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Thunderbolts visit Greek Embassy

By Cpl. Rubin J. Tan | | April 23, 2012

Marine Fighter Attack Squadron 251 visited the U.S. Embassy in Athens, Greece on March 30.

The Thunderbolts had 21 participants who vis­ited the embassy to learn about Marine security guard duty. The Marines toured a variety of de­partments and met Dan­iel Bennett Smith, U.S. Ambassador to Greece.

“Marines should be excited to learn more about such a prestigious special duty assignment,” said Sgt. Francis Garcia, VMFA-251 career planner and coordinator for the trip. “Just imagine be­ing one of a few Marines tasked to safeguard our nation’s classified infor­mation while in a foreign country.”

Marine Security Guard Duty provides a 32-month tour at three different em­bassies around the world. Their main mission is to provide security and miti­gate threats the embassy could possibly face.

The Athens detachment presented the squadron with a barbeque and re­freshments.

Cpl. Dale Smith, a Ma­rine security guard in Athens, gave a presenta­tion to the visiting Ma­rines about the duty and the amount of readiness required by Marines.

“Visiting an embassy is something I never had the chance to do before participating in Marine Security Guard duty and I believe this will spark a new interest in others,” said Smith, a native of Kansas City, Kan.

Marines at embassies are often secluded from other Marines due to the location of detachments, and commands transi­tioning through countries rarely plan trips for their Marines to visit embas­sies.

Given the opportunity to experience the life­style of a Marine security guard first hand, Garcia hopes to continue us­ing this career retention tool on future Marines to show them all aspects of the Corps.