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Old 13 September 2017, 23:44
Brian1/75 Brian1/75 is offline
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The true History of the Ranger Creed

I was just trying to get the record straight on the history of the Ranger Creed. From what I understand, it was originally written for 1st Ranger Battalion in 1974 by CSM Neal Gentry as "of my Ranger Battalion." According to the wikipedia, it existed prior to this with the existence of the Ranger Companies as "of the Rangers." For you guys old enough to remember, what's the story?
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Old 14 September 2017, 08:43
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What I was taught mirrors your understanding of CSM Gentry writing the Creed. I never heard of the "Of the Rangers" version until I went to work at RTB. They did it that way at RTB for the obvious reason that they wanted to embed the Creed but RTB has nothing to do with the Ranger Regiment. It was always funny that the Battboys all said "my Ranger Regiment" anyway, just out of spite.

My guess would be the Vietnam story about the Ranger Companies would originate from one of the "I'm a Ranger too" crowd who was tabbed but never served in the Regiment. I could be wrong on all counts.

I did always find it interesting how things that originated in the Regiment spread throughout the rest of the Army. Every other "Creed" in the Army that I am aware of is a slightly modified version of the Ranger Creed. The term "Hooah" that in my day was never heard outside of the Regiment spread throughout the Army until it became the joke it is today.

But, I digress....
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Out of the night that covers me,
Black as the Pit from pole to pole,
I thank whatever gods may be
For my unconquerable soul.
In the fell clutch of circumstance
I have not winced nor cried aloud.
Under the bludgeonings of chance
My head is bloody, but unbowed.
Beyond this place of wrath and tears
Looms but the Horror of the shade
And yet the menace of the years
Finds, and shall find, me unafraid.
It matters not how strait the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll,
I am the master of my fate
I am the captain of my soul.
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Old 14 September 2017, 09:00
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Mingo Kane Mingo Kane is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sharky View Post
What I was taught mirrors your understanding of CSM Gentry writing the Creed. I never heard of the "Of the Rangers" version until I went to work at RTB. They did it that way at RTB for the obvious reason that they wanted to embed the Creed but RTB has nothing to do with the Ranger Regiment. It was always funny that the Battboys all said "my Ranger Regiment" anyway, just out of spite.

My guess would be the Vietnam story about the Ranger Companies would originate from one of the "I'm a Ranger too" crowd who was tabbed but never served in the Regiment. I could be wrong on all counts.

I did always find it interesting how things that originated in the Regiment spread throughout the rest of the Army. Every other "Creed" in the Army that I am aware of is a slightly modified version of the Ranger Creed. The term "Hooah" that in my day was never heard outside of the Regiment spread throughout the Army until it became the joke it is today.

But, I digress....
Spot on...I remember when the creed changed from battalion to regiment. I learned the Ranger Creed the hard way, standing in the chow line after running from the RIP complex to get there, tired as fuck, standing at a modified parade rest. One hand behind your back, the other hand holding the Ranger Handbook--trying to memorize the Creed while RIP Instructors were walking up and down the ranks questioning every damn one of us on the stanzas. Praying that no one fucked up so we could get a few bites of food before some chucklehead fucked up and the Rip Instructors ran our raggedy asses back.

To this day, all these years later...I have forgotten a great many things about my life, and will likely forget a great many more--but the Creed. It's a mental tattoo on my soul, and I can still recite it, word for word.

...nothing like reciting the Creed, while being blindfolded, standing on a platform ready to take the swim test--not knowing when you're gonna be dropkicked, flipped, or shoved into the water.....hahahahahahahahahahaha.
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Old 14 September 2017, 09:01
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My Ranger Battalion

<2>
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Old 14 September 2017, 10:00
Attila175 Attila175 is offline
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When I first got to Batt in 86, I had learned it as Regiment. A lot of NCOs would still only say it as Battalion.

