U.S. Marines Corps

02/14/2017 | News release | Distributed by Public on 02/14/2017 08:44

Passing on the Legacy

By Cpl. Juan A. Soto-Delgado, II Marine Expeditionary Force

MARINE CORPS BASE CAMP LEJEUNE, North Carolina --
Liversedge Hall hosted Marines across the 2nd Marine Division and retired veterans for a 76th birthday battle colors rededication ceremony at Camp Lejeune, N.C., Feb. 10, 2017. During the ceremony veterans from all walks of life and different eras of American conflict awarded the division with ribbons for its individual units' actions while deployed, helping with humanitarian relief and maintaining combat readiness.

'The reason we exist, the purpose of this division is to fight and win the nation's battles. That's exactly what [2nd MarDiv] has done for the last 76 years,' said Maj. Gen. John K. Love. '[During the ceremony] a veteran is going to carry a streamer and will pass the streamer off to an active duty Marine as a symbol of passing down the legacy and traditions of the respective units within 2nd MarDiv.'
Love said that the importance of the history within 2nd Marine Division wouldn't have been possible without the Marines that dedicated their lives and time to the unit. He also directed words to the current active duty Marines to continue the proud legacy and traditions of 2nd Marine Division and to always remember the meaning of Semper Fidelis.

Among the veterans that served, Jim Mahoney served in the Marine Corps from 1955 through 1959 with 2nd Tank Battalion and had the honor to bestow the Presidential Unit Citation Streamer on 2nd MarDiv's Marine Corps flag.

'My Marine Corps experience has been very rewarding physically, mentally and spiritually,' said Mahoney. 'It made me accept responsibility at a young age and it gave me maturity. The experience of meeting men and women in uniform, sharing the same goals and being back to back, was meaningful.'

Mahoney retired in 1959 as a corporal serving with 2nd Tank Battalion. He was stationed in Camp Lejeune serving his four-year contract as a tank crewman.

'We've come a long way since my time because we are educating [new generations] more today. We thought we had it all at the time, but progress moves on, and these Marines today seem to have a good head on their shoulders,' Said Mahoney. 'I'm very excited for [the new generation].They have goals to attain and they stand fast on what they want to do. We have a new generation today who are up more on the world than we were at my time, and I wish them all luck.'

The ceremony concluded with a quote from Owen Eastwood, which Love read to the audience from the book 'Legacy':
'Each of us [are] a link in an unbreakable chain of people, arm in arm, going back to where the tribe began ― our first ancestor ― through to the end of time. The sun slowly moves down this chain of people ― signifying life. […] What is important is that when the sun is on us we inherit our tribe's values, stories, mythology and standards ― live to that standard ― and then pass it on to the next person in the chain.'