2nd Marine Logistics Group
Story by Cpl. Devin Nichols
CAMP LEJEUNE, N.C. - At dawn, a Marine steps out of his car and walks toward the company building.
Morning dew coats the grass and street lights show him his way to the door.
In his everyday routine of unlocking the company office, when each move he makes is the same as the day before, something catches his eye.
Just to the left are two pictures.
Two memorials are posted of Cpl. Christopher M. Monahan Jr. (right), and Lance Cpl. Dale W. Means (left), motor transportation operators with Transportation and Support Company, Combat Logistics Battalion 2, 2nd Marine Logistics Group, at the company motor pool aboard Camp Lejeune, N.C., July 15, 2013. Means and Monahan made the ultimate sacrifice in Helmand Province, Afghanistan, in November 2012 in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. Photo by Cpl. Devin Nichols
Photographs of two Marines are posted at the window of the company office for everyone to see: Cpl. Christopher M. Monahan Jr. and Lance Cpl. Dale W. Means.
“It brings a little smile to my face every time I see it,” said Cpl. Frank M. Jones III, the training noncommissioned officer for Transportation and Support Company, Combat Logistics Battalion 2, 2nd Marine Logistics Group and an Annville, Penn., native. “I tell myself every day I should be thankful
that I am still here, no matter how tough work is going to be that day, I’m still blessed to have my life, family, job and wife. It makes me remember the good times I had with those Marines.”
The two memorials made for Means and Monahan have descriptions of the sequence of events that took place overseas, pictures of the Purple Heart Ribbons, Combat Action Ribbons and a portrait of the fallen Marines.
Means and Monahan were both killed in Helmand Province, Afghanistan, while conducting combat operations in support of Operation Enduring Freedom.
A traditional memorial service was held Feb. 22, 2013, for the two fallen Marines, as their brothers and sisters-in-arms gave their respect to Means, Monahan and their families.
“Once I met the family at the memorial service, then it really hit home,” said Jones. “I realized they are not just part of our lives but they had a real family, too.”
Shortly after the battalion returned home and held the memorial ceremony, TS Co. received a new company commander who immediately reached out to the Marines with support.
Capt. Lee Stuckey, the company commander of TS Co., knowing the unit had lost two Marines on deployment, asked Jones where the pictures were of Means and Monahan. Jones said they were up at the battalion headquarters, a place where junior Marines do not normally spend their work
Stuckey wanted to do something more for the Marines so he decided that Means and Monahan should be shared with the junior Marines wherever they usually reside.
“He told us he wanted to have something for the Marines at the barracks and at the motor pool,” said Jones.
Stuckey and 1st Sgt. Joshua A. Peterson, the TS Co. first sergeant, teamed up to implement the
plaques to get something made for their fallen brethren.
On his own time, Jones worked with Combat Cameral Chief , 2nd Marine Logistics Group to create the memorials and share them with his fellow Marines.
Combat Camera has the ability to make signs, print photos and produce videos, so they took the photos from Jones and helped produce something memorable.
“The positive feedback from their family was huge,” said Jones. “They lost their sons but gained a lot of sons as well.”
Jones mailed Means and Monahan’s family copies of the exact memorial signs that are posted today at the company barracks and motor pool.
“It’s really cool to have the pictures here; most places don’t do this,” said Lance Cpl. Michael L. Cooper, a Christiansburg, Va., native, and motor transportation operator with TS Co. “With Cpl. Jones making those for us, it reminds us not of their death, but who they were.”
Now, every day when work is done and Marines are headed back to the barracks, or when service members are headed to work in the morning, the Marines with the company get to see their two comrades.
“It makes me want to be better for my Marines,” said Cpl. Jake R. Healy, a St. Cloud, Minn., native, and motor transportation operator with TS Co. “It’s just nice to see it every day.”
“This is something we wanted to do to remember those Marines on a daily basis, because this is where the Marines are, either at the barracks or at the motor pool,” said Jones. “Wherever their daily job is, they can see it.”