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Special Events

June 2015 Reflections

MCTOG-Logo_SmallSizeOver the past few weeks, the Marine Corps Tactics and Operations Group (MCTOG) held several events in recognition of Marines retiring, leaving, getting promoted and for just doing great things.

What follows is a short summary of the various events impacting our command.

Retirements

The Marine Corps Tactics and Operations Group (MCTOG) held a retirement ceremony for LtCol Gregory Butcher for his 18 years of service and LtCol Christopher Teague for his 20 years of service.  Sergeant Lyonel Jose was among other Marines leaving the Marine Corps and transitioning over to life as a civilian.

Several family members, friends and fellow Marines showed up for LtCol Christopher Teague’s last appearance in uniform as an active duty Marine.

Presiding over the ceremony was Colonel Craig Wonson, MCTOG Commanding Officer, who recounted many of the events that took place during LtCol Teague’s career. Colonel Wonson begin his comments by noting the many empty rows of seats during the ceremony, acknowledging the fact that many of the Marines who would normally fill the seats for this important event were occupied with training and preparing for the harsh life of combat. Colonel Wonson continued his comments thanking LtCol Teague’s family members and acknowledging how critical they have been to his success. “LtCol Teague is one of the most humble Marines I’ve ever known,” Col Wonson stated as he outlined the hallmarks of LtCol Teague’s career which included time as both an enlisted Marine and an officer; and included many deployments in which LtCol Teague impacted Marine operations around the world.

During the retirement ceremony, LtCol Teague was presented with the Meritorious Service Medal (MSM) for his hard work and diligence after which LtCol Teague, in his parting comments, emphasized the team concept, highlighting the fact that “we need one another, to carry each other across the finish line.”

The Meritorious Service Medal (MSM) is a military award presented to members of the United States Armed Forces who distinguished themselves by outstanding meritorious achievement or service. The medal was designed as a third meritorious award to provide appropriate recognition for non-combat achievement or service comparable to that of the Bronze Star Medal for combat achievement or service.

We wish both LtCol Butcher and LtCol Teague the best in your future endeavors. Godspeed and Semper Fidelis!

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Colonel Craig Wonson, MCTOG Commanding Officer, and Master Gunnery Sergeant Stephen Lowe, MCTOG Senior Enlisted Advisor, present LtCol Christopher Teague with the Meritorious Service Medal. Colonel Craig Wonson, MCTOG Commanding Officer, and Master Gunnery Sergeant Stephen Lowe, MCTOG Senior Enlisted Advisor, present Mrs. Teague with a Letter of Appreciation.
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LtCol Christopher Teague offers a few parting comments, thanking the Marines of MCTOG and his family for their support during his time at MCTOG.

Hails

Hails are the traditional way of welcoming new members to the organization. During the hails, leaders in the organization will introduce new members to existing members of the organization in an open forum. Hails also serve as a great ice breaker as new members have the opportunity to meet some of the key personnel within the organization this way. MCTOG welcomed several Marines and civilians to its family.

Welcome aboard! We look forward to integrating you into what we do to prepare Marines for combat. Semper Fidelis!

Welcome Aboard Marines!

Farewells

MCTOG says farewell to Master Gunnery Sergeant Jose Valentin-Santana and Gunnery Sergeant Samuel Torres. Both Marines have left MCTOG to continue their Marine Corps careers with new Commands.

During his time at MCTOG, Master Gunnery Sergeant Jose Valentin-Santana servedfarewell2 as the MCTOG Senior Enlisted Advisor (SEA). As the SEA, Master Gunnery Sergeant Valentin-Santana was essentially responsible for the welfare of all staff personnel at MCTOG. When he was not taking care of staff personnel, Master Gunnery Sergeant Valentin-Santana oversaw the Family Readiness Officer (FRO) Program, supporting the family members of our Marines and enlisting their support in planning family events for MCTOG.

Gunnery Sergeant Torres also served in key functions within MCTOG as well, performing his duties in ways that personify the typical work ethic of every Marine.

It is with a sad heart we say goodbye, but we wish you all the best as you embark on your next challenge in the Marine Corps. Semper Fidelis!

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Master Gunnery Sergeant Jose Valentin-Santana receiving his going away gift.

Awards

MCTOG held an awards ceremony recognized the hard work and diligence of several Marines. These Marines received awards which included:

  • (4) Letter of Appreciation
  • (1) Certificate of Commendation
  • (3) Good Conduct Medals
  • (4) Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal
  • (3) Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal
  • (1) Meritorious Service Medal

The Good Conduct Medal is one of the oldest military awards of the United States Armed Forces. The U.S. Navy’s variant of the Good Conduct Medal was established in 1869 and the Marine Corps version in 1896. The medal is awarded to any active-duty enlisted member of the United States military who completes three consecutive years of “honorable and faithful service.” Such service implies that a standard enlistment was completed without any non-judicial punishment, disciplinary infractions, or court martial offenses.

The Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal is given for meritorious service or achievement in a combat or non-combat situation based on sustained performance or specific achievement of a superlative nature, and shall be of such merit as to warrant more tangible recognition than is possible by a fitness report or performance evaluation, but which does not warrant a Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal or higher.

The Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal is given to a person who, while serving in any capacity with the Navy or Marine Corps (including foreign military personnel), distinguishes himself/herself in a manner above that normally expected and sufficient to distinguish the individual above those performing similar services.

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Colonel Craig Wonson, MCTOG Commanding Officer, Master Gunnery Sergeant Stephen Lowe, MCTOG Senior Enlisted Advisor, present Master Gunnery Sergeant Steven Pearson with the Meritorious Service Medal (MSM).

Tactical MAGTF Integration Course

MCTOG held a graduation for the class of Tactical MAGTF Integration Course (TMIC) 2-15, awarding several outstanding students as honor graduates. The guest of honor for this TMIC graduation was the former Commanding Officer of MCTOG, Colonel Matthew Jones.

Family Events

MCTOG held a number of fundraising and family events past few months. Fundraising events included the sale of food and other merchandise at the “We Salute You” music fest held in May. This was a fun and festive event for the family and friends of the Marines, civilians, and contractors working at MCTOG. Additional events held by MCTOG included a yard sale and lunches.  Keep checking our eMarine and Facebook sites for more fun in upcoming events.

Upcoming Events

Check our eMarine (http://www.emarine.org/) page or our Facebook page for upcoming events.

 

 

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