Yesterday morning, under a bright sun and against brisk winds, I had the honor of observing the Marine Graduation Ceremony at Marine Corps Recruit Depot, Parris Island, SC.I had come to congratulate a young man whom I had only met a few times, but had followed his decision to become a Marine recruit and his subsequent training. This boy was now a man and his job was to protect my and your family from all enemies…foreign and domestic.
I was able to meet Harvey’s parents and several of his relatives and friends. My good friend, Ed Maino drove down with me and we hooked up with Mike Enloe and the parents of Matt Dillon, USMC, (KIA, 12 December 2006), Neal and Lucy Dillion.
There were approximately 680 recruits who pinned on their Eagle, Globe & Anchor for the first time. Thousands of people filled the parade deck and we were all there for the same reason….to cheer on our Marine.
The band played, the Marines marched and I am positive, very positive, that I was not the only one there who was wondering when this day of joy will be replaced with fear and concern.
As the 680+ Marines stood at parade rest, we got to hear the speeches and awards, which by the way, PFC H. Stone, Company E, 1st Recruit Battalion, Platoon 2000, received the “Platoon High Shooter” award, which will surely come in handy as he pursues his MOS, (Military Operating Specialty) of being a Military Police Officer.
After the graduation was complete, Ed and I drove around the Depot, visited the USMC Museum, grabbed a burger across the street and headed home for a 3pm funeral. It was five hours of driving (round trip) for a one-hour ceremony, but it was worth every minute and mile.
Congratulations PFC Stone.Thank you for your service and Semper Fidelis
Last Spring, I visited Parris Island for the first time. See my observations here.
And some more pictures…..
Great article and pictures. It was a great honor to be included in Harvey’s graduation. He will serve his America,fellow Marines and his family/friends well. He renews our faith in the youth of America to serve and defend our country. America can sleep peacefully knowning that Marine’s like Harvey are keeping us secure. We wish him well and a safe journey.
He will be proud of becoming a Marine his entire life. They are few and proud. Proud of this young man.
OOH RAH MARINE CORPS!!
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