News: Marines Inspire Athletes, Remember Hometown Hero
Story by Lance Cpl. Jessica Quezada
GLEN COVE, N.Y. - In honor of a forgotten hero, the City of Glen Cove, New York, will be the site of the Inaugural Dan Daly Cup lacrosse all-star game this Saturday at 12 p.m.
The event kicks-off with paying homage to Dan Daly at his memorial in the Glen Cove Monument Park the morning of the game.
Following the ceremony, a parade led by the Quantico Marine Corps Band will proceed to Glen Cove High School's Maiden Field, where Mayor Reginald Spinello, the mayor of Glen Cove, will begin the game with the official coin toss.
"It's a historic celebration for all of us in Glen Cove. Someone that's born here, the honors that he received and to have the Marines here, it's a real win for the city, the school and hopefully it will do something to promote the fine name of the Marine," said Spinello.
"They [the players] are very excited - you have the best juniors from both counties in lacrosse here to play - and we can't wait to see everybody out there."
Many of the young athletes say they are enjoying the competition and the values they are learning from the Marines around them. The exclusive experience spans from lessons in leadership to lessons in physical strength, something not every high school junior gets to practice on a regular basis.
"Right from the first day when we got our jerseys and we started with the community service, I knew that it was for a great cause and everything they were saying about Dan Daly and what this was all about, I immediately bought into the cause," said Cole Samaroo, Team Virtue Captain and Syosset High School junior. "It was really a humbling experience to learn what these men and women went through - I really want to use this experience to help me on the lacrosse field and just as a person - I learned leadership is never easy and it comes at a price. The feats that Dan Daly conquered was just amazing and something that not many people could do. I couldn't understand the things he must have done, the men that he saved and just the honor that he gave to his country."
The preceding week of the Dan Daly Cup included dynamic training opportunities led by Marines and have had Nassau and Suffolk County lacrosse coaches with New York Lizard players serve as coaches for the game. These coaches and athletes deliver a huge role as multifaceted leaders for the Dan Daly Cup players.
"The biggest part that the players are getting, is a complete understanding of what the Marine Corps values are and how they can bring those values into their daily life," said Steve Tripp, head lacrosse coach of Glen Cove High School and the coach for Team Virtue. "They took away the value of leadership … they're used to a leadership style of student-teacher, player-coach and I think going through the training they went through it's been a unique experience and big part of what they've gotten out of it."
Known amongst the Marine Corps for his tenacity and fighting spirit, Sgt. Maj. Dan Daly is a two-time Medal of Honor recipient and is one of the Marine Corps' most admired heroes. His iconic fearlessness in battle set a standard for present-day Marines and has become a staple for our nations future leaders.
The community outreach performed by players and Marines highlights the importance of key figures in Marine Corps history and serves as a legacy for locals who wish to pay respect to such a quintessential warfighter. Daly's repeated deeds of heroism and great service to our nation should never be forgotten, always respected, and without a doubt, honored by future generations.
"The Marines are very excited about this event and the community is very proud to have this icon from their hometown," said Maj. Robert Jones, commanding officer for Recruiting Station New York. "We were able to work with players in the 3-day camp a week prior to the game that involved community service, intense physical fitness drills, and a leadership seminar performed by the Marines. They were able to instill leadership traits and principles that the Marine Corps uses day in and day out, something these players can take back to their school, teams and communities."
As Marines continue to leave footprints across the country and world-wide, the Corps dedication to give back to local communities will foster civic ties to boost enthusiasm for upcoming events. The tribute to Dan Daly is a small way to honor such a memorable figure and will spark enthusiasm for Marines, in any clime and place, to uphold his lasting legacy.