Ek Commando Knives

MKII Stiletto (Click to enlarge)

Click to enlarge.

"If you can read this,
thank a teacher.
If you are reading this in English,
thank a veteran."

MSOB - Marine Special
Operations Battalion

MSOAG - Marine Special
Operations Advisor Group

MSOS - Marine Special
Operations School

MSOSG - Marine Special
Operations Support Group

World War II, Korea, Vietnam, Gulf War, Iraq War

Marine Corps Knives

U.S. Marines are particularly well-known and respected worldwide for their close-combat fighting skills.

One reason for this is the Corps' Marine Corps Martial Arts Program, MCMAP, headquartered at their Martial Arts Center of Excellence (MACE) at Quantico MCB, Va. (located near The Basic School, west of I-95). Known as Raider Hall, here visitors can tour the U.S. Marine Raider Museum, co-founded by Ek's president, Bob Buerlein, and a former president of the U.S. Marine Raider Association, R.G. Rosenquist.

The U.S. Maine Raiders, the Corps' first elite force unit within an elite force, were known for their successful close-combat fighting skills in the dense jungles of the Central and South Pacific. Many of these close-combat fighting techniques, as well as the training to develop the mental edge over the enemy, were taught by Raider Colonel Anthony "Cold Steel" Walker. Today's Marines are taught this spirit and the skills along the lines of the Raiders.

One of the key Marines, now a Colonel, in the history of MCMAP, was a close friend, student and disciple of Colonel "Cold Steel" Walker, and he is a long-term user of Ek Commando Knives. Of these he says:

Many of my Marines possess confidence due to wearing and using
your spectacular blades...I teach knife fighting to a lot of Marines.
The Ek Knife is a big part of my ethos. I highly encourage my
Marines to purchase them. Everything about them is right. You are
making the most functional, capable, and well-made knife in the world
today. Ek has that little something extra, that little bit of history attached.

Just having it strapped to my side on every patrol I go on brings
my readiness to a higher level. I command a lot of young Marines
over here - and they ask me what kind of knife they should get. I
tell them...if they are serious, they should consider an Ek. I let them
hold mine - and they understand. I will carry them for as long as I
am a Marine (just over 33 years). Your design, your craftsmanship, and your attitude is everything that makes our country great - and I consider Ek 'the arms-carrying professional's blade'.

Marines are buying Ek knives for serious duty in combat. Indeed, a Marine combat veteran (an Ek owner for 40 years) recently told us, "I am going to call the President and tell him all of our troops going to the desert should have an Ek - they're the best out there!"

Here are a few more unsolicited testimonials from Marines:

  • "I've had an Ek for some time, and every time I pull it out of the sheath people say, 'Where did you get THAT?' " -- Recon Marine Major
  • "My Model 4 is going to Iraq with a Marine I know. I told him that an Ek saved my uncle's life in Nam and a buddy's life in Afghanistan. I can tell another Marine's life will be safer now that he knows he has an Ek." -- D.F.
  • "I believe my Ek No. 5 Bowie would cut a Ka-Bar in half! It's a great knife!"-- R.B., California
  • "Ek has one thing the others don't offer and that is a solid tradition and history with the military going back many years. My Ek has always been a great knife for all my needs, including opening ammo crates and a great many uses a knife wasn't designed for. I've used it in Grenada, Somalia, Sudan and Afghanistan on three different deployments (the first time when the Russians were there). The hilt is big enough for a MAN's hand - most others are too small. Everyone who sees my Ek knife goes bananas over it. My father had one in Korea. When Dad gave his Ek to my brother, my brother threw his Gerber MkII in the woods!" -- R.K.B. "Magician 25", U.S.M.C.
  • "I just received my Marine Raider Stiletto. What a great knife, thank you. I served in the Marine Corps for six years and have been a police officer in Fla. for seventeen. I've owned a few knives in that time including many Randalls. Your knives are second to none. Thanks again for a great knife. Semper Fi." -- E.F., Florida
  • "I come from a long line of military family members, and they all recommended your knives because of their superior quality. Take it from them -- they bet their lives on your knives! My father used his knife in Iraq as a U.S. Marine and he would forbid me from buying any other knife before I entered the service. I have heard nothing but praise for your company...Thanks very much, and please continue the great work. Your dedication to the U.S. Military is testament to the integrity of your company, and I really respect what it is that you do." -- Marty T.

