I am a 44-year-old police officer who served in the Corps on active duty during 1975-79 as a Corrections Specialist. I've long been interested in the history of the Marine Corps and in recent years even wrote several books about the Marine Paratroopers and Raiders.

Anyway, as we all know, the Corps is justly proud of its history and teaches it in boot camp. One of the items we'd been required to learn was who the "Grand Old Man of the Marine Corps" was - Archibald Henderson, who served longer than any other commandant.

While I was stationed in the MP Company at Parris Island, around 1976, we had an inspection by the company commander, a first lieutenant. The officer stopped in front of a new private and asked "Who was the Grand Old Man of the Marine Corps?"

The private, being new and very nervous about the inspection, got so rattled that he somehow came up with the name of the character from the 1970's TV show "All in the Family." He blurted out, "Archie Bunker, sir!"

The incredulous lieutenant glared at him and then demanded, "Do you think I'm crazy?"

The flustered private quickly made matters worse by shouting back, "Yes, sir!"

His punishment was to "write-off," like a kid in school, several hundred times, that the Grand Old Man of the Marine Corps was Archibald Henderson.

Semper Fi!