List of historic United States Marines
The following is a list of the prominent names in U. S. Marine Corps lore—the people who make up what the Marines call "Knowledge". Names in this list are notable for actions made as a Marine; individuals whose notability is unrelated to service in uniform can be found at List of United States Marines.
Medal of Honor recipients
- Smedley Butler – awarded two Medals of Honor for two different acts outspoken critic of war profiteers, testified in Congress regarding a plot to overthrow the government
- Dan Daly – awarded two Medals of Honor for two different acts
- John Basilone – only enlisted Marine Medal of Honor recipient to return to combat and be killed
- Gregory "Pappy" Boyington – Medal of Honor recipient who commanded the famous "Black Sheep Squadron" (VMA-214) during WWII
- Louis Cukela – awarded both Navy and Army Medals of Honor
- Merritt A. Edson – Medal of Honor recipient and commander of the 1st Marine Raiders Battalion
- Joe Foss – leading fighter ace of the Marine Corps during World War II and Medal of Honor recipient, recognizing his role in the air combat during the Guadalcanal Campaign
- Jacklyn H. Lucas – youngest Marine to receive the Medal of Honor
- John Lucian Smith – Medal of Honor recipient and flying ace in the battle of Guadalcanal
Marine Corps firsts
- Vernice Armour – first female African-American combat pilot in United States military
- Frederick C. Branch – first African-American Marine officer
- Marion Carl – First Marine Ace (18.5 victories), member of the Cactus Air Force, first Marine helicopter pilot
- John L. Estrada – the first person of Hispanic descent promoted to Sergeant Major of the Marine Corps
- Annie Neal Graham – first African American woman Marine
- Opha May Johnson – recognized officially as the first woman Marine
- James L. Jones, Sr. – commanded the Observer Group, the first amphibious reconnaissance unit in the United States; father of James L. Jones, Jr., the 32nd Commandant of the Marine Corps
- John F. Mackie – first Marine awarded the Medal of Honor
- Alfred Masters – first African American in the United States Marine Corps
- Dennis M. McCarthy – first Reserve General Officer to command an active duty Marine Division
- Alford L. McMichael – first African American Marine to serve as Sergeant Major of the Marine Corps
- Samuel Nicholas – first Commandant of the Marine Corps
- Peter Pace – first Marine to become the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (2005–2007), previously the Vice Chairman (2001–2005)
- Frank E. Petersen – first African-American aviator Marine, first African-American Marine general, first African-American to command a fighter squadron, a fighter air group, an air wing and a major base.
- Angela Salinas – the first Hispanic female to obtain a general rank in the Marines
- France Silva – the first Marine of Hispanic descent to be awarded the Medal of Honor
- Pedro del Valle – first Hispanic to reach the rank of lieutenant general, played an instrumental role in defeating Japanese forces during the Battle of Okinawa
- John Glenn – first Marine astronaut, first American and fly the Project Mercury spacecraft, first American to orbit the Earth
- Minnie Spotted-Wolf – first enlisted Native American woman Marine
Other prominent Marines
- John Bolt – only Marine aviator to achieve the title of ace in both WWII and the Korean War; remains to this day the only Marine jet aircraft ace
- Evans Carlson – commanded the World War II Marine Raiders, also credited with introducing the term Gung-ho into the Marine Corps.
- Alfred Cunningham – patron of Marine Corps aviation, innovative thinker in introducing air support, helped create the Advanced Base Force
- Lou Diamond – "Mr. Leatherneck," namesake of the actor Lou Diamond Phillips
- Earl H. Ellis – conducted espionage missions in Micronesia that influenced the planning of the island-hopping campaigns of World War II
- Guy Gabaldon – captured (or persuaded to surrender) about 1,000 Japanese soldiers and numerous civilians during the Battle of Saipan (1944)
- Carlos Hathcock – renowned Marine sniper with 93 confirmed kills during the Vietnam War
- Ira Hayes – Native American flag raiser on Iwo Jima during World War II
- Archibald Henderson – "Grand old man of the Marine Corps," longest-serving Commandant of the Marine Corps (1820–1859)
- Albert L. Ireland – received the most Purple Hearts, nine.
