I have been to my fair share of promotion ceremonies. As a Marine Corps spouse of more than 20 years I’ve been to a lot of ceremonies; promotions, retirements, change of commands. They never get old. I absolutely love the pomp and circumstance that comes with these special military moments. As I look back on my husbands career, I recall that only the top dogs had photographers present at their ceremonies. Which is why I jump at any opportunity to photograph any promotion ceremony. Or any other special military event. Every service member no matter what their rank or station should have amazing photos of the accomplishments they have earned.
I love the Marine Corps community! The connections we make as we move around to each duty station ties us together. A friend you meet in 29 palms was stationed with a friend they met in Okinawa who ends up being the new friend you made when you photographed their promotion ceremony. Did you catch all those connections? I’m sure the other services are similar but I just love how each duty station brings a new wave of friends and connections made. So I received a text from Stephanie a sweet friend and client of mine. She informed me that she had referred me to a friend of hers looking to find a photographer for a promotion ceremony. My first reaction… I’m in! Next thing you know I have an email from Elisabet, Captain in the United States Marine Corps who was gifting this photography session to Gloria, soon to be Warrant Officer Groen. What an awesome gift right!?
“Some people work an entire lifetime and wonder if they ever made a difference to the world. But the Marines don’t have that problem.” – Ronald Regan
Trying to find my client was like playing the military version of Where’s Waldo. My only saving grace was that I was searching for a female. Talk about the Few & Proud. The general ceremony was nice, short, sweet and to the point. Then we moved over to the Molly Marine Statue for a private pinning ceremony with friends and family. As I stood back in the distance watching this ceremony take place I found myself tearing up again. The time, dedication and sacrifice endured to climb the ranks in this military organization was not lost on me. What an honor to not only be present but to capture this moment for this Marine and her family. A moment to cherish for generations. Seriously, think of the story she will be able to tell her grandchildren and the photos she will have to help share it. That’s cool! This is why I love my job!
Congratulations Warrant Officer Gloria Groen on your achievement. Laying down those chevrons and picking up those bars as you become a leader of Marines is an awesome accomplishment and responsibility. May God continue to bless you and the United States Marine Corps. OORAH!
Semper Fi, Devil Dog!