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One of the benefits of being an Armed Forces veteran from the mid-70’s is the ability to relate to other veterans, to show respect for their service today.


History is full of great moments of grace and dignity, pomp and circumstance, but veteran to veteran isn’t about a parade, or acknowledgement.


Getting in and getting out with an honorable is enough for most people. But I like the idea of icing on the cake. Who doesn’t like icing on their cake? Especially when you cut the cake with a Ka-Bar.


A what?


The Ka-Bar fighting knife got it’s name based on a story of a man, a fur trapper, who killed a bear with it after his rifle jammed. No, it wasn’t Daniel Boone who ‘kilt a bar’, but the name stuck and became legend.


I’ve had the honor of knowing a few Marines up close and personal, like my Dad and Father in-law. One served in Korea, the other in WWII, and both knew the Ka-Bar legend.


My Dad ran the ridges of Korea with the 1st Marines, took a few rounds, and did the sort of things Marines get a Silver Star for doing while shot up.


Father in-law hit a beach in the Pacific, took rounds, and ended up in a hospital for a year and a permanent limp.


For every service there’s a symbol. The Marine Ka-Bar is that symbol, a gut dropping, throat slashing, weapon of last resort no one wants to see in the hands of a skilled knife fighter coming after them.


The top image is a Ka-Bar with history, from old Marines who saddled up for their last formation, to a current Marine with the sort of drive that comes from a deep place of proving those who complain about millennials wrong.


It’s been my good fortune to give and receive this Ka-Bar twice. I’m giving it one more time for the best of all causes: good health.


It’s a sweet irony to think a combat knife with a bloody legacy might bestow good health on someone, but this one will. Like taking a pill to cure an ill, this knife will save a life, or at least improve one.


To baby boomer dads of all stripes, listen to your wife, listen to your kids, and take the measures needed to ensure you’ll be present and accounted for to hear them brag about you, about how you took control of your health.


No one can push like one of these guys:


My Title is Marine, but it is my choice and my choice Seiten-Bilder-Platzhalter2alone to be a Special Operations Marine. I will never forget the tremendous sacrifice and reputation of those who came before me.

At all ranges my fires will be accurate. With surprise, speed, and violence of action, I will hunt enemies of my country and bring chaos to their doorstep. I will keep my body strong, my mind sharp, and my kit ready at all times.

Raider and Recon men forged the path I follow. With Determination, Dependability, and Teamwork I will uphold the honor and the legacy passed down to me. I will do the right thing always, and will let my actions speak for me. As a quiet professional, I will not bring shame upon myself or those with which I serve.

Spiritus Invictus, an Unconquerable Spirit, will be my goal. I will never quit, I will never surrender, I will never fail. I will adapt to the situation. I will gain and maintain the initiative. I will always go a little farther and carry more than my share.

On any battlefield, at any point of the compass I will excel. I will set the example for all others to emulate. At the tip of the spear, I will teach and prepare others to seek out, dismantle, and destroy our common enemies. I will fight side by side with my partners and will be the first in and last out of any mission.

Conquering all obstacles of mind, body, and spirit; the honor and pride of serving in special operations will be my driving force. I will remain always faithful to my brothers and always forward in my service.


The general rule of life? Your day might suck, but you still need to do something with it.


Everyone’s badassed until it’s time to do what badasses do, so do your best. Cut the mustard with a Ka-Bar.
About David Gillaspie

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