Friday, July 01, 2016

John Joyce, One of MWCS-48's Finest

NORWOOD PARK — Most people would run as quickly as possible, as far away as possible, from a rocket attack.
Not John Joyce.
Stationed in Kirkuk, Iraq, Joyce — a technical sergeant in the Air Force — ran toward the burning ammunition depot that had been attacked by insurgents in an effort to salvage as much as equipment as possible at the height of the war in Iraq in 2004.
On Monday, Joyce, 60, will serve as grand marshal for the Norwood Park Memorial Day Parade.
"It is going to be an awesome experience," Joyce said.
Heather Cherone discusses the Norwood Park Memorial Day parade:
Joyce, who also served in the Marines, was also stationed in Baghdad as well as the United Arab Emirates as the crew chief for the Air Force's aircraft rescue service. 
"It was a very rewarding experience," Joyce said. "I worked with outstanding service men and women and traveled all over the world."
Joyce, who lives near O'Hare International Airport with his wife and 11-year-old son Anthony, comes from a family of veterans. His father served in the Irish army, his son is a Marine who has been stationed in Nigeria as part of a humanitarian mission and his brother-in-law is a member of the Navy.
"I knew I wanted to join the military when I was knee-high," Joyce said.
Memorial Day should be observed as a solemn reminder of the sacrifice made by men and women who were killed in battle or while serving their country, Joyce said.
"It shouldn't just be a three-day weekend and an excuse to barbecue," Joyce said. "So many people don't understand what it is all about."
Joyce said he would especially remember the son of a friend and fellow firefighter who was killed in Iraq.
"But it is not only the soldier who should be remembered, but also their friends and family," Joyce said.
Now retired from military service, Joyce is a firefighter in Truck Company 28 in Bucktown.
Norwood Park Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Bea McDonough said Joyce was selected as grand marshal because of his many years of military service — and his work to protect veterans' benefits while on leave from the Chicago Fire Department.
"He has accomplished so much," McDonough said.
The parade will step off at 11 a.m. at Onahan Elementary School, 6334 W. Raven St., and finish at Taft High School, 6530 W. Bryn Mawr Ave.

Thursday, December 31, 2015

Happy New Year


Eat Less, 

Travel More, 

Run Spiel Chek, 

Forgive and Forget

Sunday, September 27, 2015

Master Gunnery Sgt. Ken Durbin aka "Superman" Rest in Peace, Semper Fi

Master Gunnery Sgt. Kenneth R. Durbin aka "Superman" 57 years old, of Noblesville, IN passed away on September 16, 2015 surrounded by family. Kenneth was known for his generous and giving spirit to all who knew him. He served proudly in the United States Marine Corps for 25 years before his retirement. He was an avid runner which was his pride and joy. Kenneth is survived by his loving wife, Dianna Durbin; children, Julie Durbin-Johnson (Timothy) and Joseph Durbin (Nataliya); grandchild, Ethan Johnson; sister, Nadine Luchene (Bill); brothers, Ronald Durbin (Yong), John Durbin (Joan), and Patrick Durbin (Theresa). He was preceded in death by his parents, Basil and Shirley Durbin. 

"Cancer may have taken my body away, but in your hearts I will always stay". Family and Friends may call from 1:00pm - 8:00pm Sunday September 20, 2015 with Scripture Service at 7:00pm in Flanner and Buchanan-Geist 7855 Cork Rd. Indianapolis. Funeral Mass Monday, September 21, 2015 at 10:00am in St. John Vianney Catholic Church 15176 Blessed Mother Blvd, Fishers, IN. Memorial Contributions may be made to Stand up to Cancer and Seasons Hospice Please sign Kenneth's guestbook and share memories at

Published in a Chicago Tribune Media Group Publication on Sept. 19, 2015- See more at:



I got a call from Diane Durbin, the "Bull" is a fight with an adversary he will not win. I spoke to Ken, and his spirit is as expected, but the diagnosis is grim. Diane says a few days at best.

I don't know what else to do except, offer prayers.
Ken and Diane have been family for 35 years and he will continue to fight the fight and Diane too.

Semper Fi my brother, you are in my thoughts and heart,

John Urban


Very sad. He is a great Marine.

He and his family are in our prayers.

Semper Fi

Craig Hullinger

Thursday, June 11, 2015


STAFF SERGEANT KAZAN V. WILSON PASSED last weekend on or about Sunday morning, June, 7 2015.

Staff Sergeant Kazan V. Wilson was in Radio Platoon, from approximately 1984 to 2002, when he retired. He participated in several active duty periods when we were short of people, and he also participated the Eastern Division Shooting Competition, from 1986 thru 1991.

Visitation will be Friday, June, 1215 at Leak & Sons Funeral Home, 7838 So. Cottage Grove, Chicago, from 6pm to 9pm.

The Funeral: Will be held at The NEW BEGINNING CHURCH, 6620 So King Drive,Saturday, June,13th, starting at 9am.

See you there if you can make it, PASS THE INFO TO OTHER MARINES.


Master Sergeant Roosevelt McCloud

Friday, June 05, 2015

Globe and Laurel "Diners"

From left:  Major Rick Spooner, owner of the Globe and Laurel, Jack Paxton, Walt Ford, Editor/Publisher of Leatherneck

Famous Globe and Laurel Restaurant in background.

Thursday, June 04, 2015

Camp McCoy Alternate Drill Weekend After Action Report

Not much to say after such a great 18th annual Ft. McCoy alternate drill weekend a couple of days ago.  The weather really cooperated.  Thursday and Friday were bright and sunny which served me well out in my kayak fishing on base and the same for the mountain bike riders. Saturday was cooler and totally overcast, which leant itself to a great day on the Sportsman’s range on base.  I go out usually once a month to fam fire and after 50 rounds I ready to pack it up.  Well, not our Marines who went through roughly 1700 rounds of 9mm and .45.  Wow!

The time passes by so fast and before we know it Quantico will on our doorstep.  The Globe & Laurel that used to be in Quantico town before moving to Triangle and now because of the widening of U.S. 1 has moved to Stafford on the south boundary of the base.  I’m attaching a photo of the restaurant so you can see something of what this “museum” looks like.  On the left is WWII Marine Major Rick Spooner, (mustang) Captain John Paxton, who is president of the Marine Combat Correspondents, and Col. Walt Ford, the President of the Marine Foundation that includes Leatherneck and the Marine Gazette, the Marine Shop and the Marine Book Store.  Major Spooner is always present so you’ll recognize him when you walk in.  If you see any Chicago Police patches displayed I donated them when I went through the FBI Academy in 1980.

Also, a USAF colonel friend send me some information about the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in Arlington that I thought, if you haven’t seen this, would be interested since it only about 35 miles north of the base.

18-18 19 Sep is the official dates of phase II of our 18th annual drill weekend, however I suspect some will be arriving on Wednesday, 16 Sep. As time draws closer we’ll firm that up and which quarters we’ll select for our stay. Make sure you have your Marine ID card with you. If you have any question now just holler.

Semper Fi,