SWANSBORO, N.C. --
Students attending Queen's Creek Elementary School here, received a visit from a few Marines during a field day held, June 8.
The field day is held as an annual event for the kids to participate in physical activities such as relay races, tire rolling and shoe throwing. Parents and family help run the event, but Marines from 2nd Assault Amphibian Battalion, 2nd Marine Division, chose to take part in helping out.
“We have this event every year, and always try to get the Marines to come help out,” said Lynne Mixon, a teacher with the school. “A lot of our students have military parents, and they enjoy seeing them out here in their uniforms.”
Mixon and the students took the day’s activities to show their appreciation to the Marines.
“We had the kids in the multi-purpose building, and the Marines came in. The children stood at attention and recited the pledge and sang the national anthem,” Mixon said. “On the way out onto the field, the children lined up to hug and high-five them as they walked by.”
A total of 15 Marines came to assist with Gunnery Sgt. Justin Smith, a platoon sergeant with 2nd Assault Amphibian Battalion, whose children attend the school.
“I have two daughters that go to the school, so I really wanted the chance to help out,” Smith said. “I got my Marines together and asked them if they wanted to volunteer.”
His Marines jumped at the chance to assist him.
“Our (gunnery sergeant) asked for volunteers for the kids’ field day,” said Lance Cpl. Jacob Carr, an amphibious assault vehicle crewman with the battalion. “A group of us really wanted to attend, and we planned to be here about a month ago.”
The importance of helping the children in their day of fun activities was shared by Carr and his fellow Marines.
“It is a good feeling to interact with the kids here, and let them know we are here to help them,” said Pfc. Zach Strothkamp, an amphibious assault vehicle crewman with the battalion. “Some of the kids know who we are, and some do not. I just hope they can see us and [we have a] good influence [on them.]”