Photo Information

U.S. Marines with 2d Marine Division coach youth lacrosse players in Topsail, North Carolina, April 20, 2024. Volunteering with sports teams helps Marines engage with and contribute to the local communities by mentoring it’s youth. (U.S. Marine Corps photo by Cpl. Max Arellano)

Photo by Cpl. Max Arellano

On and Off the Field:

1 May 2024 | Cpl. Max Arellano PEO Land Systems

Marines with HQBN, 2d MARDIV volunteer with the local Topsail lacrosse youth three days out of the week every spring. For both these Marines and the youth, lacrosse is a shared passion that binds each individual together with a common purpose. On April 20, 2024, the Marines volunteered to help support the girls and boys league to see which team would face off in the upcoming tournaments at the end of the season.

“Marines have an inherent desire to serve which is in their genes. All Marines volunteer to serve others in a manner which exposes them to hardship and risk; that type of selflessness is amazing. Military service is a great contribution at the macro level, while volunteerism in the community is service at a micro level. Those who already have the propensity and ability to serve should seek opportunities to assist a town, a school, a fund-raising drive or a local athletics team as mechanisms for improving our communities. At Topsail Youth Lacrosse, our avenue for improvement is positive life lessons through the game of Lacrosse. We are fortunate to have amazing kids, coaches and families, many of whom are Marines and Marine Families, who promote our tenets of fun, fundamentals and respect.” - Lt. Col. Paul Lowman the executive officer of HQBN, 2d MARDIV.

When asked how they felt about mentoring and volunteering the local youth, Marines described their service to the community as fulfilling. Witnessing the youth grow as individuals and in the Lacrosse sport, they are reminded of the character building lessons that come with failures and triumph.

“Interacting with the local community and working with the children is a great experience to be a part of, you observe them working together, learning valuable life skills like leadership and teamwork. These interactions foster a sense of trust and admiration between the Marines and the community, breaking down barriers and building bridges of enlightenment”, said 2nd Lt. Jalen Harris, an assistant supply officer with HQBN, 2d MARDIV.

The commitment of Marines to serve their local communities through volunteering and teaching youth lacrosse not only benefits the next generation of athletes but also fosters personal growth and development within the Marines themselves. By imparting valuable skills, instilling discipline, and serving as positive role models, Marines contribute to the well-being and success of their communities. Through this volunteer work, Marines embody the core values of honor, courage, and commitment, enhancing their own sense of purpose and fulfillment. Ultimately, their dedication to giving back and shaping the future generations of leaders not only strengthens the bond between Marines and their communities but also enriches their lives, making them better individuals both on and off the field.