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Marine Corps Rap – One Of The Earlier YouTube Videos

6 January 2013 No Comment By Danny Maddox


Marine Corps Rap Way Back in 2005

In late December 2005 I finally decided to check out a cool up and coming new site that had been getting some tech world love called YouTube. Keep in mind this was before YouTube was venture funded by Sequoia Capital and almost a year before Google acquired them. I think YouTube was still in a building in San Mateo, CA above a pizza place and in all rights, was still a fledgling Silicon Valley start up. Just a mere hatchling and not the full grown Google fed online T-Rex of today.

Most of the videos I watched back then were just videos of people doing stupid things like Jumping on the Wall , Japanese Taxi , or Carrie and the Chicken until I came across an interesting video made by five U.S  Marines while on deployment in Iraq. This one was done fairly well, an edited  home made video version of Run DMC’s “It’s Tricky.”  An odd choice since this old school rap song was topping the charts when most of these guys were still in diapers. Nonetheless, the YouTube video was still entertaining.

Like any other tech geek I figured out a way to rip it to my machine so I could watch it later without having to deal with the buffering issues of the day. A month later I got a new machine, threw the old machine in the closet and that’s where the ripped video would remain unwatched for seven years. Last month I finally decided to thin out my antique computer collection and while cleaning off the hard drives came across the video I ripped way back then.  Watching it again in 2012 I thought to myself  “I wonder if it is still there and what ever happened to these Marines”

Was it Still There?

Unfortunately it was not still there under it’s original posting. I did find that it had been uploaded again in 2007 by the user Stingdar who indicated he did not make the video but simply had reposted it. Living just a few blocks away from YouTube Headquarters and knowing a few people that work there as well patronizing the unofficial morning hangout of YouTube on a daily basis, that being the Starbucks in Bay Hill Shopping Center right around the corner from YT HQ, I thought I would take a long shot and ask around about it.

What I learned was that it was probably taken down due to a copyright complaint. Back then, very much still in the hunt for venture capital YouTube didn’t need any lawsuits or bad press concerning copyright issues so they aggressively killed any video with a complaint. A few infringing videos remained in the absence of a complaint and are still there today. In 2007 after the Google acquisition , YouTube developed their current method of dealing with copyright by allowing the owners to earn revenue or to remove it. That’s more than likely the reason Stingdar’s version remains five plus years later as you can see the song is being peddled by iTunes via the video .

Who Are These Marines and Where Are They Today?

Watching the video it isn’t clear at all where they were deployed, what unit they were in or even very much about who they were other than some rank and last name credits at the end mixed in with some self styled nick names.

Searching Google I didn’t get any solid leads till I searched for “SSGT Rangel Count of Al Qaim” and I found this, an unrelated Marine Corps Article about these same five Marines deployed in a very hostile forward position at Camp Al Qaim with Marine Aviation Logistics Squadron 26. This really adds an interesting perspective on this video as Al Qaim was the scene of some intense fighting around this time period with The Battle of Al Qaim.

The five Marines in the video are Staff Sgt. Danny Rangel of Placentia, California, Cpl. Charles Smith of Drayden, Maryland, Lance Cpl. Jessie Fielder from Pell City, Alabama, Lance Cpl. Adam P. Wivell from Emmetsburg, Maryland and Lance Cpl. Adam M. Stinley of Boyertown, Pennsylvania.

Google says they all they all probably made it back and most of them are doing well.  Adam Wivell seems to have gone to OCS and is now a Marine Officer, Jessie Fielder apparently just made SSgt (E-6) , Danny Rangel appears to have left the Marines in 2009 after 11 years and Adam Stinley ran afoul with Pennsylvania law sometime in 2006 and did time. Charles Smith is an unknown but I hope he’s ok.

Check out this cool video and leave a comment.




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