JACKSONVILLE, N.C. (WNCT)–Marines from Camp Johnson spent the day cleaning and beautifying the grounds of the Lejeune Memorial Gardens and veteran cemetery.
During the past week, over 1100 Marines and Sailors volunteered across the community.
Friday, 300 Marines gathered at the Lejeune Memorial Gardens and Coastal Carolina Veteran’s Cemetery to spend the day in-service by giving back to the community.
“A day of service to me is appreciating those who’ve served before me and serving for those who appreciate me and helping give on to what was given of me,” PFC. Luke Tyler Mackey said.
“There’s just a lot done for us and for people who serve, you see it everywhere,” PFC. Jamuna Fulton said.
Those who volunteered are in the Single Marines Program.
“The focus of the program is: what can we do to make things better for them?” Susan Goodrich, SMP Branch Head, said. “Obviously, it’s retention. We want them to stay in the Marine Corps.”
Marines put their helping hands to good use at both sites on Friday.
“From picking up trash, to cleaning the grave sites, and sweeping the sidewalks, we are making sure the memorials are in the highest state we can have them,” Sgt. Maj. Miguel Rodriguez said.
“We make sure these monuments are always clean and properly kept up so that even in death they’re never forgotten and always respected,” PFC. Gage Bergsch said.
Marines also spent the week cleaning up DoDea schools, visiting veterans’ homes and beautifying the USO.
“As a PFC, just joining the Marine Corps, it does mean a lot to see these things and to actually read on it, understand what happened and to know that I’m actually being a part of making it look beautiful and holding that honor,” PFC. Alante Johnson said.