News: Dedication of Service ‘A’ blouse pays homage to Medal of Honor recipient
Story by Sgt. Christopher Zahn
QUANTICO, Va - When Sgt. Walter Singleton paid the ultimate sacrifice on the battlefields of Vietnam, he died a hero. He was honored with the nation’s highest award, the Medal of Honor, and his valorous actions earned him a place in Marine Corps history.
He is remembered today aboard Marine Corps Base Quantico through Barracks 2003, better known as Singleton Hall. Inside the barracks is the Walter K. Singleton Memorial Library, a room decorated with mementos and pictures of Singleton’s time in the Corps.
Every year, a group of family members tours the barracks and visits the library to remember their brother, uncle and friend. This year, they saw for the first time the newest addition to the library, Sgt. Singleton’s restored Service ‘A’ blouse. Singleton’s blouse was donated by his family last year to the National Museum of the Marine Corps and restored by their History Division.
Seeing the blouse returned to its original condition mounted in a display case provoked an emotional response from his sister, Carolyn Murphy.
“That looks so good,” she said as she entered the room. “That beats the heck out of it being in a closet; it’s wonderful, absolutely wonderful.”
The library is more than a place to store books for the Marines of Headquarters and Service Battalion. They also hold their meritorious promotion and Marine and Noncommissioned Officer of the Quarter boards there.
“Sgt. Singleton was one of the finest and we bring in H&S Battalion’s finest to compete against each other,” said Maj. Matthew Reis, the commanding officer of Headquarters and Service Company. “We try to utilize all that Sgt. Singleton represents and pass that ethos on to the next generation.”
For Singleton’s two sisters and niece, seeing the room and the uniform are an everlasting memory of their personal hero.