Edward James Land

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Edward James Land
Nickname(s) Jim, EJ
Born (1935-06-04)June 4, 1935
Lincoln, Nebraska
Allegiance United States
Service/branch United States Marine Corps
Years of service 1953–1977
Rank Major
Unit 1st Marine Division
Battles/wars Vietnam War
Awards Legion of Merit
Other work NRA Secretary

Edward James Land, Jr. or Jim Land (born 4 June 1935 in Lincoln) is a retired Marine Corps Officer who was instrumental in starting the Marine Scout Sniper program.[1][2]

United States Marine Corps[edit]

Land was born in Lincoln Nebraska in 1935.

He enlisted in the Marine Corps at age 17 in 1953. Land went on to become a Staff Sergeant and a Drill Instructor before attending Officer Candidate School in 1959. Upon graduating OCS, Land was commissioned as a Second Lieutenant in the 4th Marine Regiment. As an officer, Land demonstrated an aptitude for competitive shooting and was selected for the Marine Corps Rifle Team.[3]

In 1961 Land founded the first modern Sniper Course for the Marine Corps.[4]

In Vietnam, Land was the Commanding Officer of Carlos Hathcock, whom he had trained in one of his early Sniper Courses.[3]

After Vietnam, Land served as the USMC Marksmanship coordinator.[4]

Community Life[edit]

Land was active in the community and from 1977 until 1980 held the position of Scoutmaster for Boy Scout Troop 1183 in Triangle, Virginia. During his tenure he mentored many Scouts, several to the rank of Eagle. He was also instrumental in spearheading a newspaper recycling program years before such recycling practices were commonplace. Newspaper from the local community was collected once a month by the Scouts and sold to an insulation company to benefit the troop. From September 16 through the 29, 1978 funds from these efforts sent 12 Scouts and 3 leaders to Brownsea Island, England, the location of Lord Baden Powell's first Boy Scout camping trip in 1907.

After military service[edit]

Land retired from the Marine Corps as a Major in 1977.

Land was elected as Secretary of the National Rifle Association in 1994.[4] He retired from this position in April 2015.[5]


  1. ^ Senich, Peter R. (1996). The one-round war: USMC scout-snipers in Vietnam. Paladin Press. p. 10. ISBN 9780873648677. The task of organizing a First Marine Division sniper program was assigned to Capt. Edward J. "Jim" Land Jr., an accomplished marksman and member of several championship Marine Corps shooting teams. 
  2. ^ Henderson, Charles (2003). Silent Warrior: The Marine Sniper's Vietnam Story Continues. Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated. p. 283. ISBN 978-0-425-18864-4. Retrieved 13 August 2013. 
  3. ^ a b Henderson, Charles (1 October 2001). Marine Sniper: 93 Confirmed Killes. Penguin Group US. p. 53. ISBN 978-1-101-22091-7. Retrieved 13 August 2013. 
  4. ^ a b c "NRA Secretary Named Defender of Freedom". National Rifle Association. 15 February 2011. Retrieved 23 August 2011. 
  5. ^ Potomac News September 17, 1978

External links[edit]