MARINE CORPS AIR STATION CHERRY POINT, N.C. -- Sgt. Maj. Larry J. Harrington, the Marine Transport Squadron 1 sergeant major, was awarded the Bronze Star Medal during a ceremony at the squadron’s hangar June 24. Harrington was granted the award for the Espirit de Corps and devotion to duty he displayed leading his Marines from the front while serving as the sergeant major of 1st Battalion, 6th Marines, Regimental Combat Team 6, 1st Marine Division (Forward), II Marine Expeditionary Force (Forward), in Afghanistan. The battle-tested warrior said he was humbled to be bestowed with such an honor.
“The Bronze Star in my opinion represents all the heroes I have had the honor of serving with,” said Harrington. “Had it not been for the hard charging warriors I worked with, this would not exist. They inspired the desire of continued hard work and motivation.”
His actions both on and off the battlefield proved to be a testament to the type of dedicated leader he was to the 1,000 Marines and Sailors under his charge. On a daily basis, Harrington was in harm’s way while participating in vehicle and dismounted patrols in Marjah, Upper Sangin and Kajaki, often positioning himself alongside his Marines facing enemy threats.
The sergeant major said he was motivated not only by the Marines he worked with, but by the Marines in history who helped pave the way for the generations to follow. “1/6 is one of the most legendary battalions in the Marine Corps,” he said. “It started in Belleau Woods, France and the legacy continues in Afghanistan. My time spent with the warriors and heroes is the most profound time I have had in my career. The French fourragère is burned in my spirit and a legacy written in blood forever runs through my veins. “ In addition to performing the tasks of a leader, like maintaining accountability of the service members assigned to the battalion and providing leadership and guidance to service members supporting Operation Eastern Storm, Harrington worked diligently to forge bonds and strengthen relationships with Afghan National Security Forces. Harrington said his days with the battalion will forever be etched in his memory, and he is proud of the accomplishments of the entire unit. “My time with 1/6 makes me proud to be a Marine and a citizen of this great nation,” he said. “Marines and Sailors from different walks of life coming together to fight an enemy is who was battle hardened over centuries of fighting, and we [1/6] took the fight to them and destroyed them. I’m proud.”