Who is/was Gunnery Sergeant John Basilone?


I was driving north on Interstate 5 the other day and noticed a sign at Camp Pendleton naming that section of the freeway for Gunnery Sergeant John Basilone. Then a little farther north at San Onofre there is a turnoff named Basilone Road. Are these names one and the same, and if so, just who the heck is/was Gunnery Sergeant John Basilone?

-- JoDiego, the net

Never a Marine -- am I right, puke? Never had the stuff to sweat it out with the few, the proud, Nancy-boy? Yeah, we know your type. If you had been, you wouldn't ask this question. If you had been, you'd take off that Chargers cap and hold it over your heart every time you drove by Basilone Road. You'd salute one of the toughest danged ironmen from the halls of Montezuma to the shores of Tripoli. Marine Sergeant John Basilone, just an ordinary Italian boy from New Jersey. He distinguished himself in battle commanding a squad of machine gunners against a regiment of Japanese at Guadalcanal. He was shot up. He was burned. They sent him back to the States to recuperate and sell a hell of a lot of War Bonds. But he scorned the sissy life and yearned to be back with his men. They shipped him to the Pacific. He died during the assault on Iwo Jima. He was the first Marine ever to win the Navy Cross and the Congressional Medal of Honor. When you crawl on your belly through the mud on the Crucible course at MCRD you hear the story of Sgt. Basilone, and it gives you the guts to continue. Got that, puke? Yeah? Hey, that's "Sir, thank you, sir," Nancy-boy.

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