Two Marines with 3d Civil Affairs Group, I Marine Expeditionary Force, received Bronze Stars during an awards ceremony, July 1.
Gunnery Sgt. Christian W. Murdock and Maj. Christopher W. Rogers were awarded for meritorious service while serving with 3d CAG, 3rd Battalion, 9th Marine Regiment, 2nd Marine Division, from October 2010 to April 2011 in support of Operation Enduring Freedom.
Murdock, from Aliso Viejo, Calif., served as the team chief for the unit while in Afghanistan. According to his award citation, he trained and guided commander’s emergency relief project purchasing officers and pay agents for eleven infantry companies to properly create, submit, monitor and close out deliberate projects, micro-grants and bulk funds. This resulted in the processing and supervision of 143 deliberate projects, 77 micro-grants and 24 bulk fund draws worth more than 10 million dollars.
Murdock was the purchasing officer for more than 45 kilometers of road projects. He successfully managed the Marjah sapling distribution project that distributed 70,000 sapling trees to local farmers, and he personally originated multiple school supply projects that provided much needed supplies to children and teachers throughout Southern Marjah.
Rogers, from Bakersfield, Calif., served as the team leader for the unit while deployed. According to his award citation, Rogers is credited for shaping the future of reconstruction and development in Marjah. He supervised and coordinated the efforts of eleven infantry companies’ civil military affairs sections throughout a hostile battlefield, resulting in 143 deliberate projects, 77 micro-grants and 24 bulk fund draws, totaling more than 10 million dollars worth of economic development.
Rogers was the project manager for highly visible projects in Marjah. He coordinated the opening and reconstruction of several schools including the Marjah High School, Koru Chareh School and the Afsal Chareh School. He led the construction of the comprehensive health center, the district governor’s compound, Loy Chareh Bazaar refurbishment and 41 kilometers of road improvements. He initiated a temporary teachers’ contract that resulted in 1,000 additional students in Marjah.
The combined effects of Roger and Murdock throughout the area of operation resulted in degradation in enemy activity, increased security for the citizens of Marjah, enhanced economic activity and development and a direct reduction in poppy propagation.
3d CAG’s mission is to conduct activities which enhance the relationship between the military and host nations through application of civil affairs specialty skills in areas normally the responsibility of civil governments.
The Bronze Star is the ninth highest award in the U.S. Armed Forces.