Ranger school in 87 used "of the Rangers". Many Batt Boys could be heard saying Ranger Regiment when we did the creed.
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Old 14 September 2017, 11:33
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I remember hearing that CSM Gentry had taken the gist of the creed from another, earlier source, of some kind of Airborne creed and working it to read the way it does. I saw the "source document" back when and they were similar, but I couldn't tell you who's or what it was now. and if it had come from a legitimate, earlier Airborne source, I'm sure the 82nd Mafia would have let everyone know.

as far as spite goes in Ranger School, it wasn't initially out of spite for me and mine, it was that it was without question to be said correctly. some RIs who I assume never served in a BN/Regt thought we should conform, and it was well worth any extra attention to remain true to our Ranger Regiment.
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Old 14 September 2017, 13:26
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My Ranger Battalion
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Old 14 September 2017, 15:23
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arrived in '87..."my Ranger Regiment".

Never deviated or waivered. Left in late 93' said the same while in RTB.

The "of the Rangers" or whatever was a bullshit grab by Big Army / Tradoc.

The old cats still shouting "my Ranger Battallion" deserved to say so, but they were swimming upstream.

Shit changes. You know like elbow and knee pads, hair cuts, etc.
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Old 14 September 2017, 16:33
Brian1/75 Brian1/75 is offline
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You can see what the wikipedia says here:

The original Ranger Creed is above, but variations of the first stanza have occurred. This is due to the diverging histories of the Rangers as a unit. After the consolidation of the Ranger Companies, the phrase, "of my Ranger Regiment" was substituted for "of the Rangers" by members of 1st Ranger Battalion.[citation needed] When 2nd Ranger Battalion was formed, they did likewise. After the formation of the 75th Ranger Regiment, members of all battalions adopted the wording, "of my Ranger Regiment", and this version remains in use throughout the regiment.[3] However, the version containing the phrase "of the Rangers" continues to be used in the Ranger Handbook.

It doesn't even make sense because earlier in the wikipedia it says it was written in 1974 by CSM Gentry. I've tried editing it several times, but it keeps getting reverted despite part of it is uncited. Now I'm apparently in a 'edit war.' I was hoping to find some sort of citation to correct this.
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Old 14 September 2017, 16:56
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This was written by COL (Ret) Keith Nightingale. COL Nightingale was the RTB CDR when I was there in 90-91 and I still stay in touch with him on occasion.



https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/range...th-nightingale

THE RANGER CREED
Published on May 8, 2016

THE HISTORY OF OUR RANGER CREED

The true test of a leader is whether his followers will adhere to his cause from their own volition, enduring the most arduous hardships without being forced to do so, and remaining steadfast in the moments of greatest peril.
- Xenophon, c. 431-350 BC

Every living Ranger knows and understands the Ranger Creed. It is a living embodiment of a personal and organizational philosophy. It sustains the individual and the unit in its darkest hours and most perilous exposures. It is posted on walls of living quarters around the world where Rangers live and have lived. It is referred to by many non-Rangers as a secret basis for their own existence and personal beliefs. It transcends all other motivations of the individual. It defines the person and the organization-It is what is and what all believe.

Webster defines a Creed as “a set of fundamental beliefs; also: a guiding principle.” The Ranger Creed states what a Ranger as an individual stands for, what he will do and for the unit, what it must do. It is simple, clear and unambiguous and that is both its strength and its glory.

The Ranger Creed
Recognizing that I volunteered as a Ranger, fully knowing the hazards of my chosen profession, I will always endeavor to uphold the prestige, honor, and high esprit de corps of my Ranger Regiment.

Acknowledging the fact that a Ranger is a more elite soldier who arrives at the cutting edge of battle by land, sea, or air, I accept the fact that as a Ranger my country expects me to move farther, faster and fight harder than any other soldier.

Never shall I fail my comrades. I will always keep myself mentally alert, physically strong and morally straight and I will shoulder more than my share of the task whatever it may be. One-hundred-percent and then some.

Gallantly will I show the world that I am a specially selected and well-trained soldier. My courtesy to superior officers, neatness of dress and care of equipment shall set the example for others to follow.

Energetically will I meet the enemies of my country. I shall defeat them on the field of battle for I am better trained and will fight with all my might. Surrender is not a Ranger word. I will never leave a fallen comrade to fall into the hands of the enemy and under no circumstances will I ever embarrass my country.