In addition, Marines looking for special pieces to present to incoming and outgoing Marines frequently contact Ek and order our Marine Corps knives, usually in the Walnut Display Case, which has a glass lid and wall-mounting provisions and is lined in Marine Corps Scarlet. There's something "right" about presenting a professional warrior with a professional warrior's knife.

Special "U.S.M.C." Scroll Etching on Blades

The special "U.S.M.C." scroll etching pattern, as first used in WWII by the U.S. Marine Raiders (on the Stiletto), is available for etching on the blades of all Ek knives. Just so specify when you order. The Marine Corps Officer's Sword and NCO's Sword are etched on the blade with that proud service branch's name, now your fighting knife can be, too.

Personalized/Presentation Inscriptions

Personalized and presentation inscriptions can be etched on your knife blade. This can include:

  • Your name
  • USMC serial number
  • Unit
  • Personal motto
  • Presented to, etc.
  • Anniversary/USMC service dates

We've even etched the names of girlfriends on knife blades for Marines.

Presentation/Display Case

For special presentations, or to hang your knife on the wall of your Marine Room, a Walnut Display Case is available. This is a quality piece made in the U.S.A. of American Walnut with a locking glass lid, a fitted-velvet lining and wall-mount provisions. This is $59, and there is no extra charge for shipping it when ordered with a knife.

The Marine Corps Knives

The Marine Raider/MCMAP Knife

To symbolize the close bond between the WWII U.S. Marine Raiders and the fighting Marines of MCMAP, Ek Commando Knife Co. worked with these two organizations and developed with them the Marine Raider/MCMAP Knife.

Officially authorized by the U.S. Marine Raider Association, the Marine Raider/MCMAP Knife keeps alive the spiritual bond between the WWII Raider Marines and the MCMAP-trained U.S. Marines of today. Four times a year, MCMAP presents one of these knives to an outstanding Black Belt Instructor/Trainer in each graduating class. This is the Dunham-Wetherbee Award (Corporal Jason Dunham, USMC, was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor by President George W. Bush in 2007; Dunham threw his body on a live enemy grenade to save his buddies around him). Click here to read the newspaper article honoring Jason Dunham.

Inspired by the Marine Raider Stiletto of World War II fame, the Marine Raider/MCMAP Knife's business end is a similar, double-edge, razor-sharp blade - of the highest quality, high carbon, surgical, stainless steel. The sturdy crossguard is solid brass. The grip is wrapped with military-spec parachute cord, inspired by the traditional, wrapped grip of the sword of the ancient Samurai warrior, an icon of the martial arts. The cord wrapping and sheath are black, the traditional color of the highest order, or "belt" of fighting skill, the Black Belt.


Left: The blade shoulder (show side) carries the symbol and motto of the Marine Corps Martial Arts Program.

The blade shoulder (reverse) portrays the famous "Death's Head" symbol of the Marine Raiders (with the five stars of the Southern Cross), with the name of the knife and the name of the official maker.

The Marine Raider Stiletto MkII™

The spiritual legacy and design of the WWII Marine Raider Stiletto is updated in this knife for today's combat with the best materials and the strongest design (full tang) by Ek, battle-proven in six wars since 1941.

As with the original, the "USMC" scroll is etched on blade, and the grip is that unmistakable "Coke-bottle" shape that rests so comfortably in the hand. Battle-worthy, the full tang design gives maximum strength. The first of these knives was presented by the U.S. Marine Raider Association to Raider Hall at Quantico MCB, where it is on permanent display. Shortly thereafter, the U.S. Marine Raider Association presented one to MARSOC (Marine Special Operations Command), the modern-day counterpart of the Raiders, and it, too, is on permanent display at their Headquarters at Camp Lejeune, N.C.

Each year the CG of MARSOC presents four Ek Marine Raider Stiletto MkII's to his four outstanding Marines of MARSOC, in a special formal ceremony there at Camp Lejeune.

USMC Ek Desert Patrol - USMC DP3, shown with "USMC" scroll etched on blade. Full tang. High Carbon Stainless Steel -- razor sharp. Solid brass crossguard. This "USMC" scroll, and others, are available as special order on all Ek knives.

Ek Knives

Ek Marine Recon Commemorative

This is from, and within, the Limited Edition of 2500 knives, as first issued as collectibles in 1986. We just found 30 of the finished blades which we are hilting up with our Black Micarta grips. The blade is mirror polished and etched, and the etching is selectively plated with 24-Karat Gold. Etching includes: Recon Marine firing M-16; Recon rubber boat scene; banners with Recon name; scuba device; jump wings.

The knife is priced at only $299. Can also order Ek Deluxe Display Case for $59, and/or with Ek sheath for $39.

