Gung Ho!

Main Entry: gung ho Pronunciation: 'g&[ng]-'hOFunction: adjective Etymology: Gung ho!, motto (interpreted as meaning "work together") adopted by certain U.S. marines, from Chinese (Beijing) gOnghé, short for ZhOngguó GOngyè Hézuò Shè Chinese Industrial Cooperative Society: extremely or overly zealous or enthusiastic

Gung Ho!
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Gung Ho!
And The Cost of War!

Cost of the War.Com
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Gung Ho!
And The Cost of War In Lives!

Monday, August 01, 2005

Marine to Marine

Marine taking care of his own!
No one can understand the singular suffering of the wounded like their injured comrades. So one is leading the way in ministering to them.

By David Zucchino, Times Staff Writer

CAMP LEJEUNE, N.C. — A hospital therapist pressed down hard against a ridge of crimson scar tissue on the shattered left leg of Marine Lance Cpl. Donald Ferguson. The corporal gritted his teeth.

His face red and contorted, Ferguson tried to snap to attention as a Marine lieutenant colonel approached. The officer's hair was cropped close on top and shaved on the sides, revealing a jagged pink scar across his left temple from a combat wound.

"Relax, relax," Lt. Col. Tim Maxwell said, resting his hand on the corporal's shoulder. "Just wanted to see how you're doing."

"Doing good, sir. How about you?"

"I feel like I got no brain left," Maxwell said. "My brain got whacked pretty good. I kind of have to fake it to get by."

On Oct. 7 in central Iraq, mortar shrapnel tore into Maxwell's skull, causing severe brain damage, and lacerated the left side of his body. Seventeen days later, a rocket exploded near Ferguson in western Iraq, shredding his lower left leg.

The two Marines had never met before the 40-year-old colonel sought out the 22-year-old corporal in the physical therapy ward of the Naval Hospital at Camp Lejeune this month. Their encounter was part of an extraordinary endeavor by a Marine officer with a faulty memory and a speech impediment, in which the walking wounded help care for injured comrades.

Even as Maxwell recovers physically and psychologically, he patrols military hospitals and barracks to comfort and counsel a handful of the U.S. service members injured in Iraq, which number about 14,000.

Helping hand
(Lissa Gotwals / For The Times)

(Lissa Gotwals / For The Times)

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Semper Fi


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