Marine Corps Tour

Fresh out of High School I left Canada and enlisted in the Marine Corps on 12 November 1963. During my enlistement of four years I served with the 2nd and 1st Marine Divisions, Fleet Marine Force.

I completed my Basic Training with the 2nd Recruit Training Battalion, "K" Company, Platoon 291, MCRD Parris Island, South Carolina in early January, 1964. Upon completion, I was assigned to "Camp Geiger" N.C. for Basic Infantry Training and then to the "H&S" Company, 81mm Mortar Platoon, 3rd Battalion, "Betio Battalion", 2nd Marine Regiment, 2nd Marine Division in Camp Lejeune, North Carolina.

In 1964 we were deployed as Battalion Landing Team 3/2 to the Carribean, this was my first experience with Ocean travel and the Navy on board APA 44 the USS FREMONT.

In 1965 our Battalion was deployed to the Mediterranean and our Platoon traveled on board APA 31 the USS MONROVIA, with our return, most of us were reassigned to units in Southeast Asia.

After a brief stay in Camp Pendelton for a "refresher infantry course" it was off to Okinawa and Vietnam. When I arrived "in country" in the month of June 1966, being an "0341" I expected to join a Mortar Platoon but instead I was assigned to Headquarters Company 7th Marine Regiment S-2 Section.

The "Prepared to Fight 7th" was deployed in Chu Lai, and was under "OPCON" of "Task Force X-Ray" since the 1st Marine Divison was redeployed to Da Nang. The 7th Marine and elements of the 5th Marine Regiments TAOR included Quang Ngai and Quang Tin Provinces RVN. In April 1967 the 7th Marines in Chu Lai were given marching orders to move North and we were replaced by the 196th Light Infantry Brigade, U.S. Army. Headquarters Company moved to HILL 55 which was located approximately 20 miles southwest of DaNang where I completed my tour "in country" July 1967 and returned back to the "World" .

Prior to be released from active duty in November, I was stationed in Camp Pendleton, California with HQ Correctional Services Co.

"I Have Been, I Have Seen, I Am Thankful To Be Alive"
Victor Vilionis, 0341/0231, Sgt E-5 USMC

Platoon 291 MCRD Parris Is. SC | 81mm Mortars, 3rd Bn 2nd Marines | My Artwork |