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© Copyright Michael Dan Kellum 2010
PFC / 1st Lieutenant USMCR 1967-71
Michael Dan Kellum was born and raised in Longview, Texas where he presently  resides with his wife, Karen. He graduated from Longview High School in 1966 and  was active in sports--football, track and bowling. He also played baseball in the  summer months. After high school, he attended the University of Houston in Houston,  Texas for a year. With the Vietnam War in full swing, he dropped out of college to join the United  States Marine Corps in October 1967 as an enlisted man. He completed boot camp at  Marine Corps Recruit Depot San Diego, California in December 1967 and Infantry  Training Regiment at Camp Pendleton in February 1968. After roughly five months marking time as a troop handler training Marines and then  an office clerk at Camp San Onofre on the Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton military reservation in California, he was chosen to attend Officer Candidate School at  Quantico, Virginia as part of the Enlisted Commissioning Program. Kellum was  commissioned a second lieutenant in the U.S. Marine Corps in August 1968. After completing advanced officer training at The Basic School in Charlie Co.-'69 at  Camp Barrett on the Marine Corps Base Quantico, Virginia military reservation, his first  duty station was with Charlie Co., 1st Battalion, 6th Marine Regiment at Camp Lejeune,  North Carolina. From April to October 1969, he alternated  training troops and guarding the fence line at U.S. Naval Base Guantanamo Bay, Cuba as the Executive Officer of  Golf Co, 2nd Battalion, 8th Marine Regiment. Approximately four months after returning to Camp Lejeune in October 1969, 1stLt. Kellum received orders for Vietnam in January 1970. He was assigned to Headquarters & Services Co., 2nd Battalion, 26th Marine  Regiment at the Rockcrusher in South Vietnam. When 2/26 rotated stateside, he was sent to Echo Co., 2nd  Battalion, 1st Marine Regiment south of Da Nang, South Vietnam in March 1970 for the remainder of his Vietnam  tour. 2/1 operated out of Camp Lauer which was within the evening shadow cast by majestic Marble Mountain  and next to the South China Sea. At Echo, 2/1 Kellum was a platoon commander in the bush, Executive Officer and briefly near the end of his  tour the Commanding Officer during a successful heliborne operation south of Hill 55.  In June 1971 after 3½ years in the Marines and all but USMC advisors left in Vietnam  after the drawdown of U.S. troops, he elected to leave the Marine Corps and return to  college.      He attended Stephen F. Austin State University in Nacogdoches, Texas and  received his BA degree in communications with an emphasis in journalism and a  secondary major in English in 1974. His senior year, he was the editor of the student  newspaper, The Pine Log. He returned to work on his masters degree in  communications 1974-75 and helped put together the SFASU's Alumni Association's  Sawdust publication. At the end of 1975 spring semester, he decided to put his skills to  the test as a full-time newspaperman rather than complete the last 6 hours and a  thesis to attain his masters.      Over the years he has worked as a journalist at small East Texas newspapers:  Longview Morning JournalJacksonville Daily Progress, The (Rusk) Cherokeean and (Atlanta) Citizens Journal. At the latter two publications he was a managing editor  and associate publisher, respectively. He has also done limited string work for The  Dallas Morning News.       Kellum is presently a self-employed contractor and an aspiring writer. Book I and II,    American Heroes: Grunts, Pilots & "Docs" are his first nonfiction books to be  published. He is also working on a fiction novel titled Cherokee Springs Chronicles   about a former Vietnam veteran who becomes the editor of a weekly newspaper in the  fictional town of Cherokee Springs, Texas. Another project involves being the historian  of the 2nd Battalion, 1st Marine Regiment and writing a history of 2nd Battalion, 1st  Marine Regiment during the Vietnam War years, 1965-71.