Readily will I display the intestinal fortitude required to fight on to the Ranger objective and complete the mission though I be the lone survivor.

RANGERS LEAD THE WAY!

The origin of the Ranger Creed goes back to the formation of the renewed Ranger Battalion concept in 1974 as well as to the concept of the Creed as a unifying philosophy in the beginnings of Christianity. As the concept of a specific form of Church evolved before Christ, various sects devised the concept of a defined creed to identify them from others. The most famous being the Nicene Creed of 400 A.D. It simply stated the personal philosophy and belief of its adherents so as to separate itself from others-so does the Ranger Creed. It is the embodiment of the soul of the individual and the organization in which he serves.

Throughout recorded history, every great Nation has had a small military organization that was utterly reliable and totally dependable to accomplish the mission of the moment or disintegrate itself trying. It was both the model of the best that military structure possessed as well as its last resort. The Greek Hoplites, Caesar’s Tenth Legion, Napoleons Old Reliables, the British Household Guards and the American Ranger, each had a Creed as the basis for binding and bonding their membership into a cohesive mass that thought and acted alike, shared common values and forsook privations while relegating personal desires for the greater good. In the darkest of moments and the in the most tenuous of times, the Creed focused the members and caused ordinary people to achieve extraordinary things. It was the foundation of the organizational soul.

The outbreak of the 1973 Middle East War prompted the Department of the Army to be concerned about the need for a light mobile force that could be moved quickly to any trouble spot in the world. In the fall of 1973, General Creighton Abrams, Army Chief of Staff formulated the idea of the reformation of the first battalion-sized Ranger units since World War II. In January 1974, he sent a message to the field directing formation of a Ranger Battalion. He selected its missions and picked the first officers. He felt a tough, disciplined and elite Ranger unit would set a standard for the rest of the U.S. Army and that, as Rangers "graduated " from Ranger units to Regular Army units, their influence would improve the entire Army. The first officer selected was LTC K.C. Leuer.

LTC Leuer received a call in mid-February of 1974 to go to Lawson Army Airfield and report to Gen Bill DePuy-then the TRADOC Commander. At the VIP reception room at Lawson, Gen Depuy presented LTC Leuer with the now famous Abrams Charter:

“The battalion is to be an elite, light, and the most proficient infantry in the world. A battalion that can do things with its hands and weapons better than anyone. The battalion will contain no "hoodlums or brigands" and if the battalion is formed from such persons, it will be disbanded. Wherever the battalion goes, it must be apparent that it is the best. “

Gen Depuy then went on to state that “Abe wants you to create a Creed that will serve as the guiding light for the Rangers to train, fight and live by.” This was to embody a set of personal and organizational standards that would migrate throughout the Army as soldiers came and left the unit. LTC Leuer then had to determine how to accomplish all of the above.

LTC Leuer, determined that the device of a Creed was such a necessary and fundamental part of the evolving Ranger experience that it must be established during the formative period.

. He believed that this Creed must be so compelling and so clear as to attach the individual to the unit and to define the system of standards and quality necessary for the First Ranger Battalion. He assigned the original draft task to CSM Neil Gentry, the First CSM. LTC Leuer believed that the acceptance and promulgation of the Creed by the Ranger NCO corps would be the only way in which it would be lastingly inculcated and imbedded in the Ranger ethos. This was not going to be an issue that would expire at his change of command.

CSM Gentry, as a recent CSM of the Airborne Department, used the existing Airborne Creed as his start point.

The Airborne Creed

I volunteered as a parachutist, fully realizing the hazard of my chosen service and by my thoughts and actions will always uphold the prestige, honor and high esprit-de-corps of parachute troops.

I realize that a parachutist is not merely a soldier who arrives by parachute to fight, but is an elite shock trooper and that his country expects him to march farther and faster, to fight harder, and to be more self-reliant than any other soldier. Parachutists of all allied armies belong to this great brotherhood.

