Sunday, March 09, 2014

A Warrior Passes

I just learned today that another of my heroes has passed away.  Major R.O. "Dick" Culver, USMC (Ret.) was well-known in the military shooting community.  For many years, he and his wife Gloria have maintained a website that became a vibrant community and a valuable source of information on military firearms.  I found it to be indispensable when I was new to the world of military arms shooting and collecting.  I had always hoped to meet the major someday, but it was not to be.  He was a true American Patriot who served his country and his community faithfully and well. Thank you for your service, Major Culver.  R.I.P.

Here is Major Culver's obituary, with links to his web page and permanent online memorial at the bottom:

A Warrior Passes

Major Richard O. Culver, Jr. USMC (Ret)
April 9th, 1936--February 24th, 2014

Major Richard O. Culver, Jr., USMC, (Ret) known to all as “Dick”, passed on to Sky Six on Monday evening, February 24th, in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho. Dick was often known as “the Jouster” because he fearlessly addressed any topic, whether military or political, with gusto. He and his wife, Gloria, hosted the website “Culver’s Shooting Page--Gun Talk”, and served as the Sniping/Countersniping contributing editor to Soldier of Fortune.

Dick had the distinction of being the first child born on Alcatraz Island (4-9-1936). His father was a lieutenant in the guard section, and he and his wife lived in the family quarters on the island. His father, LtCol. Richard O. Culver, USMC (Ret), was also a Marine, and fought in the “Banana Wars” and served in China. Dick enlisted in the Marines at age 17 and after his enlistment attended college at Virginia Military Institute (1954-58) majoring in physics. After graduation he received a commission in the Marine Corps. A Force Recon Marine, his later combat experience occurred in Vietnam where he served as a company commander in an infantry battalion. While serving as skipper of H Co., 2nd Battalion, 3rd Marines in Vietnam, Dick was awarded the Silver Star for actions that occurred on July 21st, 1967 during a firefight with a North Vietnamese Army company. Dick exposed himself to fire several times, rallied his Marines, coordinated fire and medevacs, called in artillery and air support, and forced the enemy to break contact after suffering numerous casualties.

After Vietnam, it was decided to form a permanent Scout/Sniper program in the Marine Corps instead of losing the skills as had happened after past wars when sniper programs were disbanded as soon as the war ended. Major Culver helped form, and commanded, the first USMC Scout-Sniper Instructor School, formed at Quantico. His senior NCO was famed Marine Corps sniper GySgt Carlos Hathcock. Also playing a key part in the organization and logistics of the school was Major E. James Land, who is now Executive Secretary of the NRA, and served as Hathcock’s commander in Vietnam when Land established the 1st Marine Division Sniper School near Da Nang.

Major Culver is survived by his wife, Gloria, of Cour d’Alene, and his son James R. Culver of Dothan, Alabama. Dick will be sorely missed by all.

Internment will be at Arlington National Cemetery, Arlington, VA.

Culver's Shooting Page

Permanent Online Memorial and Life Legacy

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