26th Marines Association - Our Origins ...

Our reunion was a lifelong dream of Ted Nichols, a member of Echo Company, 3rd Platoon in Viet Nam in 1969. He was basically the only one Harvey Lang had stayed in contact with over the years, with the exception of occasional contact with others in 3rd Platoon. He wanted this to happen years previous, and then in the spring of 2001, Ted died of cancer.

The death of Ted was devastating; this loss brought home once again the brotherhood of being a Marine. The facts are we all made it home, not because of our individual skills or luck, but because we all had each other, and we took care of each other. Harvey Lang (known as Fang) and Mike Townes (known as Nashville Cat (deceased in early 2014), had also been in contact with others off and on since we had returned back to the world in the mid to late 60's and 1970. We met in September of 2001 and decided to start work on the first reunion.

Quinn Harry found us early on and created our website 26th Marines Regiment dot Org (this site). It has up to date information regarding our organizations history and origins, current officers, past and next reunion information, contact information for members on a request basis, and other information related to our ongoing 26th Marines Association. The site is also a repository for Nam photos and a compendium of other historical pictures and information related to our past. We also have a Facebook page: Facebook Page. (Note: Not updated in over a year)

Sonny Hollub was the next contact, who had been in contact with several 2/26'ers, Paul Tribus, Doc Charlie Klotz, Rudy Fonseca, Bruce Killen, Ron Barrett, Lee Martin and others over the years... and it mushroomed from there.

While we were not for sure how successful we would be in starting this association, we started preparations for the association's first reunion. In May of 2002, this lifelong dream became a reality, and we were together again for the first time in 30 years. We have held annual reunions since 2002, except for 2021 (Covid). We all owe ourselves a pat on the back for continuing this legacy.

Over the years, we have expanded our membership availability to all battallions, WWII, Vietnam and anyone who has served with the 26th MEU... and since 2022, any Marine or Marine's Marine (Corpsman), regardless of when or who you served with. In doing this, we hoped to obtain members from the 26th in WWII, offering to do the work for those old guys. We do have two Iwo Vets who served with the 26th Marine Regiment during World War II (WWII).

A few years ago, at the Vegas Reunion, one of those Iwo Jima veterans, George Bernstein, 2/26 HQ, attended and was our key note speaker at the banquet... and what a treat it was! Being from Ocala, Florida, he drove with the assistance of his younger brother, all the way to Las Vegas. He had planned to attend our Savannah, Georgia reunion. His brother had passed away and his son was going to bring him. We are also sad to report that his son notified us that Mr. Bernstein had passed away. It was such a treat to have him as our keynote speaker at the Vegas Reunion.

The goal of this association is to preserve our brotherhood, reflect on our past and present for the benefit of all. Our intent of officers and board members of this association is to not only make this possible, but to improve the next reunion and strengthen our organization.

George Bernstein, Iwo Jima Vet               

Semper Fi

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