BERWICK-UPON-TWEED, England -- Since the conclusion of World War I, the United Kingdom has come together to
celebrate Remembrance Day, an event honoring service members who’ve paid the
highest price to protect their country.
Approximately 25 U.S. Marines
with 2nd Intelligence Battalion participated in a Remembrance Day memorial
ceremony and parade with various armed services across the U.K. Nov. 8, 2015.
The event was an opportunity to commemorate the fallen in wars where both
nations fought alongside one another.
“It’s important having the Marines
with us, because it signifies the blood we’ve shed together” said a British Army
regimental sergeant major. “It’s important not only to train with our allies,
but to share remembrance with them also.”
The ceremony began at a church,
before the servicemen and women marched to the city’s War Memorial. Members of
different units and associations laid Poppy Wreaths upon the Memorial,
symbolizing the bloodshed from previous wars.
“I’ve offered to serve in
the military to sacrifice my life if necessary to protect our country, what we
believe in and what we stand for,” said Marine Lance Cpl. Samantha Copeland, an
intelligence analyst with 2nd Intelligence Battalion. “So to commemorate those
who have done that, it’s an honor for me.”
More than 60 Marines partnered
with British soldiers for Exercise Phoenix Odyssey II in Edinburgh, U.K., Oct.
26-Nov. 6, where the forces collaborated to improve on joint intelligence
operations and build basic military skillsets forged on Camp Lejeune, N.C. in
2014. Though the exercise was only training, the service members understand
there could come a time where the two nations conduct real-world operations
focused on destroying a hostile enemy.
“It’s important to remember those
who have gone before us because we wouldn’t be where we are today if not for
them,” said Copeland. “They serve as a good example for when it comes time where
we may need to put our lives on the line, or to exhibit that courage. We can
remember that they’ve done it.”