Frank V. Gardner
Joseph Julian, Marine Corps Legend
Poem by Frank V. Gardner
One Joseph 'Rudy' Julian,
A World War Two Marine,
Was killed on Iwo Jima in a
A most heroic scene.
On Iwo Jima, forty-five,
Where three Marine Divisions fought,
The enemy vowed kill ten of us
Before each being caught.
The nineteenth day of battle loomed
As Joe went on ahead.
His men were told to cover him:
The last thing he had said.
Because they were receiving fire
From several cliff-side caves,
Their chief went forward, covered by
The firing from his braves.
For three full hours he stayed out front
With weapons for the job:
Bazooka; rifle.... and grenades
He knew just how to lob.
He knocked out six of their positions
For his men's advance;
He was about to signal them,
But never got the chance.
A well concealed machine gun fired
And struck him in the chest!
His death was instantaneous;
His men had lost their best.
Platoon Sergeant Joseph Julian,
Marine Corps legend now:
He didn't order men out front;
He simply showed them how.
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