2023 In Review

As we wrap up number 9 and I update all kinds of stuff on this website, we have so much to remember. Idaho is such a beautiful place from the high snow capped mountains to the vast flatlands, this year’s reunion wins the prize of the most beautiful reunion we’ve had yet.

In total, we had 40 in attendance, 25 Marines with 15 significant others.

The Hosts

First and foremost, special thanks to Cole, Maddy, and your family for allowing us to come stay at your ranch. You are exceptional hosts with a beautiful family. Many of us were touched by the personalized, hand-written cards that McKinley made thanking us for our service, bringing some of us to tears. You are truly amazing & caring people.

If you have not yet left a review for them, please help them out by leaving a 5 star review. You don’t have to spend too much time doing so, but anything to help bring their average rating up.

Leave Them A Review

The Boots

We have 4 new boots this year, all of them from second platoon:

  1. Billie Lucas w/Ora Lucas
  2. Shane Martin w/Kelli Martin
  3. Shawn Puryear w/Michelle Puryear
  4. John Reina

YOUR MISSION: As the newest boots to these reunions, you have automatically been enrolled in the Buddy System. You are a boot until you bring a new recruit that hasn’t been to a Golf Company reunion. Good luck!

Some Highlights

While not everybody participated in every one of the reindeer games mentioned below, some of the items below might not make sense but to most it will.

Some of the memories that come to my mind are:

  • A fun Combat Kickball Game that ended too early… apparently still in a weather delay
  • Sweet McKinley giving us those hand made “Thank you for your service” cards
  • Steelhead fishing in the pond in the freezing early morning
  • Marrapode attempting to teach some how to fish
  • Side-by-side rentals for a few folks touring the surrounding mountains
  • An unusually short single elimination cornhole tourney
  • Tim Elyea FINALLY winning a cornhole tourney
  • Puryear’s Campfire Karaoke with special guest star Julie DeOrzio
  • A new nickname “Pissypants”
  • More ass plants than I can keep track of and immunity in the Bunkhouse
  • A 3.5 hour drive from Boise through the most majestic scenery
  • Rough & expensive travels for some with a new RV and a dog that I kept mistaking for a local coyote
  • Ice cold mornings and scalding hot days
  • Drone & Fire Ring: 1 – DT & a spoon: 0
  • Girls water slide with a “runaway” dog (not sure who gets the points on this one)
  • Dirty’s Milkshake (thanks for THAT image Wendy)
  • A small 5 minute fireworks show to replace MRE heaters
  • A Changing of the Colors hump to the top with 99% Marine participation rate. Congrats to the “handicapped.” I’m so proud of everyone that made it
  • Way too much food and not enough Nutter Butters
  • My 30 year old blue Japanese smoking jacket with “over 100 dragons” on it (read that with a mamasan or papasan accent)
  • A very special, powerful, & personal message from Travis and his fellow pastors


Working Party NCO Award

Dave Nidy

Black military entrenching tool with bronze plaque
A crystal cross affixed to the top of a black base

The Host Award

Travis Turner

Farthest Traveled Award

Paul Gauvin

(challenge coin, USMC blanket, & $100)

A perfect attendance plaque

Perfect Attendance Awards

David Ball – 0331
Robert Marrapode – 0341
Petey Szanto – 0351

Special Thanks & Recognition

Special thanks to those that helped cook this year’s meals: Rob, John, Linda, Chad, Petey, Gerry, Tim, & if I forgot anybody else, apologies. Incidentally, if you’d like to volunteer in the future to make a meal, let us know ahead of time… don’t wait until we get to the reunion.

Thank you to (almost) everybody for cleaning the May Family Ranch Saturday morning before we left. I’m sure the guests that checked in just 3 hours after we left are happy that we left it cleaner than we found it.

Thank you John Mooney for the time, effort and financially sponsoring the awards given out this year.

Thank you Liv for helping me count, sort, fold, then ship the fundraiser shirt. You made it easier than doing it by myself.

Thank you Travis for a very powerful message Sunday morning. I know we all stood a little taller that day after hearing your words. You are inspirational and are good at what you do.

Finally, thank you Rob Marrapode for partnering with me to keep these reunions going. I think I speak for the both of us by saying it is definitely a labor of love. It’s challenging and sometimes very time consuming to say the least but well worth the effort once we see the smiles on faces every year.


Please submit any photos you may have. While there may be similar pictures, you may have some that others do not… don’t hoard the memories. I’ll get them converted for the website and published as soon as possible.

If you have any from last year, or any previous years for that matter, feel free to send them in.

On to the next one…

As discussed in Idaho, for the next one we head back to Alabama where it all began for the very special 10th reunion. We started with 8 Marines from Weapons Platoon back in 2012 not knowing that it would have grown to what it is today. The most we’ve had was 50 attendees back in 2021 and I’d like to see if we can beat it next year.

We are still ironing things out so check back later this year for any announcements regarding the next Bastards’ Reunion.

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