MARINE CORPS AIR STATION NEW RIVER, N.C. --
Leaders and their spouses from 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing gathered at the Officers’ Club aboard Marine Corps Air Station New River to discuss some of the issues affecting their Marines and families, Friday.
It was an opportunity to take the pulse of the local aviation community first hand, said Maj. Gen. Robert F. Hedelund, the commanding general of 2nd MAW and Pompano Beach, Fla., native.
Leaders discussed the Family Readiness Officer program, the merger of MCAS New River’s Marine Corps Community Services with Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune, medical care and other issues.
"I got a chance to come down here and hear not only from the commanders, but their spouses about problems or concerns without having them filtered through staff," said Hedelund.
Getting that direct perspective was important to Hedelund, he said.
Sgt. Maj. Lynnette Marr-Gaye, the sergeant major of Marine Light Attack Helicopter Squadron 269 and Waynesboro, Va., native, felt the discussion allowed the leaders to discuss how issues affect local squadrons.
"I think it’s important for us to hear what’s going on and discuss it in a public forum to get creative ideas on how to solve concerns," said Marr-Gaye.
The leaders were also able to hear the commanding general’s thoughts on the matters, she added.
The input of spouses was valuable to the aviation community, said Marr-Gaye. They provided an additional perspective on the issues presented, and raised concerns the Marines may not have considered.
"They’re a part of the team," said Marr-Gaye. "They’re an important part of Marine Corps success. Behind every great Marine is a good support network and it’s usually the family."
The leaders and their spouses walked away with a shared vision for problems and solutions, said Annette Salmon, spouse of Col. Timothy M. Salmon, the commanding officer of MCAS New River and Melbourne, Fla., native.
"We are a team in 2nd MAW and we are working together to make sure the team is as strong as it can be," said Hedelund.