08-12 NOVEMBER 2021





 We have four things on our agenda this year.


  1.  2/9 Jam Session with the Gallatin Canyon Band on Tuesday, 09 November.
  2. Marine Corps Birthday Dinner on Wednesday, 10 November.
  3. Attend USMC Wreath Laying Ceremony at the Marine Corps War Memorial (Iwo Jima Memorial), the morning of 10 November.
  4. For Vietnam members and any others who wish to participate, our trip to The Wall to visit our brothers following completion of our Birthday Dinner.


Our problems lie with the Jam Session and Birthday Dinner.  We have been unable to obtain venues for either.  Virginia still has a maximum number of 50 people at group gatherings in effect due to the virus.  That means the venues will NOT book groups at this time, and we cannot even obtain an estimate of cost.  The Marriott Key Bridge, the hotel that has hosted our Birthday Dinner for several years, has an additional issue with ongoing renovations.  Our negotiator-in-chief, Debbie Crist, is working hard to overcome these issues.  As soon as we have final details I’ll get word out via a group email or the next Battalion Runner Newsletter.  The good news is we hope to be able to cover all expenses so the only out of pocket costs for attendees will be the room charge and parking at the Residence Inn.  I cannot tell you that is a guarantee since we don’t know how much this will all cost us but am fairly confident that is what will happen.


Our 2/9 Jam Session, with the Gallatin Canyon Band, will hopefully be held late afternoon on 09 November, probably from 15-1800 or 16-1900 hours, depending on the venue.  Light food and a cash bar will be available.  Ben Hernandez, son of 2/9 Network’s own Dan Hernandez, is bringing Gallatin Canyon from Charlottesville in honor of his Dad.  They are primarily a Blue Grass band but play other music and specialize in jam session type appearances. Plan on a great afternoon of relaxation, entertainment and mixing with 2/9 members, family and friends.  The jam session will be open to ANY 2/9 member and family/friends.  You do NOT have to be officially attending the reunion.  If you are in the D.C. area come on out and join us Tuesday afternoon on 09 November.  Once we know where I’ll let everyone know.

Our Birthday Dinner on 10 November normally runs from 1800 to approximately 2200 hours.  The dinner includes the meal, a cash bar, youngest/oldest Marine ceremony, special guest speaker(s), and results of our reunion raffle and 50/50 raffle. 

Since it is still early in the year the Marine Corps has not yet decided on what they will be doing for the official Marine Corps Wreath Laying Ceremony at the Iwo Jima Memorial.  If, as I expect, HQMC returns to the traditional ceremony it will include the Commandant, a special guest speaker, the President’s Own and Commandant’s own performing, 8th & I marching in review and the laying of the wreath.  After the ceremonies the Commandant normally joins us for a group photo in front of the Memorial.  Start time is always 1000 hours on The Birthday.

After completion of our Birthday Dinner we all return to the Residence Inn before leaving for our annual visit to the Vietnam Wall to see our brothers.  As many of you already know we lost Keith Fay after our 2019 reunion.  Keith was one of our four members who took on the task of fund raising for our 2/9 Memorial Plaque currently on display in the Semper Fidelis Memorial Park on the grounds of the National Museum of the Marine Corps in Triangle, VA.  John Klemm has let me know that we will be honoring Keith’s life with a special ceremony on the evening we take this trip to The Wall.  This will be a somber but fitting tribute to an outstanding Marine brother who is gone too soon.   

Transportation will be provided for all of the above.




Room rates at the Residence Inn this year are $135/night plus tax (around 13-14%).  Parking for those who drive is $11.00 per night.  Normal parking is $22 but we have a half priced deal in our contract with the hotel.  The hotel has constructed a special web page for us to book your room.  The link is provided below.  If the link does NOT work please go to the original message I sent that this newsletter is attached to.  I placed the link at the end of that email and that should work.  You can also call to make your reservation (Dial 1-800-331-3131), or copy and paste the link below into your browser.  Tell them you are booking a room under the “2/9 Reunion Room Block”.  You must reserve your room no later than end of the day 08 October 2021.  After that date rooms revert back to the hotel and are only available on a space available basis and you may have to pay the “going rate”, around $250/night.  At the moment we have 50 rooms set aside for us.  We almost always exceed that number and the hotel increases the number for us.  If you call and rooms are NOT available under our group rate please notify me ASAP so I can contact them to expand the number of rooms.  Officially the reunion runs from 08-12 November but our special rate is available from 07-13 November if you wish to come early and/or leave late.  You can cancel your reservation at no charge up to 48 hours before your scheduled arrival and also must guarantee your reservation with a credit card.  MAKE SURE YOU GET A CONFIRMATION NUMBER!

We have our hospitality room all booked from 08-12 November.  It is on the 1st floor of the hotel and will be open continuously with free snacks and beverages, including beer, water and soft drinks, available.  We’ll be displaying our raffle items, selling 50/50 raffle tickets and 2/9 gear in that room.

One last reunion note.  This reunion is for everyone.  We don’t care if you are a WWII, Vietnam, Iraq, Afghanistan veteran or a peacetime member.  We are all 2/9, and that’s all that matters.  If you are one of those Vietnam Veterans who has always said I’d really like to go to a reunion but end up putting it off until “next year” I’d ask that you consider something.  I’m really getting tired and saddened of hearing from family members that John, Harry, Pete, or Ed always wanted to go to a reunion but kept putting it off.  He passed away last year.  If you can do it please consider our reunion.  We want this to be the biggest and best ever!  I don’t think you’d regret attending. 


Reservation Link: