MARINE CORPS CAMP PENDLETON, Calif. -- Service members gathered at the Pacific View Event Center here, to honor the Marines of 1st Marine Division who earned awards during the 2013 Marine Corps Motor Transport Association award ceremony.
The Marines with Truck Company, Headquarters Battalion, 1st Marine Division, earned the title of 2013’s Marine Corps Motor Transportation Unit of the Year for demonstrating exceptional technical and tactical proficiency and dependability.
Some of the factors that pushed the company beyond the competition were the astonishing number of gear and personnel they transported both in garrison and while deployed, while maintaining combat readiness in case they needed to respond to any crisis.
From October 2012 to September 2013, they transported more than seven million pounds of supplies.
“It’s a real honor to be able to accept this award on behalf of my Marines,” said Capt. Frank Robinson, commanding officer of Truck Company, Headquarters Battalion, 1st Marine Division. “The Marines worked extremely hard while deployed and in the states. It’s nice that they are being recognized for their hard work.”
Not only did the company excel, but four Marines in “The Blue Diamond” earned individual awards. One such Marine was Cpl. Eduardo Navarro, a motor transport mechanic with 3rd Combat Engineer Battalion. He earned the Mechanic of the Year award.
“This really means a lot to me, said Navarro, a 22-year-old native of El Paso, Texas.”
He added that it meant more to him because it showed he can work hard and recover from his mistakes.
Navarro received a non-judicial punishment for an incident that happened when he was new to the Marine Corps. He said he constantly worked hard to show his command that he regretted his mistake.
His hard work was noticed by his superiors and subordinates who believe that he was the best mechanic in the Marine Corps for the past year.
Other Marines who won awards were Chief Warrant Officer 2 Paul Klug, maintenance officer with Truck Co. Klug, a 40-year-old native of Oshkosh, Wis., earned the Maintenance Officer of the Year award.
Sergeant Michael Sullivan, a maintenance chief with 3rd Combat Engineer Battalion, earned the Maintenance Chief of the Year award. Sullivan is a 28-year-old native of Festus, Mo.
Corporal Jager Hibler, a motor transportation operator with 3rd Combat Engineer Bn., earned the Operator of the Year award. The 22-year-old native of Alamogordo, N.M., plans to continue doing his job to the best of his abilities.
Major Gen. Lawrence D. Nicholson, the commanding general of 1st Marine Division, awarded the Marines at the ceremony. He said he was extremely proud of the motor transportation Marines he has in the division.
“These Marines are arguably some of the most unnoticed yet most needed Marines in the division,” said Maj. Gen. Nicholson. “They continue to show what type of Marines we have here at “The Blue Diamond” by earning nearly half of the Motor Transportation Association awards for this past year.”
With this year’s award ceremony coming to a close, Marines serving with 1st Marine Division said they will continue working hard to remain ready to respond when the Nation needs them.