(This article appeared in the Novmeber 12, 1999 issue of the
Observation Post, the base newspaper for Twentynine Palms,
1stLt Jason D. Grose
1st Tank Bn Adjutant
Fourteen Marines from 7th Engineers Support Battalion returned
to Camp Pendleton, leaving a legacy that the Marines at 1st
Tank Battalion will not soon forget.
For eight days, the 7th ESB Marines were busy building a
pavilion that included 8 tables covered by a wood-framed
structure near the barracks that house most of 1st Tanks’ Marines.
The engineers also build a horseshoe pit, 2 barbeques grills,
and a volleyball court near the site between the Battalion’s
grinder, Tank’s messhall, and building 1610.
LTCOL Richard V. Mancini, 1st Tank Battalion’s Commanding
Officer, is quick to point out the impetus of this project.
“The project was the result of the Officers’ and Staff Noncommissioned
Officers’ effort to improve the habitability of our Marines
and Sailors of 1st Tank Battalion. Having the option to cook
a steak or a dog or two with your fellow Marines and Sailors,
along with some good healthy fun, does wonders for the camaraderie
of our unit.”
Captain Gary L. Bash Jr., 1st Tank Battalion’s S-4 Officer,
thinks that the 7th ESB Marines deserve credit for their hard
“Their hard work will have a positive impact on the Marines
of this Battalion for years to come,” stated Bash.
Designed by 1stLt Naresh Rajan of 7th ESB, the project was
overseen by 2ndLt Frederick J. McElman, also of 7th ESB.
In just eight days, he and his 13 Marines transformed an uneven
sandlot into the 20’ X 40’ pavilion while most of the Tank Battalion
were out in the field preparing for the upcoming Steel Knight
“7th Engineer Support Battalion, under the command of LTCOL
Flowers did a truly noteworthy job in helping 1st Tank Battalion.,”
Mancini said. “Without their efforts and can-do spirit, this
little oasis in our desert paradise would not have come to fruition.
1st Tank battalion truly appreciates the hard work and spirit
shown by our Marine engineers,” Mancini said.
The Marines of 7th ESB included:
2ndLt Frederick J. McElman
SSGT Reymond Garza
CPL Justin D. Morgan
CPL Scott A. Robinson
CPL Kenneth L. Rodgers
CPL Edwin W. Morse
PFC Patrick J. Tippett
PFC Juan C. Negron
PFC Eric R. Wackt
PFC Darren A. Graham
CPL Eric V. Perez
LCPL Donald L. Ehle
LCPL Matthew R. Levasseur
LCPL Carlos Estrada