Sept. 9, 2013 --
The 24th Marine Regiment unit colors along with its prestigious history were cased to pave the way for Combat Logistics Regiment 4 during a deactivation and activation ceremony at the unit’s headquarters Sept. 8.
The actions resulted from the three year Force Structure Review Group which announced the decision in 2012, in order to accomplish the best realignment and utilization of forces within the Marine Corps, said Lt. Col. Michael Myers, regimental inspector-instructor of the new unit.
“It gives the Marine Corps as a whole, and the active component more capability,” Myers said. “It’s restructuring of capability as opposed to cost-cutting.”
According to Myers, the 4th Marine Division will go from three infantry regiments to two, and the 4th Marine Logistics Group will go from individually functioning battalions to a system that more similarly resembles the active component. During the regiment’s history they were attacking beach heads in World War II or fighting the war on terror in Iraq and Afghanistan, said Sgt. Maj. Brad A. Kasal.
“Each time the nation needed it, the 24th Marine Regiment stood up and answered the call,” he said.
For the last 10 years reserve Marines have been overseas and in combat with the active-duty Marines house-to-house, and street-to-street, Kasal said.
Every Military Occupational Specialty is essential to the success of the Marine Corps, and the Marines from the 24th Regiment see this realignment as just another mission assigned to them, he said.
Col. Charles Sides, commanding officer, CLR-4, wants to focus on how the unit can best reinvent themselves to meet the national security needs of the nation.
“These are the Marines and sailors that have come to the sound of gunfire, while our nation is at war,” Sides said. “These are the civilians that raised their right hands and said I want to be a Marine, and they’re the ones we’re carrying into CLR-4.”
“Our nation needs a Marine Corps, our Marine Corps needs a reserve,” said Brig. Gen. James S. Hartsell, commanding general of 4th Marine Division based out of New Orleans. “We need strategic depth, operational capacity and tactical level to help our Corps, and that’s what the reserve does.”
Hartsell said with the activation of CLR-4, the reserves will still be a vital asset to the Corps. “Our Marine Corps needs our reserve Marines to continue showing up to drill, to train and work hard because our nation will call us and we need to continue to stay prepared to assist our active Marines,” he said. “Our reserves are a key part of our total nation’s defense.”
The young Marines out there need to work hard, stay in the Marine Corps and look up to the Marines above them, Hartsell said. “Keep pushing, keep giving, and keep serving your nation,” Hartsell said.
Senior leadership with Marine Forces Reserve said Marines need to exemplify excellence every day. “America loves and expects more from their Marines,” said Kasal. “They need to ask themselves every day when they look in the mirror do they represent what 237 years of Marines in the past have represented; are they standing up to that legacy every single day.”