I shall never fail my fellow comrades by shirking any duty or training, but will always keep myself mentally and physically fit and shoulder my full share of the task, whatever it may be.
I shall always accord my superiors fullest loyalty and I will always bear in mind the sacred trust I have in the lives of the men I will accompany into battle.

I shall show other soldiers by my military courtesy, neatness of dress and care of my weapons and equipment that I am a picked and well trained soldier.

I shall endeavor always to reflect the high standards of training and morale of parachute troops.

I shall respect the abilities of my enemies, I will fight fairly and with all my might. Surrender is not in my creed.

I shall display a high degree of initiative and will fight on to my objective and mission, though I be the lone survivor.

I shall prove my ability as a fighting man against the enemy on the field of battle, not by quarreling with my comrades in arms or by bragging about my deeds.

I shall always realize that battles are won by an army fighting as a team, that I fight first and blaze the path into battle for others to follow and to carry the battle on.

I belong to the finest unit in the world. By my actions and deeds alone, I speak for my fighting ability. I will strive to uphold the honor and prestige of my outfit, making my country proud of me and of the unit to which I belong.

In turn, the US Airborne Creed, as developed by the USAIS Airborne School, was adopted after a study of the WW II German Fallshirmjager Creed.

Fallschirmjager Creed

You are the chosen ones of the German Army. You will seek combat and train yourself to endure any manner of test. To you the battle shall be the fulfillment.

Cultivate true comradeship, for by the aid of your comrades you will conquer or die.

Beware of talking. Be not corruptible. Men act while women chatter. Chatter may bring you to your grave.

Be calm and prudent, strong and resolute. Valour and enthusiasm of an offensive spirit will cause you to prevail in the attack.

The most precious thing in the presence of the foe is ammunition. He who shoots uselessly, merely to comfort himself, is a man of straw. He is a weakling who merits not the title of Fallschirmjager.
Never surrender. To you, death or victory must be a point of honor.

You can triumph only if your weapons are good. See to it that you submit to this law - first my weapons, then myself.

You must grasp the full purport of every enterprise, so that if your leader be killed you can yourself fulfill it.

Against an open foe fight with chivalry, but to a guerrilla extend no quarter.

Keep your eyes wide open. Tune yourself to the topmost pitch. Be nimble as the greyhound, as tough as leather, as hard as Krupp steel, and so you shall be the German Warrior incarnate.

CSM Gentry, with assistance from several enlisted Ranger battalion candidates, developed this draft of the Ranger Creed in June of 1974.

The Ranger Creed-Draft

Realizing that I volunteered as a Ranger, fully knowing the hazards of my chosen service, and by my actions will always uphold the prestige, honor, and high "esprit de corps" of the Ranger Battalion.

Acknowledging the fact that a Ranger is not merely a more elite soldier who arrives at the “cutting edge of battle,” by land, air, or sea, but one whose country expects him to move farther and faster than any other soldier.

Never shall I fail my comrades by shirking any duty or training, but I will always keep myself mentally alert, physically strong and morally straight and will shoulder more than my share of the task whatever it may be, 100 percent and then some.

Graciously I shall show the world by the courtesy to superior officers and noncommissioned officers, by neatness of dress, by care of my own equipment that I am especially selected and a well trained Ranger.

Every day I shall respect the abilities of my enemies, but remember that I am better trained and can defeat him on the fields of battle, for I shall fight with all my might. Surrender is not a Ranger word, and I will never leave a fallen comrade whereby he may fall into enemy hands. I shall never embarrass my country under any circumstances.

Realistically I shall display the intestinal fortitude required to fight on to the Ranger objectives and complete the mission, though I be the lone survivor.

“RANGERS LEAD THE WAY!”

LTC Leuer then passed the draft to Major Rock Hudson, battalion XO, for final refinement. “The Rock” further revised it to the point where LTC Leuer felt it was sufficiently polished to “go final.” Accordingly, in July of 1974, he had a Commander’s Call at the Ft Stewart headquarters with company commander’s, staff and Isgt’s. The group made small adjustments to the point where it is today. The next issue then was how to disseminate it and attach its manifest and emotional significance so it was as imbedded within each Ranger as the concept of PT and Road Marches.

