NAVAL SUPPORT FACILITY INDIAN HEAD, Md. --
It’s not every day a Marine can pass down his legacy to his son, but that’s exactly what happened at a recent retirement ceremony aboard Naval Support Facility Indian Head, Md., July 9, 2009.
In a passing of traditions, Lance Cpl. Bradley Cox, an F/A-18 Super Hornet power line mechanic with Marine Fighter Attack Squadron (All-Weather) 224, was on hand to participate in the retirement of his Maj. Stan Bacon, the operations officer for Headquarters and Service Company, Chemical Biological Incident Response Force, II Marine Expeditionary Force.
Cox participated in “Old Glory,” where Marines from all ranks pass the American Flag to the retiree. Cox traveled to Maryland from his duty station in Beaufort, S.C., to participate in the ceremony.
“I want to be just like my dad,” Cox proudly proclaimed. “He is a man that is hard but very fair.”
“No matter the case, he is always there,” he continued. “He has respect, he has tact and he has all the leadership traits of a Marine and then some. He is more then just my father; he is my idol.”
Growing up, Cox said he had something better than Superman for a father – he had a Marine.
“My dad always taught me ‘family first’ no matter what, and the most moving part about that statement was the Marines he worked for were his family as well,” Cox said. “With all of that on his plate, he was still able to make me the man and the Marine I am today.”
Bacon’s long and distinguished career yielded him many opportunities, to include service in Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm and in Iraq’s Al Anbar province during Operation Iraqi Freedom.
Still, he said his greatest joy and accomplishment is being a father to his children.
“I am most proud of being a father to my four wonderful kids,” Bacon explained. “Some of the best compliments I get are when people don’t realize we’re a blended family because it’s so transparent.”
Bacon said being the father of a Marine “is tough but rewarding,” because he knew the challenges his son would face entering the Marine Corps.
Cox and Bacon share special bonds as both father and son and Marine.
“My biological father was never really there for me, but [Bacon] has always been there and that is why I have always wished that he was my father by blood,” Cox explained.
Passing the baton to his son, Bacon passed down his legacy to someone who aspires to be just like his dad.
For more information on CBIRF, visit the unit’s web site http://www.marines.mil/units/marforcom/iimef/cbirf/Pages/default.aspx .