GRIM: I promised a group of Marine wives I would ask you this. They tell me that the Semper Fi Injured Marine Fund has had to lower its ceiling on grants and that the Marine Corps has had to cut back on the per diem they can give to families to fly out to be with injured Marines. That being said -- and of course, we understand the reasons for that -- we would like to know what more we can do to help the regiment and the units keep in touch with their injured Marines, help them out and kind of serve as a bridge between the regiment, the injured Marine, his new unit and the family.
COL. SIMCOCK: I can't comment on the per diem being reduced as far as families being supported to come out and see their injured Marines. But I will tell you this -- my wife volunteers for the wounded Marines program. She's a certified public accountant by trade, and I know that she gets -- because she is the accountant, she takes care of the books. We get a tremendous amount of donations that are made to support this organization, obviously tax-deductible type donations, and it's been a very, very successful operation for us in supporting what needs to be done.
Now, I would just say, to get the information regarding your question, if you call Headquarters - Marine Corps Public Affairs, they can give you details on how family members or anyone interested in supporting this very, very successful program -- what they can do to help out in that regard.
GRIM: Is there anything that you and your Marines need that we could send you?
COL. SIMCOCK: (Chuckles.) I’ll tell you what, the one thing that all Marines want to know about — and that includes me and everyone within Regimental Combat Team 6 — we want to know that the American public are behind us. We believe that the actions that we’re taking over here are very, very important to America. We’re fighting a group of people that, if they could, would take away the freedoms that America enjoys.
If anyone — you know, just sit down, jot us — throw us an e- mail, write us a letter, let us know that the American public are behind us. Because we watch the news just like everyone else. It’s broadcast over here in our chow halls and the weight rooms, and we watch that stuff, and we’re a little bit concerned sometimes that America really doesn’t know what’s going on over here, and we get sometimes concerns that the American public isn’t behind us and doesn’t see the importance of what’s going on. So that’s something I think that all Marines, soldiers and sailors would like to hear from back home, that in fact, yes, they think what we’re doing over here is important and they are in fact behind us.
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