HW Honor Roll

HERO WEEK STARTS THIS SUNDAY, JUNE 25TH!!!!
We are ready to roll with our Summer ’17 Hero Week, and this installation will honor fallen Marines and our Pags (on the 6th anniversary of his death, 6/29), as well as pay tribute to the foundations of Corps Fitness.
PLEASE NOTE THE FOLLOWING SCHEDULE ADDITIONS AND CHANGES:
**Sunday, June 25th – 10:00AM Class (ONLY CLASS)
Monday 6/26 – Regular Class Schedule
Tuesday 6/27 – Regular Schedule (8:30AM class WILL be the Hero workout) Spin Hybrid will be as usual
Wednesday 6/28 – Regular Schedule
Thursday 6/29 (Pags) – ****Regular Schedule PLUS 9:30AM Class option to do the Hero Workout (8:45 Spin hybrid as usual)
Friday – Regular Schedule
Saturday 7/1 – FINALE 9AM! Stay tuned for details regarding our finale!!!
Saturday 7/1 – Send Off for Ike Nawa after class. More details to come!
And don’t forget to sign up for a t-shirt at the front desk. Design shown below (thank you Matthew Jackson!!)

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Gone, but never forgotten. Our dear friend Mike Lawrence. Remembered always, and especially today on the 3rd anniversary of his passing. We love and miss you Mike!

Mike’s Obituary:
Michael A. Lawrence, 55, of Lower Heidelberg Twp., died June 17, 2014, in Reading Hospital. He was the husband of Laurie A. (Jones) Lawrence; they were married on June 23, 1983. Born in Reading, he was a son of Noreen (Lynch) Lawrence, Reading and the late Kenneth Lawrence. He was a graduate of West Chester University, where he earned his bachelor’s degree in accounting. He first worked at Reinsel & Company as a partner in acquisitions and consulting. Mike was the General Manager for All Star Distributing for 11 years, last working in March. He was a member of St. Ignatius Loyola Roman Catholic Church, Whitfield. Mike was an avid runner and triathlete. He enjoyed kayaking at Blue Marsh and spending all the time he could with his family. Mike is also survived by his children, Andrew, husband of Kim; Jessica, and Maggie, fiancée of Geoff Musick. There are two sisters, Michele, wife of Stephen Yeity and Jean, wife of Kevin Kleckner. He was Pappy to Benjamin, son of Andrew and Kim. Mike is buried at Gethsemane Cemetery. Donations in Mike’s memory may be made to Free to Breathe, a partnership for lung cancer survival: http://www.freetobreathe.org.

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Honoring those who sacrificed their lives 73 years ago today.

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Above: American cemetery at Utah Beach, Normandy, France.  Below: Mulberries Remaining on the beaches of Normandy (G. Kaag, Jan 2004)

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Murphy was born on May 7, 1976 in Smithtown, New York to Irish American parents Maureen and Daniel Murphy, a former assistant Suffolk County district attorney and Vietnam veteran. He was raised in Patchogue. He attended Saxton Middle School, where he played youth soccer and pee-wee football, with his father as coach. In high school, he continued playing sports, and took a summer job as a lifeguard at the Brookhaven town beach in Lake Ronkonkoma. He returned to the job every summer throughout his college years.

Murphy was known to his friends as “Murph”, and he was known as “The Protector” in his high school years. In 8th grade, he protected a child with special needs who was being shoved into a locker by a group of boys, this was the only time the principal of the school had called his parents, they couldn’t have been prouder. He also protected a man who was homeless, who was being attacked while collecting cans. He chased away the attackers and helped the man pick up his cans.

In 1994, Murphy graduated from Patchogue-Medford High School and left home to attend The Pennsylvania State University (Penn State). He graduated from Penn State in 1998, with a double major degree in political science and psychology. Murphy was engaged to be married with the ceremony scheduled for November 2005.

After graduating from Penn State, Murphy was accepted to several law schools, but decided to attend SEAL mentoring sessions at the United States Merchant Marine Academy. In September 2000, he accepted an appointment to the U.S. Navy’s Officer Candidate School in Pensacola, Florida. On December 13 of that year, he was commissioned as an Ensign in the Navy and began Basic Underwater Demolition/SEAL (BUD/S) training in Coronado, California in January 2001, eventually graduating with Class 236.

