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GySgt Nick Popaditch

  • GySgt Nick Popaditch

    is a combat veteran of the US
    Marine Corps
    He is running for United States
    House of Representatives
    in the state of
    Active Status:

The Combat Veterans For Congress PAC is endorsing a candidate that was previously endorsed in the 2010 mid-term election, he is therefore one of the 55 Combat Veterans For Congress who have been endorsed over the last three years.  He is a fiscally conservative candidate who will work to rein in the out of control spending by the Obama Administration.   GySgt Nick Popaditch, USMC (Ret) ; GySgt Popaditch resides in Chula Vista, CA, is a 16 year veteran of the US Marine Corps, and is running in the redistricted 53rd Congressional District of California against the very liberal Representative Susan Davis who has served for 5 terms.  She has voted for the flawed Obama Health Care Bill, voted for billions of dollars of bailouts, has repeatedly voted to raise taxes, supported the out of control spending by the Obama Administration, and is pushing for the second $500 billion Obama Tarp proposal.  Nick Popaditch was born on July 2, 1967 in East Chicago, Indiana and was raised in Terre Haute where the family moved in the late ‘70’s; he graduated from North Terre Haute High School in June of 1985.  From September 2007 to May 2011 Nick matriculated at San Diego City College, then transferred to San Diego State University where he graduated magna cum laude, receiving a BA in Education (Social Science) in May of 2011.  He has enrolled in the Master’s Degree Program in Education at Azusa Pacific University, and starts the Master’s Program in February 2012.  

Following graduation from high school, at age 18, Nick enlisted in the US Marine Corps on January 3, 1986 at MEPS, Indianapolis, Indiana and reported to MCRD, San Diego on May 6, 1986 for recruit training, upon completing training on July 25, 1986, Private First Class Popaditch was designated a tank crewman reporting for M60A1 Tank School at Fort Knox, Kentucky. Following completion of training, he was promoted to the rank of Lance Corporal in December 1986, and received orders to the 1st Tank Battalion, Camp Pendleton, CA.  The Battalion headed overseas, and for the next 3 years his unit rotated between Okinawa, South Korea, mainland Japan, and Camp Pendleton.  In 1987, he was promoted to Corporal and became a Tank Commander.  After Saddam Hussein’s invasion of Kuwait, in August 1990, during Operation Desert Shield, Cpl Popaditch’s B Company that had been attached to the 1st Battalion was transferred to the 3rd Battalion/9th Marine Regiment to defend the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia as an element of Task Force Papa Bear.  He was promoted to Sergeant and commanded a tank that was retrofitted with a mine plow for the clearing of minefields.  From January 1991 to April 1991, during Operation Desert Storm Sgt Popaditch commanding a main battle tank, participated in the clearing of 2 minefields, and was involved in the subsequent attack through the heart of the Iraqi Army’s defense. Historic in both its scope and effectiveness, the Marines routed the 4th largest army in the world from Kuwait in less than 100 hours. Upon returning to the US, Sgt. Popaditch was assigned as an instructor at the Tank Commander School in Camp Pendleton.  Nick married April and began a family.  Following 6 years of honorable faithful service, on May 5, 1992, Sgt Popaditch received an Honorable Discharge from the US Marine Corps, in order to try his hand at a civilian life.  After 4 years of civilian employment, Nick found he still missed the US Marine Corps, reenlisted on September 15, 1995 with the rank of Lance Corporal, and reported to M1A1 Tank School at Fort Knox, KY. Nick was assigned to 29 Palms where in 1996 he was promoted to corporal; Cpl Popaditch was soon a Tank Commander again, this time on an M1A1 Main Battle Tank. In 1997 he was promoted to Sergeant.   He attended Master Gunner School at Fort Knox, KY.  

In December 1998, Sgt Popaditch sought and was granted orders to Marine Corps Drill Instructor School; he was an honor graduate of the school, and in 2000 he was promoted to Staff Sergeant.  As a Senior Drill Instructor SSgt Popaditch was awarded the Navy/Marine Corps Commendation Medal, the Dan Daly Award, and the Moral Leadership Award for Outstanding service as a Drill Instructor.  Following the attacks on the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001, SSgt Popaditch requested orders back to 1st Tank Battalion.  He was assigned as a Tank Commander and 2nd Platoon Sergeant in B Company, then deployed to the Middle East in command of a tank in the initial invasion of Iraq and the final drive to Baghdad; he registered 5 tank kills and 3 APC kills. He distinguished himself in numerous offensive operations against enemy forces, was decorated for valor on the battlefield, and was the subject of a historic photo taken in Baghdad at the fall of Saddam Hussein’s regime.  For his second Combat tour, SSgt Popaditch was awarded the Navy/Marine Corps Achievement Medal with Combat “V”, the Combat Action Ribbon Gold Star in lieu of second award, and many other medals for his honorable and patriotic service.  SSgt Popaditch’s unit remained in Baghdad; he was a firsthand witness to the demise of a dictator and the rise of freedom. 

