Melvin Antonio Douglas – USMC GySgt, Combat Veteran of Grenada and Beirut, 20 Year Service Career, Blog of Shame


01/09/2018 by militaryphonies

“My motto in life is treat others as you want to be treated!” – Melvin A. Douglas

Douglas - Dossier


Melvin Antonio Douglas, who also goes by the name Melvin Curry Douglas,  claims that he was a Gunnery Sergeant (GySgt / E-7) that served for 20 yrs in the Marine Corps.

douglas - sdi gysgt

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Douglas was confirmed to be a Drill Instructor at Parris Island South Carolina, so perhaps the “SDI GySgt” (Senior Drill Instructor – GySgt) was an title bestowed upon him if in a senior billet in charge of a platoon?

This photo posted of Douglas in January of 1994 shows his rank as a SSgt (E-6).

douglas - drill instructor_small
He makes the claim of GySgt several times on various Facebook profiles.

douglass - gysgt

NOTE: Facebook often substitutes ‘Marine Corps Recruiting’ for a career in the ‘U.S. Marine Corps’. This does not represent a claim by the individual.


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Douglas also claims that he had a 20 year career from 1982 – 2002.

douglas - retirement in 2002

This service claim of 07 July 1982 to 07 July 2002, as well as the claim of GySgt, is consistent across several Facebook profiles that Douglas has.

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In this post on Google+, Douglas talks about a medical retirement in 1994 which contradicts his claims of retiring in 2002 after 20 years of active duty.

douglas - med ret


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In December 2015, Melvin Douglas posted and listed all of the places that he fought in. Among them are Panama, Grenada, Honduras, Beirut, Kosovo and in The Gulf War.

douglas - combat

In this post Douglas also makes a claim of being in six (6) combat zones, presumably the same ones listed above.

douglas - 6 combat zones

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Douglas reinforces his time in Beirut with posted photos and comments.

douglas - patrol in beirut

douglas - beirut buddies2

douglas-beirut memorial comment

Although there’s a heavy implication of military service in Beirut, it should be noted that the use of the pronouns ‘our’ and ‘we’ in the photo comments above could mean ‘Marines’ in general or ‘1st Battalion 8th Marines’.  Douglas was a member of both. 

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Melvin Douglas has been around the community of Beirut Veterans and family member next-of-kin for years.  When he made disparaging comments to a woman that had lost her father in Beirut Lebanon in 1983, several veterans started to raise questions about his claims of being a Beirut veteran. Primarily because Douglas’ behavior struck them as odd since treating the next-of-kin very respectfully is kind of an unwritten rule in this community.

Some even question his claim of being a U.S. Marine Corps Drill Instructor based, in their view, on questionable rants on Douglas’ Facebook page. They had a difficult time believing that an ex-drill instructor would speak as he does.

More about this in the SUMMARY & DISCUSSION section below entitled “THE UGLY”.

The point is, since suspicions were raised Melvin Douglas’ official military records were ordered.

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douglas - summary

An earlier, incomplete FOIA result had a summary page that showed the correct date of entry as 07 July 1982. It also reinforced the rank of Staff Sergeant.

douglas - combat history

douglas - awards

douglas - ssdr

douglas - assignments

Douglas has one CAR listed for Desert Storm in the USMC CAR/HSM database and no Humanitarian Service Medal.  This database has been known not to be accurate or all inclusive, so it is just one reference tool.  However, if it lists one conflict why would it not list other conflicts in which he claimed he was in combat?  Again, nothing can be concluded from these results due to the inconsistent nature of this database.


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NPRC FOIA dod-mdc

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The discussion about Douglas’ claims are divided into distinct areas labeled “THE GOOD, THE BAD AND THE UGLY”.

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Douglas accomplished quite a bit during his military career in the Marine Corps. He fought in Desert Storm and became a Drill Instructor. It is obvious from his Facebook posts that he was passionate about the Marine Corps and no doubt took pride in his efforts to train Marines.

He also has a Combat Action Ribbon (CAR) for Desert Storm.

These are accomplishments that many can only hope to achieve.

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Several claims that Douglas has made are not supported by his official military records.

His records state that he got out as a SSgt (E-6) vs. his numerous claims of a GySgt (E-7). Recall the photo of him as a Drill Instructor in January of 1994. It shows him at the rank of SSgt.  He got out in August of 1994, so it is conceivable that he attained the next highest rank but there is such a tight window for that to happen.

He appears to have been medically retired or some other retirement in 1994. In other words, he was not in the Marine Corps until 2002 as he claimed, which would have been a regular retirement. Stated another way – he was in for 12 years vs. the 20 years that he claimed. 

We will leave it to others to form an opinion about the “six combat zones”. He could have been on several floats that established him as off shore in territorial waters, but the only conflict listed in his records is Desert Shield/Desert Storm.

