MARINE CORPS BASE CAMP LEJEUNE, N.C. -- Marines, veterans and their families came together in remembrance of
fallen Beirut Marines during a wreath laying ceremony at Camp Geiger on
Marine Corps Air Station New River, Oct. 23.
The ceremony was the last of three memorial services held in the Marine
Corps Base Camp Lejeune area to memorialize the Marines of 1st Battalion
8th Marines involved in bombing. The wreath was laid at the head of a
stone template on Camp Geiger by Col. Steven Wolf, School of Infantry
East commanding officer.
"It’s sad to see the families come through and understand that they lost
a loved one in that bombing," said Wolf. "At the same time it’s good to
see the Marine Corps, especially the Marines here at the School of
Infantry East, come together to recognize the Marines that came before
and their sacrifice."
After the memorial was over, Marines who graduated from the school were
given the opportunity to talk to some of the former Marines in 1st
Battalion, 8th Marines and get their perspective on what it means to be a
"I look around and I see some young Marines helping us out at the event
and I think it’s a great way to pass on our traditions to them," said
Wolf. "Even though it’s been quite a while since these Marines were
killed in combat, we still come out here to honor and recognize them
today. Understanding the service and sacrifice of the Marines that came
before them is the legacy of the Marine Corps.
During the last phase of the ceremony, Marines, former Marines and their
families formed two lines and either saluted or placed their hands over
their hearts for the former Marines with 1st Battalion 8th Marines and
their families led by Wolf.
"When I come here and I see young Marines, I feel so proud to know
(they’re) the legacy going forward," said Kevin Jiggetts, a former
Marine with 1st Battalion, 8th Marines. "All of us that served there
have a saying ‘our first duty is to remember’. People won’t remember it
every day like I do, but people should remember to take five minutes of
your day on Oct. 23 to remember."