News: Amphibian Vietnam veterans reunite to remember 21 years of history
MARINE CORPS BASE CAMP LEJEUNE, N.C. — Vietnam veterans who served with 2nd Assault Amphibian Battalion held a reunion May 23, 2013, to remember the past and get in touch with the present, aboard Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune, N.C.
During the reunion, veterans participated in many events, rode in amphibious assault vehicles and had multiple guided discussions about how AAVs have improved since the Vietnam War.
As the veterans boarded the AAVs, they explained how riding the AAVs brought back old memories and flashbacks.
"It was wonderful. It was like coming home," said Robert Glausier, a former first lieutenant who served with 2nd AA Bn.
Upon the conclusion of the AAV rides, 2nd AA Bn. held an open forum about the upgrades in the vehicles performance and the mechanical advances the AAVs have undergone.
"The only things I could identify were the A1 and A2," said Glausier.
After the guided discussion, all the retirees reflected on how the facilities and the AAV's were built and maintained when they were serving in the corps.
"I retired 43 years ago and that building there was not there," said Glausier while pointing at a building. "It was a big long metal building then."
Many of the retirees had vivid memories of their activities and surroundings when they were station at Camp Lejeune.
“Battalion maintenance was in the first building and motor transport was in the second building. We lived in the sand and the dirt and all the vehicles were in the dirt when did our job. We always did what we had to.”
As a leader in the Marine Corps, Glausier trained many junior Marines. Some of them were at the reunion as well.
Former Sgt. Phillip Anninos, a resident of Palm Coast, Fla., served with Glausier when they were in Vietnam.
"He was always fair. He never burned anybody. He'll chew you out, but he'd never burn you," said Sgt. Anninos. "Who would have thought 46 years later, he would become one of my best friends?"
At the conclusion of the event, the veterans agreed that they enjoyed their time and by far this was one of the most exciting reunions they've had.
"It was wonderful, it was like coming home," said Glausier.