News Icon

News: Band welcomed by Oshima

Courtesy Story

Band welcomed by Oshima 1st Lt. Clayton Groover

Members of the III Marine Expeditionary Force Band perform for the crowds during the 61st Kesennuma City Port Festival parade at Kesennuma City, Japan, Aug. 12. Members of the band would later end the night with dance and jazz performances. (U.S. Marine Corps photo by Pfc. Terence G. Brady/Released)

KESENNUMA CITY, Japan — The III Marine Expeditionary Force Band performed in a parade during the 61st Kesennuma City Port Festival in Kesennuma City, Japan, Aug. 12.

“U-S-A! U-S-A! U-S-A!” The chant could be heard over the din of the crowd as Marines marched by in perfect unison.
Kesennuma City was unable to hold the festival last year due to rebuilding efforts following the Great East Japan Earthquake and subsequent tsunami March 11, 2011.

The mayor of Kesennuma City wrote a letter inviting the III MEF Band to perform in the festival. A formal greeting from community officials accompanied by a drum performance kicked off the festivities and was followed by a ribbon-cutting ceremony.

“It was fantastic,” said Hironobu Sugawara, member of the Kesennuma City Assembly. “The city became more unified by the festival, and having the Marines participate was a great success.”

The participation of the Marines in the parade reminded the community how U.S. forces came to their aid as part of Operation Tomodachi, Sugawara added.

At that time, Okinawa-based Marines deployed to mainland Japan to offer assistance to the Government of Japan and to provide vital resources to assist recovery efforts.

Residents of the city are grateful for the assistance and recovery efforts. Some of the audience had tears in their eyes as the band marched by playing “The Marines’ Hymn.”

“It was sort of a dream for us that the Marines could come and play for the festival,” said Sugawara. “It is a true testament to the dedication that the Marine Corps has for their missions.”

Japanese citizens and leaders developed a close relationship with III MEF Marines and sailors as a result of the bilateral efforts of Operation Tomodachi, and the relationship has continued with several visits conducted between the citizens of the area and service members stationed on Okinawa.

“We were very excited about participating in the parade,” said Chief Warrant Officer Stephen B. Giove, the director and officer-in-charge of the band. “We are very grateful to do our part.”

The night ended with the band taking part in traditional festival dances with other parade participants and playing a variety of music.

“Seeing the audience get involved with our part in the parade was extremely emotional and very fulfilling,” said Giove. “It allows us to get closer to the audience and is a win-win situation for everyone.”

The band’s presence and performance created long-term memories for the people of Kesennuma, according to Sugawara.

“In the same way the homestay program impacted the community, the Marine Corps’ appearance at the festival is a memory that will never be forgotten,” said Sugawara. “Children came to the festival to see the Marines perform, and I believe it is the opinion of the whole island that our gratitude towards the Marine Corps is the strongest.”


Connected Media
ImagesBand welcomed by Oshima
A spectator takes a turn conducting the III Marine...
ImagesBand welcomed by Oshima
Chief Warrant Officer Stephen B. Giove conducts the III...
ImagesBand welcomed by Oshima
Master Gunnery Sgt. Michael R. Montoya leads the III...
ImagesBand welcomed by Oshima
Masaaki Ishiki holds a sign representing the III Marine...
ImagesBand welcomed by Oshima
Members of the III Marine Expeditionary Force Band...


Web Views
33
Downloads
0

Podcast Hits
0



Public Domain Mark
This work, Band welcomed by Oshima, is free of known copyright restrictions under U.S. copyright law.

Date Taken:08.12.2012

Date Posted:08.18.2012 20:21

Location:KESENNUMA CITY, OKINAWA, JP

More Like This

  • Okinawa-based Marines joined Japanese citizens for memorial ceremonies March 11 at Oshima Island and Kesennuma City in Miyagi prefecture, Japan, to commemorate the two-year anniversary of the Great East Japan Earthquake and subsequent tsunami of March 11, 2011.
  • Twenty-four children and six chaperones from Oshima District, Kesennuma City, Miyagi prefecture, arrived Jan. 11 at the Camp Foster Youth Center to take part in the second annual youth cultural exchange and homestay program.
  • The III Marine Expeditionary Force Band and the Japan Ground Self-Defense Force’s 15th Band held a combined music concert at the Okinawa City Civic Center here Sept. 17.
  • Lt. Gen. Kenneth J. Glueck Jr., commanding general of III Marine Expeditionary Force presented the III MEF Band an award recognizing the band as the 2012 Field Band of the Year for the United States Marine Corps at the III MEF Band Hall, today.

Options

  • Army
  • Marines
  • Navy
  • Air Force
  • Coast Guard
  • National Guard

HOLIDAY GREETINGS

SELECT A HOLIDAY:

VIDEO ON DEMAND

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Youtube
  • Flickr