Marines’ sacrifice parallels that of Jesus


A few years ago I had the privilege to meet Ostal Layton in Kent. As a young man he was in the Marine Corps. I cannot say that he “was” a Marine, because I am told, “once a Marine always a Marine.”

He, like any Marine, can tell you that in World War II thousands of young Marines hit the beach on Iwo Jima. Thousands of Marines died on Iwo Jima. The men pushed forward and took Mount Suribachi at the cost of 6,821 American lives - almost all of them were Marines.

In the most famous photograph of WWII, six men raised the U.S. flag at the top of that mountain. Five of those men were Marines.

Just after that flag was erected, Secretary of the Navy James Forestal said, “The raising of that flag on Suribachi means a Marine Corps for the next 500 years.”

While in town, I had the privilege to meet another man from Kent. This man, Walt Sickler, was in the Navy as a young man. Ostal and Walt will pick on each other year after year because of the service that each had joined and served, but a third friend of mine was in the Navy during WWII. This man saw the flag go up on Mount Suribachi. He said that the boys roared, just like someone had hit a home run in the World Series!

The Marines took the hill and it was mostly Marines who raised the flag, but the Navy did a fantastic job of getting those boys to the beach on Iwo Jima.

Thousands of our boys sacrificed their lives to take Iwo from the enemy.

The Lord Jesus sacrificially gave His life on the Cross of Calvary to redeem us from our spiritual enemy, Satan. If the Marines had not given their lives on that sulfur island we would have had a difficult time beating Japan.

If Jesus had not died for us, no one could ever go to heaven.

Raising the U.S. flag on Mount Suribachi meant that there would be a Marine Corps for the next 500 years.

Raising the cross on Mount Calvary (and Christ’s death for us on that cross) means Ostal and Walt will be in heaven for all eternity.

Dan Manka

Fairmont, W.V.

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