Upon graduation from BUD/S, he attended the United States Army Airborne School, SEAL Qualification Training and SEAL Delivery Vehicle (SDV) school. Murphy earned his SEAL Trident and checked on board SDV Team ONE (SDVT-1) in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii in July 2002. In October 2002, he deployed with Foxtrot Platoon to Jordan as the liaison officer for Exercise Early Victor. Following his tour with SDVT-1, Murphy was assigned to Special Operations Command Central (SOCCENT) in Florida and deployed to Qatar in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. After returning from Qatar, he was deployed to Djibouti to assist in the operational planning of future SDV missions.

(From online sources)

The Battle:

On June 28, 2005, Lt. Murphy was the officer-in-charge of a four-man SEAL element in support of Operation Red Wing tasked with finding key anti-coalition militia commander near Asadabad, Afghanistan. Shortly after inserting into the objective area, the SEALs were spotted by three goat herders who were initially detained and then released. It is believed the goat herders immediately reported the SEALs’ presence to Taliban fighters.

A fierce gun battle ensued on the steep face of the mountain between the SEALs and a much larger enemy force. Despite the intensity of the firefight and suffering grave gunshot wounds himself, Murphy is credited with risking his own life to save the lives of his teammates. Murphy, intent on making contact with headquarters, but realizing this would be impossible in the extreme terrain where they were fighting, unhesitatingly and with complete disregard for his own life moved into the open, where he could gain a better position to transmit a call to get help for his men.

Moving away from the protective mountain rocks, he knowingly exposed himself to increased enemy gunfire.  This deliberate and heroic act deprived him of cover and made him a target for the enemy.  While continuing to be fired upon, Murphy made contact with the SOF Quick Reaction Force at Bagram Air Base and requested assistance. He calmly provided his unit’s location and the size of the enemy force while requesting immediate support for his team. At one point, he was shot in the back causing him to drop the transmitter. Murphy picked it back up, completed the call and continued firing at the enemy who was closing in.  Severely wounded, Lt. Murphy returned to his cover position with his men and continued the battle.

As a result of Murphy’s call, an MH-47 Chinook helicopter, with eight additional SEALs and eight Army Night Stalkers aboard, was sent in as part of the QRF to extract the four embattled SEALs. As the Chinook drew nearer to the fight, a rocket-propelled grenade hit the helicopter, causing it to crash and killing all 16 men aboard.

On the ground and nearly out of ammunition, the four SEALs, continued to fight.  By the end of a two-hour gunfight that careened through the hills and over cliffs, Murphy, Gunner’s Mate 2nd Class (SEAL) Danny Dietz and Sonar Technician 2nd Class (SEAL) Matthew Axelson had fallen. An estimated 35 Taliban were also dead.  The fourth SEAL, Hospital Corpsman 2nd Class (SEAL) Marcus Luttrell, was blasted over a ridge by a rocket-propelled grenade and knocked unconscious. Though severely wounded, the fourth SEAL and sole survivor, Luttrell, was able to evade the enemy for nearly a day; after which local nationals came to his aide, carrying him to a nearby village where they kept him for three more days. Luttrell was rescued by U.S. Forces on July 2, 2005.

By his undaunted courage, intrepid fighting spirit and inspirational devotion to his men in the face of certain death, Lt. Murphy was able to relay the position of his unit, an act that ultimately led to the rescue of Luttrell and the recovery of the remains of the three who were killed in the battle.

—Murph Foundation “Biography”

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A huge shout out and THANK YOU to Rob and Kim Rauenzahn for sponsoring Corps Fitness to be an Official Host to the Murph Challenge, presented by Forged.

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This annual event serves as a major fundraiser for the Lt. Michael P. Murphy Scholarship Foundation which presents over 22 scholarships each year as well as making contributions to other very worthy organizations.  If you would like to be officially registered (registration will get you a free tank or t-shirt and you will be able to submit your time to see how you compare around the country), you can do so here: https://themurphchallenge.com/pages/register  The cost to be officially registered is $40 or $60 for gold level (additionally get a hat).  Remember, all proceeds go to the Foundation.

