CAMP LEJEUNE, N.C. - More than 150 Marines and sailors with General Support Maintenance Company, 2nd Maintenance Battalion, 2nd Marine Logistics Group conducted a nine-mile hike through the townships of Carolina Beach and Kure Beach Feb 27.
The hike was used to train and educate the Marines about the Civil War battle of Fort Fisher and allow them to walk in the footsteps of those who have fought and laid down their lives for this great country.
“A lot of times we don’t know as Marines what happened in the civil war or how we were involved with it,” said 1st Lt. Joseph P. Strumolo, the company commander of General Support Maintenance Company, 2nd Maintenance Bn., 2nd MLG. “By doing this hike I wanted to give my Marines the chance to see where they’ve come from and why it is important to learn about history because, inevitably, it repeats itself.”
Marines and sailors with the company hiked with approximately 70 pounds of gear at a pace of three miles per hour, stopping at historical locations for professional military education lectures.
During the hike the company passed Carolina Beach Elementary School, where students and teachers lined the street waving American flags, holding handmade signs and cheered the service members on.
“I thought it was great to see the Marines hiking,” said Carter Atkinson, a student from CBE. “They make some of the biggest sacrifices just to make hundreds of people safe. It’s really helpful for all of us who can’t fight in the war.”
Once passed the school the company navigated through local neighborhoods with an escort from the Carolina Beach Police department. Residents waved, shook hands, and thanked the Marines and sailors for their service.
The hike culminated at the Fort Fisher Museum. Once there, service members removed their cumbersome loads and toured the facility.
“It was great going through the historic landmarks and seeing all the sights, said Cpl. Hasani Ferraro, an Amphibious Assault Vehicle Mechanic with GSM Co., 2nd Maintenance Bn., 2nd MLG. “You can hear about battles all day, but actually being there and closing your eyes and picturing what actually happened there on that day really hits home.”