Ek Knives

An American Walnut Display Case is available to display your Ek Commando Knives in your office or personal War Room. This is used in USMC presentations of the Marine Raider/MCMAP Knife at MACE (the Martial Arts Center of Excellence) at Raider Hall MCB Quantico and at MARSOC HQ at MCBCamp Lejeune. The locking glass lid protects your knife from dust and unauthorized handling. May be displayed flat or upright; wall-mount provisions. Fitted liner. A quality, made-in-U.S.A piece. Size 18"x7"x2-1/4".

Ek Marine Corps Knives In The Press

2008 MARSOC Anniversary Award Ceremonies

Ek Marine Raider Stiletto MkII's Awarded to Top Marines on 27 Feb 09 at MARSOC HQ, Camp Lejeune.

Commander of MARSOC, MajGen Mastin M. Robeson presents the Commander's Award of Excellent, a cased Ek Commando Knife, to SSgt James C. Sanders (MSOAG).

MajGen Robeson presents the Support Marine of the Year Award to GySgt Douglas J. Ouderkirk (MSO5).

SSgt Nestor S. DeLaTerre (MSOS) receives from MajGen Robeson the Instructor of the Year award.

(Not present: GySgt Dacken W. Albertson (1st MSOB) won the Operator of the Year award.)


MCMAP Instructor/Trainer (IT) Class 3-08 -- one of the two French IT's receives the Ek Marine Raider/MCMAP Knife Dunham-Weatherbee Award at Quantico MCB.

Ek Marine Raider/MCMAP Knife Dunham-Weatherbee Award

Honorary Raider Jim Ratliff (L) set a record for the all-time highest bid at the 2008 Raider Reunion Auction, taking first place in active bidding for this special Marine Raider/MCMAP Knife from Ek Commando Knife Co., LtCol Joe Shusko, USMC (Ret.), head of the Marine Corps Martial Arts Program, is beside him.


Ek Marine Raider Stiletto MkII's are presented each year by Marine Special Operations Command to their four top Marines. Here, the Commanding General of MARSOC, MajGen Dennis J. Hejlik, presents the MARSOC Outstanding Instructor of the Year Award to GySgt James Stivers (right), Instructor and Operator.

Similar Ek knives are also presented each year to the Outstanding Support Marine of the Year, CWO Ronald Allen (above left); Commandant's Award for Excellence, MSgt David Buehler (above right); and Operator of the Year. The latter, for the year 2007, was awarded posthumously to HM2 Luke ("Doc") Milam (KIA 25 Sep 07, Afghanistan) at his funeral, to his father.

In the Raider/Special Operations tradition at MARSOC, when MSgt Bill Mackes retired as Senior Enlisted for Intelligence Company, he was presented with a Marine Raider Stiletto MkII - shown here with presentation by LtCol Michelle Trusso, CO of MARSOC Intelligence Company. MSgt Mackes says, "It is proudly displayed as the centerpiece on my wall and I will always cherish it."

At The National Museum of the Marine Corps Grand Opening...

Ek President, Bob Buerlein (a director of the Marine Corps Heritage Foundation, which built the Museum), greets friend, Raider Roy Batterton, who was one of the 13 Marine Raiders who trained at the British Commando Training Centre in 1942 in Achnacarry, Scotland, to return to train the Raiders. He and the other Raiders who trained there liked the Commandos' F-S Fighting knife, which became the inspiration for the Marine Raider Stiletto.

(Right) Wyndham Buerlein, a former Amtrac Platoon Commander, inspects the AAV (Amphibian Assault Vehicle) exhibit/diorama. Note the extra EAAK (Enhance Applique Armor Kit) armor. The manikins are utterly realistic -- made from castings of live Marines!

(Left) U.S. Marine Raider Association officers Ken O'Donnell (L), First Vice President, and Mel Heckt, Prior President, inspect the Raider exhibit.

The National Museum of the Marine Corps is located at Quantico MCB and is open every day except Christmas; no charge for admission. A must see!

And Ek is There at the Activation Ceremony of the New Marine Corps Special Operations Command (MARSOC)

MajGen Dennis J. Hejlik receives an Ek Marine Raider Stiletto MkII from the U.S. Marine Raider Association at the Activation Ceremony on 24 Feb 06 of the new Marine Corps Special Operations Command (MARSOC) at Camp Lejeune. Raiders making the presentation are (L to R) Raider Assn. 1st V.P. Ken O'Donnell (1st Bn), Assn. Pres. Harold Berg (1st Bn), and Assn. Prior Pres. Chuck Meacham (3rd Bn) and Clarence Mobley (1st Bn). The Raiders are the spiritual forefathers of MARSOC, and the General told them, "Thank you especially for the Raider Commando Fighting Knife. It will always stay with the MARSOC Hqtrs." He also told the Raiders, "The four of you at the Activation Ceremony was the highlight of the event." Gung Ho!