And, even if you do not officially register, you still can join in the “fun”.  This “fun” will be held on Saturday, May 27th at 8:30AM.  This will be the ONLY class at CF that day.   For those of you who have never participated or have never done the “Murph” workout, here is a quote from the website that serves as a great motivation to get it done.

“The ’MURPH’ is more than just a workout, it is a tradition that helps push us, humble us, and dedicate a bit of pain and sweat to honor a man who gave everything he had.”

Looking for a big crowd to gut out “Murph” on May 27th….can’t wait to see you there!  Thanks again Rob & Kim!!!

**We encourage ALL CFers to come try out Murph.  If you are new or worried about making it through the workout, remember, there are always ways to scale for your fitness level.** Please read the Murph waiver carefully, and DON’T GET RHABDO!! (The post linked below sums up a lot of history on the CF blog about rhabdo – no sense reinventing the wheel.  And since you’re here reading about Murph, you should also take some time to educate yourself about rhabdo and how NOT to get it.)

Rhabdo is no go

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“New Jersey State Police Lt. Bill Fearon died Thursday December 29th from a malignant brain tumor attributed to his service during the Sept. 11 World Trade Center attacks.”

Hundreds of mourners gathered on Saturday, December 31st, to remember the 22-year veteran of the force, who worked throughout his illness.

“Fearon had been diagnosed in 2015 with the tumor, which has been linked to his response to the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks.”  After his diagnosis, he often dressed as Batman and shared his “no fear” motto while visiting local children’s hospitals, sharing his story to encourage kids to stay positive during their own cancer battles.

“Every day I put my feet on the ground and I look forward to winning,” Fearon said, according to the State Police post. “This is the mindset that I have, it’s about living without fear.”

Fearon is survived by his wife Janice, and their three children, Ryan, Elyse and Jessie.

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“Forty percent of the victims — or 1,113 persons — have not been identified, though the city presumptively issued death certificates” (NYTimes.com).  Their families continue to live with a void in their lives, not knowing whether they will ever have closure.  Many possessions and personal items belonging to these victims have been recovered, and continue to be stored in the National September 11 Memorial and Museum (dailymail.co.uk).

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As recently as March 2015, another family gained closure when the remains of Matthew Yarnell were positively identified 14 years after his death.  “Mr. Yarnell, who lived in Jersey City, had graduated in 1997 from the Heinz College at Carnegie Mellon University. He worked on the 97th floor of the south tower as a vice president and programmer analyst in technology and was one of 97 employees of Fiduciary Trust and its parent company, Franklin Templeton Investments, who were killed when the twin towers were destroyed.” (NYTimes)

More stories and recollections of 9/11 victims are presented in the NYTimes Portraits of Grief.  Information on the victims is available at the 9/11 Memorial Website.

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Athletic Center card

This card was used by Commander Dunn to access the Pentagon athletic center. Physical fitness is very important to a fighting force.  Visits to the gym also provide stress relief and an opportunity to interact with friends and colleagues.

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A caisson carries the casket of Commander Patrick Dunn during funeral services at Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, Virginia, September 27, 2001.  

 

Navy Commander Patrick Dunn, 39, of Springfield, MD, was killed on September 11th, 2001 when a hijacked Boeing 757 airliner smashed into the Navy Command Center where he worked as a planner and strategist.  

“The morning of September 11th, he kissed Stephanie, 31, who was two months pregnant with their first child, before leaving for work at the Pentagon. Then, for the first time, he kissed her stomach, too.

He telephoned later to tell of the terrorist attacks in New York City. After the Pentagon was hit, when he didn’t call back, something told her quickly, starkly, and clearly that he was gone.

Pat, the son of a Newark policeman, came from a Navy family. His father served in World War II and the Korean War; Pat and one of his brothers were Naval Academy graduates. He had just come off several long deployments when they met at a sports bar in Alexandria, she remembered, four years ago last week.” (pentagonmemorial.org)

Dunn’s widow welcomed daughter Alexandria Patricia Dunn on March 17, 2002.  She had red hair just like her father and was just perfect.  Stephanie has worked hard to ensure her story is shared: for her daughter, for her husband, for his beloved Navy and for all those who suffered at the Pentagon when the hijacked airliner slammed into the building September 11.  

Let’s get some today in honor of Patrick Dunn!