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Children play on a mound of sand during 2nd Marine Logistics Group’s Family Day at the Geogtte Field House aboard Camp Lejeune, N.C., May 12, 2011. Family Day is an annual tradition amongst units in the Marine Corp in which Marines and sailors enjoy time off work and come together with their family and friends for a day of recreation, food and shows. (U.S. Marine Corps photo by Pfc. Franklin E. Mercado)

Photo by Pfc. Franklin E. Mercado

Marines, sailors enjoy afternoon with friends, family

13 May 2011 | Pfc. Franklin E. Mercado

Marines are known for training vigorously, often stopping at nothing to complete missions, which is why they are often referred to as the world’s 9-1-1 Force. However, there is another side of the Marine Corps that many people seldom get a chance to see.

Family days are an annual tradition among many units in the Marine Corps that serve as a relaxed setting where Marines and their families can come together for a day of recreation, food, magic shows and entertainment, like singing and dancing.

On May 12, 2011, 2nd Marine Logistics Group hosted a family day of their own at the Goettge Memorial Field House aboard Camp Lejeune.

The purpose of the event was to bring Marines, sailors and their families together in a safe environment to promote unit cohesion, said Master Sgt. Andre Mayhue, operations section chief for the 2nd MLG.

“We take these events very seriously, because we want people to know we are family oriented, not just blood-thirsty Marines,” said Mayhue. “So we take our time planning and ensuring everything is going to run smoothly.”

The event took two months of planning, but it took only a few minutes for families to inundate the field where children swarmed bounce houses, a petting zoo and face painting stations. Rock climbing and sumo wrestling were also on the afternoon’s agenda, along with various other activities.

There were so many activities to do that Marines like Cpl. Jamie Beal couldn’t decide what to do first.

“I don’t think I’ve been to a family day this big,” said Beal, a chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear defense specialist with Combat Logistics Regiment 27, 2nd MLG. “The unit did a good job, everyone is having fun and the games are getting competitive.”

Though the day’s purpose wasn’t to be better than the next guy, Marines’ competitive nature showed. Everything became a competition, said Lance Cpl. Thomas Seals, an administrative clerk with CLR-27.

“We know it’s all for fun, but you still don’t want to lose,” said Seals. “The rock climb and the sumo wrestling are the two events everyone is trying to out-compete each other in. It gets pretty fierce.”

After Marines settled their scores in the sumo pits and the commotion slowed down, Marines, sailors and their families returned to their homes with what was said to be a good Family Day.

“From beginning to end, this was the best family day I’ve been to yet,” concluded Beal.


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