I want to take a minute or two out your day to honor a friend, a patriot, and a great American.
My friend, Cpl Thomas A. Zangrilli of the 1st Marine Division (Golf 2/5 & Hotel 2/7) served 3 tours of duty in Vietnam from 1966 to 1969, carrying with him the traditions of those brave men who fought at Belleau Wood, Meusse-Argonne, Guadalcanal, Cape Gloucester, Peleliu, and Okinawa.
Bearing the weight of the standard set by the 2nd Battalion/5th Marine Regiment at the Chosin Reservoir, they carried the legacy of fierce battle to Hue City, Que Son, Phu Bai, Dong Ha and Phu Loc.
Marines of the Old Breed passed the torch and the young Marines of the 2/5 carried the fight to America’s enemies at Ramadi, Fallujah, Baghdad, & the Helmland Province of Afghanistan.
Following his duty in Vietnam, Tommy Z exemplified what it means to be an American. He owned a store in Chicago in a neighborhood which eventually gave way to urban decay. Tommy Z stayed in his business, never being intimidated by the crime or criminals who perpetrated it.
Upon his eventual retirement, he spent his time with his wife, his family, and his brothers from the United States Marine Corps. As a member of multiple Marine Corps organizations, Tommy donated money and time to insuring that the legacy of those who offered their all, would never be forgotten. As a proud supporter of the Wounded Warrior Project, Tommy spent more time than most, welcoming home the wounded among our best & brightest.
It was not unusual for him to travel to a funeral of a fallen American serviceman to offer his respect. Never one to bite his tongue, he lived the ideal of free speech. After a lengthy battle with cancer, Cpl Thomas A. Zangrilli, USMC, has been called home to be with his Lord.
Rest in peace, my brother. You earned it.