MARINE CORPS BASE CAMP LEJEUNE, N.C. – 2nd Marine Logistics Group reactivated 2nd Landing Support Battalion in accordance with the 38th Commandant’s Planning Guidance and force design restructuring in an activation ceremony here on October 16, 2020.
After more than 40 years of dormancy, the battalion was “stood-up” again to support aerial delivery and beach landing operations in support of tactical logistics missions for 2nd Marine Logistics Group and II Marine Expeditionary Force. The unit was designed to absorb its capabilities from 2nd Transportation Battalion, a unit also recently restructured as a result of force design modernization efforts taking place across the Marine Corps.
“The re-establishment of 2nd Landing Support Battalion comes during a time of significant transformation within the Marine Corps. Small landing support elements will be vitally important to enable throughput and sustainment of distributed forces,” said Lt. Col. Randall L. Nickel, commanding officer of 2nd Landing Support Battalion. “Whether this is accomplished in the littorals via amphibious ships or via aerial delivery, landing support to the Fleet Marine Force is essential to ensure mission accomplishment.”
Nickel was wearing the red patch, which dates back to World War II, on his eight-point cover during the ceremony. The patches, according to the Marine Corps, were used to differentiate support personnel on the beaches from grunts moving inland on assaults.
"This confusion was so apparent, by accounts, that some landing support Marines headed inland with the infantry and some infantrymen stayed behind on the beach," a Marine Corps news release states. "The solution, a simple, red cloth square to modify their uniforms.
"We'll be seeing more of the red patch," a Marine Corps news release on the reactivation states. "In line with the commandant's planning guidance, Marine Logistics Groups across the Corps reactivated their landing support battalions after a 40-year hiatus. This brings all landing support specialists under one roof."
2nd Landing Support Battalion Organization
2nd Landing Support Battalion consists of a Landing Support Company, a Beach and Terminal Operations Company, a Landing Support Equipment Company, and a Headquarters and Service Company.
The companies will be at the forefront of the Corps’ renewed focus on expeditionary advanced base operations, a war-fighting concept enabling a persistent forward naval presence that has long been the hallmark of U.S. expeditionary forces.
“As the Marine Corps focuses on becoming proficiently trained and equipped as a naval expeditionary force-in-readiness, 2nd Landing Support Battalion will provide a critical link between the Navy and Marine Corps capabilities for dispersed maritime operations and the distribution of logistics across the operating areas,” said Sgt. Maj. Victor C. Mancini, sergeant major of 2nd Landing Support Battalion. “The Marines and Sailors of this battalion are excited to be part of the force transformation.”
The unit has a storied history and served in multiple overseas campaigns over the past century, to include supporting combat operations in World War II.
2nd Landing Support Battalion was first activated on November 17, 1941 at Camp Elliott, California as Shore Party Detachment, 2nd Marine Division.
In February 1942, the unit was re-designated as 2nd Pioneer Battalion. It would go on to support major combat operations during World War II in Guadalcanal, Tarawa, Saipan, Tinian, and Okinawa.
Following the end of World War II, the unit would undergo a variety of redesignations and relocations over the decades to come as the unit continued supporting Marine Corps amphibious operations around the world before finally being deactivated on April 30, 1979.
2nd Landing Support Battalion was formally re-activated on October 16, 2020 and was assigned to Combat Logistics Regiment 2, 2nd Marine Logistics Group.
The unit’s honors include: Presidential Unit Citation streamer; Asiatic Pacific Campaign streamer with one Silver Star and one Bronze Star; World War II Victory streamer; Navy Occupation Service streamer with Asia clasp; National Defense Service Streamer with three Bronze Stars; and the Global War on Terrorism Service streamer.
The mission of 2nd Landing Support Battalion is to provide throughput support for II Marine Expeditionary Force and other Marine Air-Ground Task Force operations in order to enable the distribution of equipment, personnel, and supplies by air, ground, and sea.
EDITOR'S NOTE: "After more than 40 years of dormancy..." refers to the re-activation of the battalion's command lineage to align with the early history of the units that preceded 2nd Landing Support Battalion. The 2nd Landing Support Battalion active from 1979 to 2000 evolved to later become Combat Logistics Regiment 2 and remains directly affiliated with the established CLR command lineage.
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