USMC East Coast  Drill Instructors Association
Newsletter "The Grinder"

Newsletter links are in .pdf format

 June 29, 2014


It is hard to believe it has been two months since our Reunion. Please accept my sincere thanks for another very successful Reunion, I will go into more detail later in the Reunion Recap. As I write this we are still at Camp Lejeune. Mary, Jacy and I are having a great time. We are meeting people and just enjoying retirement.

The Association continues to thrive with the support of the Depot and more importantly the support of the membership. We just returned from Parris Island where we attended the Commanding Generalís Change of Command. Brigadier General Lori Reynolds passed command of the Depot and the Eastern Recruiting Region to Brigadier General Terry Williams. Mary and I thanked Brigadier General Reynolds for her support of the Drill Instructors Association.

Once again, as so often happens in the summer, we find that the majority of senior leaders aboard the Depot have changed. Our plan is to arrange a meeting with the new leaders to brief them on the existence and mission of the Drill Instructors Association. I plan to return to Parris Island in July for Colonel Grabowskiís retirement and to conduct a meeting with as many leaders as we can. I am very proud of this Association and never miss an opportunity to let people know who we are and what we do. We have come a long way and I see continued growth.

I am very pleased to announce that we had another very successful and memorable reunion. We had Marines representing every decade from the 40ís to the present. For those unable to attend I will attempt to report the sequence of events.

Thursday 1 May: Registration commenced at 1500. The Reunion Committee was professional and thorough in the performance of their duties. The club put out an exceptional display of food and there was plenty for everyone. We secured registration and many members returned to the Hospitality Room provided by the Quality Inn Town Center. MGySgt Don Gabbard volunteered to run the Hospitality Room and did an excellent job. I am told the stories ran freely and were very entertaining.

Friday 2 May: Friday always begins early, we were at the H&S Battalion Mess Hall at 0600 where the members enjoyed a Marine Corps Breakfast at a very reasonable price. The Mess Hall is now managed by civilian contractors and they went above and beyond to insure we were fed as quickly as possible. After breakfast we walked across the street to attend Morning Colors. Watching the Holiday Flag being raised to the sound of the National Anthem is always a very moving experience. As usual the bands performance was flawless and the comments from the Commanding General were from her heart. After colors we had our annual picture on the steps of the Headquarters Building. Trying to get a group of Drill Instructors in formation for a photo is always a challenge but we managed once again. After the photo, we attended the Graduation ceremony where the newest Marines were recognized and dismissed to go on leave before reporting for further training. Following Graduation we all moved to the Drill Instructor Monument where we read the names of 18 members who have passed since our last Reunion. SgtMaj Jim Moore had moving words and a prayer for those in attendance. It was then off to Elliotís Beach for the picnic. Golden Corral put on a wonderful spread. We had many active duty Drill Instructors in attendance and they were treated to lunch on the Association. Auction items were a little off this year but we were still able to deposit $1000.00 in the Special Projects Fund. The most anticipated event of the day was next, cadence calling and storytelling. SgtMaj Jeff Nadeau gave a firsthand account of the events at Ribbon Creek. Every eye in the room was on him as he recounted the events of that day. The evening concluded and everyone went home for much needed rest.

Saturday 3 May: Saturday began with the annual meeting at Drill Instructor School. 1stSgt Wyatt gave the members an update of Drill Instructor School. I then called the meeting to order and gave a recap of the yearís events and the state of the Association. We elected one trustee for a three year term. Roger Stembridge was elected by affirmation. We had two nominees for Board of Directors and rather than have the expense of sending out ballots the membership voted to increase the Board by one member allowing both to serve. Major Ski Wojciechowski was reelected to another three year term. Gunnery Sergeant Bud Apple was elected as the most recent Board Member for a three year term. Both were elected by affirmation. The complete minutes of the meeting can be read on line shortly. After the meeting it was time to prepare for the Banquet. The bandís performance at the banquet was both entertaining and moving. I continue to tell the band of our memberís love of their performance. Our co guests of honor Colonel Grabowski and SgtMaj Buck gave inspirational speeches. They will both be missed!

Sunday 4 May: The farewell breakfast is always an emotional event. Time to say farewell to old and new friends with hopes that we are all able to muster back to Parris Island next year.

For those that made the Reunion thank you for your support. For those of you unable to attend this year please try to join us next year. You wonít regret it!

Response to our latest reminder card was very good. We will continue to send reminders at least twice a year as a courtesy to our members. I still encourage all of you to invite a Drill Instructor to join. While you are at Parris Island talk to active duty Drill Instructors about the Association and encourage them to join. SgtMaj Moore recently gave the Association presentation to the graduating class at Drill Instructor School.


I am in the process of placing an order with Spectrum. The Reunion pretty much cleaned us out of the most popular items. Watch the web site.

I am very pleased to announce that many of our members are donating more often. We have several members that are making monthly donations. I continue to just ask that if you are able please consider your Association for a tax deductible donation.


Semper Fidelis,

SgtMaj Kenneth D. Miller USMC (Ret)
President East Coast Drill Instructors Association


1 April 2014 | 5 October 2013 | 13 June 2013
25 mar2013 | 31 Dec 2012 | 12 Sep 2012 | 30 May 2012 | 5 February 2012
 30 November 2011 | 14 August 2011 | 23 May 2011 | 27 February 2011
6 December 2010 | 29 August 2010 | 28 May 2010
31 March 2010 | 14 February 2010 | 20 January 2010 | 27 November 2009