Raider George MacRae (3K) (at left) holds the Ek Marine Raider/MCMAP Knife at the 2007 Raider Reunion as Bob Buerlein (of Ek) explains the details of this knife, which was subsequently auctioned to the Raiders with all of the proceeds going to the U.S. Marine Raider Association.

Harold Berg (right), formerly of Edson's Raiders and president of the Raider Association, discusses the Marine Raider Stiletto Mk II with Bob Buerlein, of Ek.

Raider George MacRae (3K) at right and Bob Buerlein (of Ek) inspect Raider knives on display at the Command Museum at San Diego Recruit Depot. Well worth a visit!

The Marine Raider/MCMAP Knife (in Ek's Walnut Display Case) is the Dunham-Wetherbee Award (named after two deceased, valorous U.S. Marines), here presented to MAIT (Martial Arts Instructor/Trainer) Black Belt Course graduate, Sgt Jason Zeise. The U.S. Marine Corps presents four of these awards per year at MACE (the Martial Arts Center of Excellence) at Raider Hall, MCB Quantico. Semper Fi!

LtCol Joe Shusko (at right), Director of the Marine Corps' MCMAP program points out features he likes on the new Ek Marine Raider Stiletto MkII. Listening are Ek president (L) Bob Buerlein and Raider George MacRae (center) at the U.S. Marine Raider Reunion in Nashville, Sep. 06. MacRae and Buerlein are Co-Chairmen of the Museum Advisory Committee of the U.S. Marine Raider Association, and Buerlein is a director and secretary of the U.S. Marine Raider Foundation.

Ek's Marine Raider Stiletto MkII presented to LtCol Joe ShuskoEk's Marine Raider Stiletto MkII is presented by U.S. Marine Raider Association President Chuck Meacham (r) to LtCol Joe Shusko, Director of the Marine Corps Martial Arts Program (MCMAP) in the August 2004 dedication of Raider Hall (home of MCMAP) at Quantico MCB. Shusko, in his acceptance, told the Raiders, "We hope you can share with our future warriors your culture, and we hope to continue in your footsteps. This is your home, gentlemen." This is the first MkII Raider Stiletto made, and it is on permanent display in Raider Hall in the U.S. Marine Raider Museum (co-founded by Ek president, Bob Buerlein - Honorary Raider - and Raider R.G. Rosenquist).

Excerpt from the newsletter of the U.S. Marine Raider Association, the "Raider Patch"

WWII Marine Raider
Stiletto Reborn as a
Modern Fighting Knife

By John McCarthy, Editor

Fighting knives and Marine Raiders have always gone together. At a time when line Marines were issued the Ka-Bar, some Raiders ended up with a Marine Raider Stiletto, a Gung Ho knife and a Ka-Bar. Of course, knives were supposed to be turned in when a new one was issued, but Raiders being Raiders often figured a way around that!

Now the Stiletto is back -- in the form of the Marine Raider Stiletto Mk II -- for today's warfighting. It is a collaboration between Raider Rudy Rosenquist and Honorary Raider Bob Buerlein and the Raider Association and Ek Commando Knife Co. As you may recall, Rudy and Bob worked together back in the 1980's, on the three Raider commemorative knives.

Now, their collaboration continues with this knife. Rudy says, "Our original Stiletto was a deadly knife -- but very fragile". Bob has owned Ek Commando Knife Co. (which goes back to 1941) since 1982, and Rudy and Bob looked at the Ek Model M4 which was a razor-sharp double-edged stiletto and modified the hilt to resemble the WWII Raider Stiletto. The result is robust, gratifying and downright deadly! Rudy says, "This isn't just a wall-hanger (although it is beautifully made). This is a fantastic fighting knife!"

Bob says, "Lt. Col. George Bristol, the Marine who envisioned the Marine Corps Martial Arts Program, headquartered at Raider Hall,Quantico, was CO of the 3rd Recon Batallion. When he and his Marines deployed to Iraq about two years ago, the knife he carried was an Ek Model M4 -- the knife that inspired this Stiletto Mk II. I think the Marine Raider Stiletto Mk II is even better than the M4!"

