Nine U.S. Marines with Lima Company, 3d Battalion, 2d Marine Regiment, 2d Marine Division, were awarded for their service while providing security for the USNS Comfort during the COVID-19 relief effort as a part of ‘Task Force New York City’. The awards ceremony took place at Camp Lejeune, North Carolina on June 16, 2020.
The list of awardees, and their corresponding awards, follows:
- Gunnery Sgt. Thomas Hebner, company gunnery sergeant – Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal
- 1st Lt. Gerhard Vanarkel, platoon commander – Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal
- Sgt Austin Loppe, squad Leader – Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal (in part for life-saving actions)
- Cpl. Richard Nable, team leader – Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal
- Cpl. Hunter Dillan, team Leader – Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal
- Cpl. Cole Johnson, team leader – Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal
- Lance Cpl. Colton Flach, rifleman – Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal (in part for life-saving actions)
- 1stLt Dan Linfante, Communication Strategy and Operation Officer – Meritorious Mast
- SSgt Andrew Herrera, Platoon Sergeant – Meritorious Mast
“I’m proud of my Marines and everything that they did,” said Gunnery Sgt. Thomas Hebner, company gunnery sergeant, Lima Company, 3d Battalion, 2d Marine Regiment. “Honestly, I just did my job, and I was actually quite surprised that I was awarded.”
For additional imagery, please visit the 2d Marine Division DVIDS link below. For additional details on Lance Cpl. Flach’s and Sgt. Loppe’s awards, which involved life-saving actions, please see the story written by U.S. Navy 2nd Fleet, also linked below.
Sgt. Austin Loppe, a squad leader with Lima Company (Co.), 3rd Battalion, 2nd Marine Regiment, 2d Marine Division, receives a Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal for his role in Operation Gotham from Capt. Peter Hofinga, the company commander of Lima Co., on Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, June 16, 2020. Lima Company Marines earned the awards for their efforts in New York City assisting the hospital ship USNS Comfort (T-AH 20) during the COVID-19 pandemic. (U.S. Marine Corps photo by Sgt. Stormy Mendez)
U.S. Navy 2nd Fleet Story: https://www.navy.mil/submit/display.asp?story_id=112637
For more information about the ceremony, please reach out to 2nd Lt. Kayla Olsen at (910) 451-2066 or firstname.lastname@example.org.