March 30, 2024

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With the support of Marine Security Guard Detachment Beirut, generations of Americans will have the opportunity to reflect upon a key artifact in U.S. Marine Corps history.

The story began in June 2023, when the Marines and U.S. Embassy colleagues hosted Mr. Michael Gaines and Dr. Mireille Rebeiz for a visit to Beirut. Mr. Gaines is the surviving brother of Cpl. William Gaines Jr., who lost his life in the Oct. 23, 1983, suicide bombing of the 1st Battalion, 8th Marines barracks in Beirut. Dr. Rebeiz is a Lebanese American and survivor of the early-1980s Lebanese Civil War.

Armed with historical research provided by the Marine Security Guard Detachment Commander, Gunnery Sgt. Deven Turner, Mr. Gaines and Dr. Rebeiz visited the site of the Beirut barracks bombing and discovered a makeshift flagpole that had been erected by the surviving Marines after the original flagpole was destroyed in the blast. The flagpole, nicknamed "Resilience" by the Marines of Detachment Beirut, was temporarily displayed at the U.S. Embassy compound, and served as a centerpiece of the Embassy remembrance ceremony to mark the 40th anniversary of the barracks bombing on Oct. 23, 2023.

With the support of the Marines of Detachment Beirut, the flagpole was recently relocated to the U.S., where it will ultimately be installed at the Beirut Peacekeepers Memorial Tower (currently under construction) at the William R. Gaines Jr. Veterans Memorial Park in Port Charlotte, Florida.

To read more about this momentous accomplishment, you can check out other articles and news stories here:


Florida Weekly Story

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