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Down East Chapter Hosts Awards Ceremony

Left to right – HMC Paul Miethker, USN (Ret), Chairman Down East Chapter; SgtMaj Michael Rooney, USMC (Ret) Chapter Treasurer; MGySgt Paul Levesque, USMC (Ret) (Recipient); MajGen Walter Lee Miller, Jr. USMC (Recipient); SgtMaj Paul W. Siverson, USMC (Ret), Chairman NCOA Board of Directors NCOA; and SgtMaj Ihor Sywanyk, USMC (Ret).

The NCOA Down East Chapter #906 recently hosted the 25th Annual SgtMaj C. A. “Mack” McKinney Awards Ceremony at Sywanyk’s Scarlett and Gold Traditions in Jacksonville, NC.

The 2017 recipients were Major General Walter Lee Miller, Jr., Commanding General, II Marine Expeditionary Force, and Master Gunnery Sergeant Paul Levesque, USMC (Ret).   Down East Chapter Chairman Paul Miethker, a retired Navy chief hospital corpsman, presented the awards to Miller and Levesque before a crowd of military officials and veterans.

Levesque retired from the Marine Corps in 1995, serving as the communication-electronics maintenance chief and platoon leader with the 8th Comm Battalion, II MEF.  After retirement, Levesque became involved in several local veteran organizations including the Fleet Reserve Association, Veterans of Foreign Wars, Disabled American Veterans and Rolling Thunder Inc. Chapter NC-5.

Miller was commissioned in the Marine Corps in 1980 after graduating from Texas A&M University. According to information provided by event organizers, Miller has deployed in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom, Enduring Freedom and to Japan, Turkey, Kosovo, Djibouti, Kenya and the Republic of Panama.   The major general currently serves as the commanding general of II Marine Expeditionary Force.

Members of the Marine Corps League Swansboro Detachment #1407 were also presented with a Certificate of Appreciation by the Down East Chapter, which was accepted by Marine Corps League Detachment Commandant Tim Manchester, a retired sergeant major.

The McKinney Award was named after Marine Sgt. Maj. C. A. “Mack” McKinney, who retired in 1971 and worked to establish legislature benefiting the military community. The award is presented to military members who have demonstrated professionalism, dedication and service to the United States and its military over a sustained period of time.’s also presented to members of the local community who have demonstrated a strong support for the military community. The “Mack” McKinney Award was established in 1992 and was first presented in January 1992.

Visit the NCOA Down East Chapter’s Facebook page to view additional photos from the ceremony:

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