The Iraqi people and their fight for democracy inspired Popaditch, and following his return stateside to 29 Palms, he volunteered to return to Iraq.  He was transferred to C Company, assigned as a Tank Commander, 1st Platoon Sergeant, was promoted to Gunnery Sergeant, and upon arrival to Kuwait, Gunnery Sergeant Popaditch was selected as the security Platoon Sergeant for the Battalion's move from Kuwait to the city of Fallujah.  The outlaw city became the epicenter of the emerging Iraqi nation’s fight for freedom. The murder and subsequent desecration of 4 American contractors ignited the 1stbattle for Fallujah, Operation Vigilant Resolve. GySgt Popaditch led the attack to breach the city in the Jolan District, the most intense fighting of the battle, a highly successful combined arms attack that decimated enemy defenses in the sector.  For his actions against enemy forces on his 3rd tour of combat, and for valor on the battlefield, Gunnery Sergeant Nick Popaditch was awarded the Silver Star. On April 7, 2004, always the tip of the spear, around midday, GySgt Popaditch was leading the attack, and during an intense exchange of firepower, Nick “Gunny Pop” Popaditch was struck in the head by a rocket-propelled grenade, was blinded, deafened and riddled with shrapnel by the blast.  Gunny Pop was still conscious, but rapidly bleeding to death; despite their wounds, his tank crew’s valiant and selfless actions, along with corpsman in the field protected and saved GySgt Popaditch’s life that day. Skilled surgeons in Fallujah saved his remaining eye, and in late April 2004, a Navy surgeon at Balboa Naval Hospital restored 8% of vision to GySgt Popaditch’s remaining eye. The vision loss was so severe that Gunnery Sergeant Popaditch was forced into medical retirement, was awarded the Purple Heart Medal for wounds sustained in combat, and received an Honorable Discharge from the US Marine Corps for 16 years of arduous and faithful service to the Republic.  GySgt Popaditch was sent to the VA Hospital in Palo Alto, California for blind rehabilitation, and was instructed to utilize his remaining eye site to learn to read and write again, and to learn other mobility skills in order to equip himself to go thru life with severely damaged eyesight. In addition to the Silver Star and Purple Heart Medals, GySgt Popaditch has been awarded the Navy Marine Corps Commendation Medal, the Navy Marine Corps Achievement Medal with Combat “V”, the Combat Action Ribbon (second award), Kuwait Liberation Medal (Saudi), Kuwait Liberation Medal (Kuwait), and numerous other campaign and service medals.

GySgt Popaditch wrote his memoir “Once A Marine”, published by Savas Beatie, LLC, in September 2008.  The book was the 2009 Military Writer’s Book of The Year. It was also added to the Marine Corps Professional Reading List for 3 years in a row and currently is on the SgtMaj of the Marine Corps Recommended Reading List. GySgt Popaditch’s book is considered by many to be a leadership manual, a must read for leaders both in and out of the military.  Nick completed his second book, “The Ultimate Recruit Training Guidebook”, to be published by Savas Beatie, LLC, in February 2012.  GySgt Popaditch is a highly sought speaker across the nation, and speaks to multiple law enforcement agencies, schools, corporations, and churches.  He serves his community as a Mentor/Instructor at the Midwest Marines Focus Program, is a member of the San Diego Nice Guys Organization, The American Legion, the VFW, the Fleet Reserve Association, San Diego’s Bulldog Detachment of the Marine Corps League, the West Coast Drill Instructor’s Association, the Purple Heart Advisory Board for “Freedom is Not Free” Military non-profit organization, was on La Jolla VA Hospital Patient Steering Committee (2009 & 2010), and is a member of the First Christian Church in Chula Vista.  He has been married to his wife, April, for 21 years and they have two grown sons; Richard and Nicholas.  He was the GOP nominee for Congress in 2010 for California’s 51st District and was endorsed by Gov Mike Huckabee, Congressman Duncan L. Hunter (Ret), Cong Duncan D. Hunter (Capt-USMCR) (R-CA-52), Congressman Tom Price (R-GA-6), the Combat Veterans For Congress PAC, the Iraq Veterans For Congress, the iCaucus, and Can Do Conservatives.  

If you review GySgt Popaditch’s statements on his Web site, you would be pleased with his views on limited government, secure borders, and so much more; they agree with the Combat Veterans For Congress Mission Statement.  Kindly review the below listed article in National Geographic entitled “Inside the Iraq War” by clicking on the link, and view the video on the link of GySgt Popaditch.  We look forward to working with GySgt Popaditch and are pleased that a Combat Veteran For Congress of his caliber is running for the US House of Representatives.  If you have friends, associates, or relatives who know voters in California, kindly pass this E-mail on to them, and ask them to support GySgt Nick Popaditch, USMC (Ret) by working in his campaign, providing financial support for his campaign in any amount, and/or by networking with others who would be willing to support his campaign.  We have endorsed another Combat Veteran For Congress that General George Washington would have approved of; he is a Veteran who, at one point in his life, wrote a blank check made payable to “The United States of America” for an amount “up to and including his life.”