Nick Velez is a former Marine. He is opening a sports pub in the LA suburb of Downey, CA. It seems some don’t like the name he chose, nor do they understand why he chose it. The Marine Corps Times has a great article.

Seems Nick was a member of Second Battalion, Fourth Marines. Every Devil Dog knows their nickname. “The Magnificent Bastards”. A nickname bestowed upon them by their Battalion Commander during the fierce fighting around Leatherneck Square in Vietnam in 1966.

At least one City Councilman gets it:

He will be opening it,” said City Councilman Mario Guerra, who supports Bastards.

Guerra, the father of a former Marine, heard that some locals plan to picket Bastards. One woman asked what she should tell her young son the name “Bastards” means.

Guerra said to tell her son the story of 2/4 and the Bastard Marines who have fought, died and served in combat for their country.

Semper Fi, Nick. And best of luck with the new venture. I served alongside 2/4 in those hard, bloody days in Ramadi in 2004, when that Battalion paid a heavy price, but put an ass-whipping on the enemy. Below are the words of then-LtCol Paul Kennedy, CO of 2/4 during those months of sharp combat:

Early in the morning we exchanged gunfire with a group of insurgents without significant loss. As morning progressed, the enemy fed more men into the fight and we responded with stronger force. Unfortunately, this led to injuries as our Marines and sailors started clearing the city block by block. The enemy did not run; they fought us like soldiers. And we destroyed the enemy like only Marines can. By the end of the evening the local hospital was so full of their dead and wounded that they ran out of space to put them. Your husbands were awesome all night they stayed at the job of securing the streets and nobody challenged them as the hours wore on. They did not surrender an inch nor did flinch from the next potential threat. Previous to yesterday the terrorist thought that we were soft enough to challenge. As of tonight the message is loud and clear that the Marines will not be beaten.

Magnificent Bastards, all. The name on the sign of Nick Velez’s establishment is fine tribute to them. If you are in Downey, stop in for a frosty mug and some wings.


h/t Al “Hard Justice”




Posted by UltimaRatioReg in Hard Power, Marine Corps, Navy

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  • redc1c4

    i’ll have to drive down from the Valley, but if they’ll take this Cav Trooper’s coin, i’ll be there to make this a Combined Arms Operation.

  • YN2(SW) H. Lucien Gauthier III

    I now have a reason to go to Downey, CA and part with significant sums of money.

  • To be honest if it doesn’t violate any state laws regarding the naming of establishments I don’t see what the problem is. I want to abstract the story and history aside for a moment and look at this from a purely detached view point.

    It’s a BAR for ADULTS focused around SPORTS. We’re really petitioning here? Certainly, the fine folks of LA can find something better to do with their time. When your child asks, “What does bastard mean?” you tell them the truth. The son of two people that aren’t married. This is an insult only to those rooted in a past that’s not applicable today because our minds have expanded along with our constantly evolving culture.

    When children or people seek knowledge it’s how you deliver it that makes it taboo or not.

  • Downey ain’t all that far from my old home berg of Manhattan Beach, and next time I’m there I’ll be pleased to step up and contribute some patronage.

    From a former member of the 1st Marine Brigade
    Semper Fi!


  • Diogenes of NJ

    Marines shouldn’t drink when they’re pregnant.

    – Kyon




    When the Bastards (2/4) blunted the thrust of the NVA 320C Division at the Battle of Dai Do (May ’68), they saved the bacon of the 3rd Mar Div, HQ (Fwd) at Dong HA. Thanks.

  • Downey Local

    It’s a decent little place. Downey is a very conservative city in that regard and that’s why a few people have taken offense. I think it adds a nice change of pace for the area. Their beer selection isn’t too bad either.

  • Carmen

    They fought for my freedom…as far as I’m concerned, they have the right to call this establishment whatever they want! I’ll be visiting them soon.

  • I know this is a little dated, but I served in Vietnam with Hotel 3/12, we were attached to 2/4 the whole 13 months I was in country. When the companies moved, we moved. I have a photo somewhere that has our Hotel Battery 3/12 logo, with the inscription, Hotel Battery, Long Arm of the Magnificent Bastards. Wish I could find it, but it is etched in my mind.