- Victor H. Krulak – developed new concepts in expeditionary warfare, such as use of Higgins landing craft and helicopters; father of Charles C. Krulak, 31st Commandant of the Marine Corps
- John A. Lejeune – 13th Commandant of the Marine Corps, Commanding General of the U.S. Army's 2nd Infantry Division, and author of the birthday message read aloud at every Marine Corps Birthday Ball ceremony
- Chuck Mawhinney – Marine sniper with most confirmed kills, all occurring during the Vietnam War
- Presley O'Bannon – famous for his exploits in the First Barbary War
- Lewis Burwell "Chesty" Puller – received five Navy Crosses, and the Army Distinguished Service Cross
- John Ripley – highly decorated Marine, only living person (at the time) to be memorialized in the Naval Academy's museum, first Marine inducted into the Ranger hall of fame
- Dion Williams – patron of naval and amphibious reconnaissance, hoisted the first American flag raised over Spanish soil in the Spanish–American War
- "Double Recipients". Full List of MOH Recipients. Congressional Medal of Honor Society. Retrieved 2007-10-14.
- "Scott, Stephen W.", (2009) Sergeant Major Dan Daly; The Most Outstanding Marine of all Time. Publishamerica Publishers. ISBN 1-60836-465-8.
- "John Basilone Parade Website". Retrieved 2008-05-25.
- "Major Gregory "Pappy" Boyington – C.O. VMF-214, Black Sheep Squadron". AcePilots.com. Retrieved 2008-05-25.
- "WWII vet who was youngest Medal of Honor winner dies". The Seattle Times via Associated Press. June 5, 2008. Retrieved 19 June 2011.
- "Sgt. Maj. of Marine Corps sword of office changes hands" (Press release). Division of Public Affairs, United States Marine Corps. July 2, 2003. Release # 0703-03-0537. Retrieved 2007-01-24.
- "African American Milestones in Naval History". African American Milestones in Naval History. Naval History and Heritage Command. Retrieved 2012-02-12.
- "Marine Corps Board Knowledge". Retrieved 2008-05-25.
- Shaw, Jr., Henry I.; Donnelly, Ralph W. (1995). "Blacks in the Marine Corps". Air University. Retrieved December 1, 2011. p. 2
- Coral Anika Theill. "WORLD WAR II Montford Point Marines: Honoring And Preserving Their Legacy". Leatherneck Magazine. Retrieved December 1, 2011.
- Williams, Janette (2011-09-20). "Political activist Isabell Masters, whose presidential ambitions started in Pasadena, dies at 98". Pasadena Star-News. Retrieved 2011-10-08.
- Williams, Rudi (February 6, 2004). "Marine Corps' Magnetism Beckons Future General into World of Elite Warfighters". DefenseLINK News. U.S. Department of Defense. Archived from the original on 2006-10-14. Retrieved 2006-10-15.
- "Official Biography of Angela Salinas". United States Marine Corps. Archived from the original on 2007-12-12. Retrieved 2007-12-28.
- "History of the Women Marines". Women Marines Association. Archived from the original on 2006-06-16. Retrieved 2006-08-10.
- Dorr (2005), p.164–65.
- "Lieutenant Colonel Alfred Austell Cunningham, USMC". Marine Corps Legacy Museum. Retrieved 2008-05-25.
- Allan R. Millett, "Semper Fidelis: The History of the United States Marine Corps", (New York, NY: The New Press, 1991).
- "Corporal Ira Hamilton Hayes, USMCR". Who's Who in Marine Corps History. History Division, United States Marine Corps. Retrieved 2006-09-01.
- "Colonel and Brevet Brigadier General Archibald Henderson, USMC". Who's Who in Marine Corps History. History Division, United States Marine Corps. Retrieved 2008-05-25.
- Miller, Steven (2009-01-03). "Military Innovator Who Sought New Approach to Battle in Vietnam". Wall Street Journal. Retrieved 2009-01-03.
- Perry, Tony (2000-01-22). "A Sniper at Peace With His Duties". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2011-04-16.
- "Noteworthy Marines". Tun-Tavern.com. Retrieved 2007-02-10.
- "USMC Knowledge". NROTC, Boston University. Retrieved 2008-05-25.
- Dorr, Robert F. (2005). Marine Air - The History of the Flying Leathernecks in Words and Photos. Penguin Group. ISBN 0-425-20725-0.
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