What is clear is that his records do not support his claim of being in Grenada or Beirut.  He was with BLT 1/6 at the time and they did not participate in either.  The 31st MAU was offshore of Beirut briefly and had 3/3 on board, but they left the area when needed elsewhere. Douglas was with 3rd MARDIV (Okinawa) at the time so conceivably could have been a member of BLT 3/3. If he was and the ship was off shore, then he would be a Beirut veteran.

On page 9 of the FOIA results, it shows that Douglas was awarded a Sea Service Deployment Ribbon (SSDR) on 19 Nov 1983. He was with 3rd MARDIV at the time so this award could not be related to BLT 1/8. BLT 1/8 members received a SSDR for ending their mission to Beirut around this same date.

Douglas claims he was with BLT 1/8, but he joined 1/8 much later in June 1984. BLT 1/8 and BLT 3/3 were not part of the Grenada invasion on 25 Oct 1983, so by claiming he was in Grenada it undermines his Beirut claim since his records do not support that.

We suspect that the claim of being in six combat zones were a result of ships that he deployed on perhaps entered the territorial waters of regional skirmishes. Due to the billets that he held at the time (i.e. Marine Detachment on USS Missouri, etc.), Douglas would not be in a position to go ashore and participate in ground operations.

This is parsing words – having “six combat zones under your belt” and being in combat are two different things but it is implied they are one and the same. He did state his claim emphatically when he spoke of “my days as a killer on the battlefields of Panama, Grenada, Honduras, Beirut, Kosovo, and The Gulf War“, so there is little room for doubt about what Douglas was claiming.

To wrap this up – Douglas’ military records do not support a claim of him being in combat in Grenada or Beirut.  This casts some doubt that he was a Beirut veteran but the possibility exists that his ship was in territorial waters briefly, which would qualify. The fact remains that he was not a combat veteran of either Beirut or Grenada, according to his records.

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As mentioned, Douglas has been around the community of Beirut veterans and family next-of-kin for years.  He obviously feels a connection, having claimed to have lost many brothers from boot camp in the bombing of the Marine Barracks in Beirut on 23 OCT 1983.  BLT 1/8 sustained heavy casualties on this day.

When Douglas got in a disagreement with a daughter of a Marine killed in that bombing, he unleased a rant that raised some eyebrows. A rant with included calling the daughter’s father a “faggot assed dead daddy”.

douglas - beirut rant

This prompted several Beirut veterans to question Douglas’ status as a veteran of Beirut. This is because they doubted that someone would be insensitive to a Gold Star Family member in this way.

There was also a review of Melvin Douglas’ Facebook postings. They seemed to paint a picture of an angry man that speaks a lot about race.

douglas - racist rant

Individuals are certainly entitled to their outlook on life. Social and political viewpoints are beyond the scope and intent of the mission at Military Phony. However, in this case the veterans began to question some of the comments coming from a former Drill Instructor in that he would shape the attitudes of men and women aspiring to become Marines. There was some doubt cast upon the claim of Drill Instructor for these reasons. As it turns out, Douglas was indeed a Drill Instructor, but the opinions that he puts forth stuck many as surprising and are stated so openly in a public forum.

Apparently, even as a civilian Douglas is still providing instruction to young Marines in an effort to shape and influence them.

douglas - mall

What would the Marines that had Douglas as their Drill Instructor think now?  Some may ask the question – whatever happened to SSgt Douglas?  Well, they can see all they want on Facebook.

douglas - white people

Doesn’t the Marine Corps stress that Marines are all green?  Maybe this anger is a result of PTSD, or maybe Douglas was always angry?  Who knows?

As his military records show, Douglas’ time as a Drill Instructor was extremely short.  Whether there were issues or whether his short time as a DI was related to his medical condition, he was discharged in August of 1994.

Douglas’ personal philosophies are ironic as you can see from his own words.

douglas - treat others as you want to be treated

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Douglas could have kept under the radar had he not made disparaging comments to a daughter of a Marine KIA in Beirut. We don’t know the argument that took place before he made the comments but we cannot imagine a scenario where someone deserved to be the blunt of his remarks. He needs to make things right.

A Marine with an exemplary record such as he does has every right to be proud of his accomplishments. However, his claims do not match his official military records.

Perhaps the greatest irony of all comes from one of Douglas’ own postings…

douglas-aint phony

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douglas - d



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Facebook #1:

Facebook #2:

Facebook #3: ( pic )


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One thought on “Melvin Antonio Douglas – USMC GySgt, Combat Veteran of Grenada and Beirut, 20 Year Service Career, Blog of Shame

  1. […] partners at Military Phonies send us their work on this fellow Melvin Curry Douglas who claims to be 20-year-veteran of the US […]

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