U.S. Marine Detachment vets mentor next generation

In the blue shirts are ‘poolies’ enrolled in The Delayed Entry Program out of the west Bronx’s Marine Corps Recruiting Office.The five individuals standing in the rear with black shirts are U.S. Marine Corps recruiters.
Photo courtesy of Michael McNerney

The borough’s only detachment of a U.S. Marine Corps veterans’ organization, Marine Corps League Yankee Detachment 255, hosted an educational seminar for new recruits who have committed to entering the Marines.

The event took place on Saturday, May 11 at the Samuel Young American Legion Post #620.

The recruitment meeting was held in conjunction with representatives from the borough’s two U.S. Marine recruiting centers at 2167 Westchester Avenue and 2488 Grand Concourse, said Michael McNerney, a member of Marine Corps League Yankee Detachment 255 who spearheaded the effort.

Most were young people, 17- to 20-years-old, who plan to enter the corps within the next year, he said.

McNerney said that the goal of the mentoring exercise was for members of the detachment to share first-hand knowledge, offer advice and provide perspectives on what to do, what not to do, and how the Marine experience can jettison their future success.

“We are trying to pass on our experiences so they can deal with it, because boot camp can be stressful to say the least,” said Owen Mangan, Detachment 255 commander. “We will be speaking about what to do and what not to do.”

The young men and women that are part of the Marine Delayed Entry Program have already been found qualified, mentally and physically, for service, said McNerney.

Event organizer and junior vice commandant Michael McNerney of The Marine Corps League Yankee Detachment # 255 served as master of ceremonies.
Photos are Courtesy of Staff Sergeant Shakima DePrince, United States Marine Corps.

Many will have never been away from home before they leave for U.S Marine training, said McNerney.

“A lot of these kids come from immigrant parents or are inner city youth,” said McNerney. “This may be the first time they are meeting a U.S. Marine Corps veteran, and this event is a way for Marine veterans to impart knowledge of our experiences to these fine young people.”

The U.S. Marine Corps hasn’t changed all that much over time, so listening to the experiences of veterans should prove helpful to the young people in their future of service, said McNerney.

A barbecue followed the event.

U.S. Marine Staff Sergeant Trevor Nakaahiki, based out of the west Bronx’s recruiting station, said that 50 to 60 recruits who have already committed to basic training at Parris Island, SC attended.

Marine Corps League Yankee Detachment 255 regularly meets at the Samuel Young Post and is open to all former U.S. Marines.

Marine Corps League Yankee Detachment member and World War II veteran Jerome Vessichio shares his experience and advice with these future U.S Marine recruits.
Photos are Courtesy of Staff Sergeant Shakima DePrince, United States Marine Corps.

Reach Reporter Patrick Rocchio at (718) 260–4597. E-mail him at procchio@schnepsmedia.com. Follow him on Twitter @patrickfrocchio.

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