After the 1961 assassination of Dominican dictator Rafael Trujillo, a one-time Marine Corps protege, the Marines quieted local unrest with a bloodless air-ground demonstration. But by April 1965, President Lyndon Johnson was so sure of an imminent Communist takeover of the little Dominican Republic that he piled Army and Marine Corps troops, plus some token representation from other Latin American countries, onto the island. The Marine landing force ballooned into the 4th Marine Expeditionary Brigade. The Army air landed a brigade of the 82nd Airborne Division. Some street fighting occured, and nine Marines were killed and another thirty wounded.
Source: Marine Corps Heritage Foundation
By: Doug Smith
I Company, 3rd Battalion, 6th Marines were the first to make a beach landing in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic after the revolution started. Wewere the point company. The date was April 28, 1965. I Company then formed two columns and walked into the city, receiving gunfire. We then were loaded into Amtracks and were taken within a block of the rebel stronghold.We then disembarked into several narrow streets where the rebels where the rebels began firing machine guns down on us. Several in my squad were hit. We raced to the sides of the street and started making our way forward. Within the next several hours we had several Marines killed and many wounded. Within the next several hours we had several Marines killed and many wounded. One buddy of mine, PFC Benware, was shot in the heart in the middle of that street. As we moved forward, another Marine ,PFC Stratton,in my platoon was shot in the throat and Doc had to cut a hole and stick a plastic tube in this throat for him to breathe. We continued to take heavy fire as we moved. Another Marine ,PFC Sapp,was shot in the arm by machine gun fire that left a hugh hole in the elbow area. Several Marines were being dragged by as we continued forward. There was not enough Corpmen to take care of all the wounded. Later we passed a bloody sheet that we found out later was covering the bodies of a small girl and boy that had been blown up by a grenade. My buddy and I found a yard and moved on our elbows in the dark for what seemed like two hours to an apartment building, climbed to a second story porch and stayed there until morning. During the night we heard a machine gun spurt and later found out that PFC Brown, in our squad, had been shot 4 times in the chest and died instantly. The next day we secured the city. That's pretty much my story.
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