Tribute To My Father
A Montford Point Marine

James Albert Ferren, Sr.
Plt. Sgt. US Marine Corps
World War II
November 16, 1910 - March 17, 1993

My father, James Albert Ferren, had the distinct priviledge of being one of the first African -Americans and the FIRST African-American from Glassboro, New Jersey to join the United States Marine Corps in February of 1943. When my father joined the Corps, blacks and whites did not mix. The black recruits were trained at Camp Montford Point now known as Camp Gilbert H. Johnson. My father served with the 51st Defense Battalion, Headquarters and Service Battery. He was inducted into the Marnie Corps February 9, 1943 and received an honorable discharge on February 4, 1946 having attained a Personal Conduct Record of 4.85 out of a possible 5.0... and rank of Plt. Sgt.. One year, Nine months and 29 days of his military tenure was spent in foreign or sea duty. While in the military, he received the World War II Victory Medal, American Campaign Medal and the Asiatic Pacific Campaign Medal.....all of which have been reproduced for me by the Department of Defense. After his service in the military, he began work at the Philadelphia Shipyard as an electrician's apprentice and quickly became a fully certified electrican. His last years before retirement were spent working at the Naval Shipyard in Lakehrurst, New Jersey. My father left this world as we know it for a better one on March 17, 1993, St. Patrick's Day. Leave it to a Montford Marine to pick a day for his final farewell that would stand out in our memories. Interment was at the New Jersey Veteran's Cemetery in Arreytown, New Jersey. Taps were played as two Marines...a white male and a black female...stood on either end of the flag drapped coffin. We laid Daddy to rest on March 23, 1993 in a beautiful serene area beside a lake. He loved the water so very much so we know that he is happy there with the Creator. Daddy loved his Marine Corps with a passion and spoke so often of Montford Point and his experience as being one of the first black Marines right up until his passing. I am so very proud to be the mother of his granddaughter, Navy Commander (Retired) Carolyn R. Owens who proudly gave 24 years of her life serving our country. She shared an extremely strong military bound with her grandfather, and I feel so very blessed that God allowed him to see her commissioned a Naval officer. Daddy never tired of talking about his days in the Corps. You may not see his name in history books, but my father, PLT. SGT. JAMES A. FERREN, was one of the pioneers that gave the African-American Marine the right to fight. Iknow that my daddy is now a part of that great cloud of witnesses that includes Abraham, Issac and Jacob...and I know that he is smiling down on me, proud of what I have done to preserve the history of his precious Montford Point Marines... and I know that makes my daddy one very proud Marine! Daddy told me once that the gates of heaven were guarded by the United States Marine Corps, so I know he must have been elated when he crossed over and was reunited with those Montford Pointers who went ahead of him. May they all rest in eternal peace with our Creator.

God saw you getting tired
And a cure was not to be
So He put His arms around you
And whispered "Come with me"
We watched you suffer
And we saw you fade away
Although we loved you dearly
We could not make you stay
A golden heart stopped beating
Hard working hands at rest
God broke our hearts to prove
He only takes the best
It's lonesome here without you
We miss you everyday
Life doesn't seem the same
Since you've gone away
When days are sad and lonely
And everything goes wrong
We seem to hear you whisper
"Cheer up and carry on"
Each time we see your picture
You seem to smile and say
"Don't cry, I'm in God's keeping
We'll meet again some day."

~From The Very Proud Daughter of a Montford Point Marine~
~I Love You Daddy~
~Rest In Peace and Hold a Spot in Heaven for Me~

The Montford Point Marines

The Infantryman's Creed
There are many like it but this one is mine.
My rifle is my best friend.
It is my life.
I must master it as I master my life.
My rifle without me is useless.
Without my rifle, I am useles.
I must fire my rifle true.
I must shoot straighter than any enemy
who is trying to kill me.
I must shoot him before he shoots me.
I will........
My rifle and myself
I know that what counts in this war
is not the rounds we fire,
the noise of our burst,
nore the smoke we make.
We know that it is the hits that count.
We will hit........
My rifle is human, even as I,
because it is my life.
Thus, I will learn it as a brother.
I will learn its weakness, its strengths,
its parts, its accessories, its sights

and its barrel.
I will keep my rifle clean and ready,
even as I am clean and ready.
We will become part of each other.
We will........
Before God I swear this creed.
My rifle and myself
Are the defenders of my country.
We are the masters of our enemy.
We are the saviors of my life.
So be it,
Until victory is America's
and there is no enemy, but Peace.

The rusty Marine, born gallant and brave
To his country his alleginance raised.
He served in war to honor and protect
In battle he did not defect.

Through foxholes, trenches, gunfire and hell
His honor and pride never fell.
For in his heart, his faith was strong
Yet for home he did long.

Now he sits, tired and forlorn
For his youth he does mourn.
Because it ran so quickly by
He often thinks, "How time did fly!"

Then he dons his old dress blues
And in his spirit, a change of hues.
He straightens up and stands with pride
His great honor he cannot hide.

Then he begins to gently weep
The memories come, pile upon heap.
A single tear falls from his eye
As he whispers, "Semper Fi."
~By Jennifer A. Wallace~

~All Things~
"All things work together for good."
Sometimes that's hard to say,
When all your hopes and all your dreams

And plans have gone astray.
And though you cannot reason why
Some trials fall on you.
They are sometimes hard to explain
Any yet God's Word is true.

Most times we do the things we want,
And God just tags along;
Then when we've made a mess of things
We wonder what went wrong.
The truth is, we have not obeyed
Or done the things we should
And yet our God, in spite of us,
Works all things for the good.

It takes alot of faith at times
To let God have His way
So He can tear the idols down
that we may build up each day.
Sometimes we pay an awful price
Before we see the light
Still God has promised in His Word
All things will turn out right.

Things always turn out for the best
When you are on God's side
When you by faith have claimed His Son
And in His death abide.
And though we may not do the things
Or live the life we should
Somehow the Lord will work all things
Together for the good.

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