C. on Dec 12, 2014 11:46 AM
Goodnight Gram
RE: Henry Gerald Schallert at Fort Snelling
Thank you for such a swift edit!!! I appreciate it very much. Thanks also for taking the time to inform me about the edit request. I have not made many requests. Prior to contacting you, I saw that you had just recently done some editing, so I kept my fingers crossed. Thanks for making the memorial and you're welcome for the photo that goes with this veteran. I knew him.
Added by Goodnight Gram on Dec 12, 2014 11:15 AM
Goodnight Gram
Henry Gerald Schallert at Fort Snelling
Please change birth date from March 3, to March 23 for Mr. Schallert. His birth date is clearly visible on his tombstone. Thank you.
Added by Goodnight Gram on Dec 12, 2014 9:30 AM
Amanda Grindle Hillard
Thank you so much for the edit. Means a lot. I have found her mothers family. Gail
Added by Gail on Dec 11, 2014 2:05 PM
Delores Ann Martin
CindyS thank you for all your efforts and helping me to find my grandmother. Thank you for all you do!
Added by Renee on Dec 10, 2014 7:16 PM
RE: Eva Cauley-14744389
Thanks, so much!
Added by Kaye on Dec 10, 2014 2:21 PM
Eva Cauley-14744389
Hi Cindy, Could you please change the order of the photos for Eve so that the single headstone photo is first? Thank you so much. Kaye
Added by Kaye on Dec 09, 2014 5:29 PM
Carl Catherman
Frank Hassenplug
Cindy, thank you very much for updating his memorial. I appreciate your quick response.
Added by Carl Catherman on Dec 08, 2014 10:11 AM
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