The Creed was discussed at length by the commanders and senior NCO’s and its import quickly became apparent. This was a core item that would provide the Rangers a unique identity and be a right of passage providing both a psychological as well as real inclusion device for both individuals and the unit.

Each NCO and Officer was provided a copy of the Creed and required to train his people to memorize it. Evening sessions in squad bays reverberated with the Creed. New Ranger volunteers stumbled over the stanzas in front of a less than sympathetic squad leader. Rangers marching from barracks to mess to details all repeated it as a march cadence. And LTC Leuer led the way. The Monday morning Battalion PT, led by the battalion commander, was the key effective “instructional device” for the Creed.

The cadre soon learned that if the Commander made a passing comment or musing at the daily Commander’s Call, it was a precursor for a public demonstration. One day, very early after arrival from Ft Benning, he mentioned that stanzas of the Creed might be a good “wakeup” device at PT. Battalion PT was where every officer and NCO was vulnerable to exposure-hence there was a deliberate effort by the entire cadre to study those lines before Lights Out.

On the PT stand, in the dark, foggy and humid wrap of Ft Stewart in the Summer, LTC Leuer would say- “Commander Company B. First Stanza of the Ranger Creed.” That officer would then recite at top volume the right or wrong words. He did this for the entire Creed randomly selecting positions so no one was able to guess their vulnerability for demonstrated excellence. Very quickly, every leader got it right. What man wanted to publicly fail in front of his men and all others? If the Red Cockaded woodpecker could speak like a parrot, generations of Georgians who never wore a uniform would know the Creed by heart.

As the battalion grew and its cadre migrated to 2-75 and later 3-75 and Regiment, the Creed went with them as did the standards and what it meant to be a Ranger-exactly as General Abrams and Gen DePuy envisioned.. With Grenada and Urgent Fury, the Ranger’s gained National public recognition as being the best of the best and the Ranger Creed became the definition of a Ranger.

The present Ranger Creed clearly established a precedent within the US Army as a tool to define its soldiers and for the soldiers to define themselves. Note the contemporary US Army Creed.

I am an American Soldier.
I am a Warrior and a member of a team. I serve the people of the United States and live the Army Values.
I will always place the mission first.
I will never accept defeat.
I will never quit.
I will never leave a fallen comrade.
I am disciplined, physically and mentally tough, trained and proficient in my warrior tasks and drills. I always maintain my arms, my equipment and myself.
I am an expert and I am a professional.
I stand ready to deploy, engage, and destroy the enemies of the United States of America in close combat.
I am a guardian of freedom and the American way of life.
I am an American Soldier.

The Ranger Creed has grown from a memorized set of stanzas uncertainly repeated on a dark humid PT field at Ft Stewart, Georgia to a near universal guide to life, duty and performance for any person exposed to its words. The Creed is posted on walls around the world wherever Rangers have been and do their work. It is carefully folded and carried in thousands of rucksacks and notebooks. It resides on plaques and mementoes of retired Rangers and is indelibly etched in the mind of any soldier, sailor, airman or Marine who has worn the Tab or been associated with the Regiment or RTB.

The Creed is the first thing spoken in the morning and the last at night. It is the last non-operational item a Ranger will discuss before executing his assigned Ranger mission or jumping out the door into hostile territory.

The Ranger Creed is both the comfort and the courage that opens the wellsprings of the individual soldier and converts him from an ordinary to an extraordinary soldier and makes him truly the glory of our Nation.
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Out of the night that covers me,
Black as the Pit from pole to pole,
I thank whatever gods may be
For my unconquerable soul.
In the fell clutch of circumstance
I have not winced nor cried aloud.
Under the bludgeonings of chance
My head is bloody, but unbowed.
Beyond this place of wrath and tears
Looms but the Horror of the shade
And yet the menace of the years
Finds, and shall find, me unafraid.
It matters not how strait the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll,
I am the master of my fate
I am the captain of my soul.
-Invictus
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Old 14 September 2017, 17:06
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Mingo Kane Mingo Kane is offline
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I never knew the whole story, thank you. I still have the original video of the day Nightingale took over the 1st from Wesley Taylor--hot as fuck that day.
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Old 14 September 2017, 17:08
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Can this get permanently posted in the 75th area? History like that can't get lost for us younger Rangers.
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Old 14 September 2017, 19:09
Brian1/75 Brian1/75 is offline
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Thank you, gentlemen. I went ahead and edited that section to read as follows:

Quote:
The very first draft by CSM Neal R. Gentry used the phrasing "of the Ranger Battalion." Eventually, after some revisions on the overall creed, they settled on "of my Ranger Battalion." The Ranger School cadre later adopted the phrasing "of the Rangers" as seen in the Ranger Creed above.[3] After the formation of the 75th Ranger Regiment, members of all battalions adopted the wording, "of my Ranger Regiment", and this version remains in use throughout the regiment.[4]
We'll see if someone attempts to revert it back. That old section, according to edits, has been there in some form for 10+ years.
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Old 14 September 2017, 23:40
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I never knew the whole story, thank you. I still have the original video of the day Nightingale took over the 1st from Wesley Taylor--hot as fuck that day.
He was still Bn CDR when i got there....when he left then LTC(P) Buck Kernan took over, then commanded as a COL when he pinned his bird before he moved on.
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Old 15 September 2017, 07:15
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Can this get permanently posted in the 75th area? History like that can't get lost for us younger Rangers.
Done.
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Out of the night that covers me,
Black as the Pit from pole to pole,
I thank whatever gods may be
For my unconquerable soul.
In the fell clutch of circumstance
I have not winced nor cried aloud.
Under the bludgeonings of chance
My head is bloody, but unbowed.
Beyond this place of wrath and tears
Looms but the Horror of the shade
And yet the menace of the years
Finds, and shall find, me unafraid.
It matters not how strait the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll,
I am the master of my fate
I am the captain of my soul.
-Invictus
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Old 15 September 2017, 10:41
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ARCHANGELRANGER ARCHANGELRANGER is offline
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... of my Ranger Classes.

6-87, 7-87, 8-87, 9-87, 10-87, 11-87.
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"We were not sheep, for we knew the reality of violence; We were not wolves, for we respected humanity; We were not sheep dogs, for we “hunted” our adversaries. We were, in fact, lions; and in the land of the jackal… the lion fears no predator."
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Old 15 September 2017, 13:32
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Originally Posted by ARCHANGELRANGER View Post
... of my Ranger Classes.

6-87, 7-87, 8-87, 9-87, 10-87, 11-87.
I'll bet your TDY pay was ENORMOUS!!!!
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Old 15 September 2017, 17:18
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Freaking enroute. No TDY. :/
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"We were not sheep, for we knew the reality of violence; We were not wolves, for we respected humanity; We were not sheep dogs, for we “hunted” our adversaries. We were, in fact, lions; and in the land of the jackal… the lion fears no predator."
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Old 15 September 2017, 17:30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mingo Kane View Post
I never knew the whole story, thank you. I still have the original video of the day Nightingale took over the 1st from Wesley Taylor--hot as fuck that day.
How could you all forget James T "E&E" Scott, he was after Taylor
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Old 15 September 2017, 18:21
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Originally Posted by Ranger Manges View Post
How could you all forget James T "E&E" Scott, he was after Taylor
I truly don't remember him, no shit, my memory isn't as good as it used to be--too many head bumps....I do remember being on the field directly in front of 1276N when the change took place. Meagher has the tape (VCR) and is trying to get it transferred to a DVD--I have no idea how to do that kinda puter stuff...when he gets the job done I'll send you a copy--it also had the local news special when you guys got back from Urgent Fury, the PR deployment (yeah, the one with the chick newswoman yeah, I can't remember her name either, no shit), the 4 part news special Dan Rather did on Ranger School covering every phase, including desert phase, and a few CAPEX's done at Hunter. Go to Facebook and get on his ass. I just spent the weekend with him a few weeks ago.
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