We Remember Like It Was Yesterday

Thirty years ago today. The HORROR.

‘The worst part for me is that nobody remembers’: Retired Carmel Marine recalls 1983 Beirut bombings

The massive suicide bombing that ripped apart the four-story Marine barracks in Beirut, Lebanon, early Oct. 23, 1983 — killing 241 U.S. troops — violently shook Carmel resident Mark Nevells and other Marines from their Sunday morning slumber, he remembers.

“I grabbed my gear and ran to the barracks,” Nevells, who was 21 and a lance corporal with what was then the 24th Marine Amphibious Unit’s service support group during the terrorist attack, recalled Friday. “We watched as the building dropped then we went over for the recovery mission. There were so many people in that building and we just wanted to get them out.”

The explosion was so violent that it created an 8-foot crater and buried Nevells’ friends and brothers-in-arms under 15 feet of the building’s rubble. He and other Marines spent five days digging for survivors and freeing the bodies of the men they served with during the multinational peacekeeping mission.

“That was one of the hardest things I’ve ever done,” Nevells said while wearing a black Beirut veteran’s hat honoring those who perished during the bombing. “We just did what we had to do.

As always, I recommend The Root by Eric Hammel, if you can find a copy.

Semper Fi.

2 Responses to “We Remember Like It Was Yesterday”

  1. JeffS says:

    I remember as well. That was a dark day.

  2. Kathy Kinsley says:

    As do I. But he’s right. Most don’t. 🙁

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