This knife is the spirit and legacy of the WWII original, updated with the best materials and strongest, full-tang design to keep alive the name of the U.S. Marine Raiders.


Marine Raider Museum -- Raider Hall -- Quantico MCB

Here the story is seen and told of the famous World War II Marine Raiders, the first and most famous commando-type outfit ever formed by the U.S. Marine Corps. The Raiders provided fast, hard-hitting assault units designed to inflict surprise strikes. They are the only U.S. military unit in American history authorized to use the Death's-Head Skull as their official symbol. Visitors will see why. Large glass display cases, and a dozen display boards tell the gallant Raider story. You'll see on exhibit the first Japanese flag captured during the war (Lt. Col. Evans F. Carlson's Raiders brought it back from the famous Makin Island Raid of 1942). The Museum features numerous photos of the Raiders in training, in camp and in combat. Also displayed are firearms, tools, equipment, uniforms (Raiders were the first to wear camouflage uniforms in World War II) and many fascinating implements of war. Visitors will also see captured Japanese combat gear. The evolution, training and combat success of this special unit, depicted here, chronicles the Raider story and inspires all who see it.

Museum Co-Founders:
R. G. Rosenquist - U.S. Marine Raider Association
Robert A. Buerlein - President, Ek Commando Knife Co.
Director, U.S. Marine Raider Foundation

Museum Director: R. G. Rosenquist

Museum Curator
George A. MacRae

U.S. Marine Raider Association Museums Committee Co-Chairmen:
George A. MacRae
Robert A. Buerlein

Directions to the Marine Raider Museum
* (Going N) Traveling from Richmond, Va., north towards Washington, D.C., on Interstate 95, get off the Interstate at Exit 148. At the bottom of the hill, turn left. Go 1.5 miles to the Sentry Booth.
* (Going S) Traveling from the Washington, D.C. area south on Interstate 95, take Exit 148. At the bottom of the hill turn right. Go 1.3 miles to the Sentry Booth.
* At the Sentry Booth, you will need to show your driver's license and tell them where you are going. Your destination is "Raider Hall" or MACE (the Martial Arts Center of Excellence) to visit the U. S. Marine Raider Museum. The Sentry may not be aware of these specific locations, but tell him they are by TBS (The Basic School).
* From the Sentry booth, keep straight for 1.6 miles to the intersection at the Fire Department. (There is a water tower on the right at this intersection.) Turn left at the Fire Department and keep straight for 2.8 miles. At the stop sign, turn left. Go .2 mile to the next stop sign. Keep straight and drive up onto the parade deck/parking lot. At the top of the hill, "Raider Hall" will be located to your extreme left, at the end of the parking area.
* There are several reserved spots at the end of the area reserved for visitors going to the Martial Arts Training Center (Raider Hall); you may use these, if you like.
* A word of caution: when you visit the base, obey the speed limit and directional signs. When they say 35 MPH, they mean 35 MPH!
* Gung Ho!

On the West Coast...
Don't miss the Raider Room at the Recruit Training Depot, Marine Corps Base San Diego.

For more information and details, contact Raider Room Coordinator John McCarthy by e-mail: usraiderpatch.hqs@juno.com

by Michael Yon

The U.S. Marines are flooding in, and you might think that every Marine helicopter in our arsenal is here. I'll not give numbers and types other than to say the line of aircraft is long and formidable.

The U.S. Marines are a spectacle for the U.S. Army and also the British Army. The Marines will come in and live like pure animals, and build a base around themselves, whereas the British and American Armies will tend to build at least part of the base before coming in. One Marine commander told me that during the early part of this war, his men didn't even shower for three months. We talked for a couple of hours and he was proud that his Marines didn't need a shower for three months, and that his Marines killed a lot of Taliban and managed to lose only one good man. That's the Marines. They'll show up in force with no warning, and their reputation with U.S. Army and Brits who have fought alongside them is stellar. A NPR photographer who just spent more than three weeks with the Marines could not praise them enough, saying he'd been with them in Iraq, too, and that when Marines take casualties, their reaction is to continue to attack. They try to stay in contact until they finish the enemy, no matter how long it takes. Truly they are animals when it comes to the fight. Other than that, great guys. Tonight at dinner, a young Marine Lance Corporal sat in front of me at the crowded dining facility. "Good evening, Sir," he said. I asked, "Are you living like animals out there?" "Livin' the dream, Sir!" They are fantastic.

Ek Commando Knife Company
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Ek Commando Knife Co.