Story Number: NNS140207-29Release Date: 2/7/2014 11:42:00 PM
By Mass Communications Specialist 2nd Class Jonathan Correa
ANNAPOLIS, Md. (NNS) -- The Commandant of the Marine Corps spoke at a dinner and reception for the 270 Naval Academy midshipmen of the Class of 2014 selected to enter the U.S. Marine Corps, Feb. 6.
During his speech, Gen. James F. Amos told the story of 2011 Medal of Honor recipient Marine Sgt. Dakota Meyer, who also attended the event.
Meyer received the medal in recognition of his heroic actions during the Battle of Ganjgal on Sept. 8, 2009, in Kunar Province, Afghanistan.
While under heavy enemy fire, Meyer helped evacuate two dozen Afghan soldiers from an ambush and recovered the bodies of four U.S. team members who had been cut off from their fellows.
"The story about Sgt. Dakota Meyer shows you the type of men and women you will be leading," Amos said to the midshipmen. "If you don't take anything else out of what I've talked about tonight, this is about honor and character. This is what I need of you. This is what your fellow Marines expect of you."
For Midshipman 1st Class Colleen Randolph, selected to be a Marine ground officer, Amos' remarks affirmed her desire to be a Marine.
"What struck me most about his speech was that he continually stressed the importance of those enlisted we are about to be given the opportunity to lead," added Randolph. "Because the enlisted that we lead and the country that we serve deserve nothing less than our best."
Marines from around the Naval Academy and fleet came to support the new future Marine Corps officers and to answer any question they may have about the fleet.
"I was floored by the number of Marine Corps officers in attendance who went out of their way to celebrate with us tonight," said Randolph. "Not only is this a testament to the Class of 2014 but to the Marine Corps officers on the yard and their positive impact on our class."
Midshipmen interested in the Marine Corps must meet and exceed the physical, mental and moral requirements expected of a Marine Corps officer.
After several physical screenings during the midshipmens' second-class year, Marines from around the Yard meet and interview each candidate.
Selected midshipmen attend Leatherneck summer training in Quantico, Va., or a Marine Air-Ground Task Force training command.
"I am beyond thrilled to have been selected for a commission as a Marine Corps officer," said Randolph. "It's as though you are a receiving an invitation to the world's greatest club, a new family even, and I cannot wait to have an impact."