The Commander Defence Force, Commodore Raymond King, presented the Bahamas National Flag to family members of deceased Marines on March 8, 2021 at Defence Headquarters, John F. Kennedy Drive.
Also included with the flags were ceremonial ribbons and medals, which were worn by the Marines while serving as a member of the Royal Bahamas Defence Force. In attendance were family members of the late Chief Petty Officers Leroy Whylly and Solomon Hall, and Petty Officers Kevin Moss and Kendrick Sands.
Among their many accomplishments, both Chief Petty Officer Whylly and Petty Officer Sands served as members of the CARICOM contingents, which served with the Peacekeeping Mission in Haiti in between 1994-1996. Chief Petty Officer Hall played an integral part as member of the Safety Stores section of the Engineering Department, and Petty Officer Moss was instrumental in the initial formation of the RBDF Band.
Whilst thanking the grieving families for the services of the Marines and offering sincerest condolences, the Commander Defence Force presented each family with the Bahamas National Flag, known in the military as the Jack, which draped the coffins. This gesture is symbolic of honour and recognition that Officers and Marines contributed in service to their country.
On receiving their tokens of appreciation, the family members reiterated that they were grateful that their loved ones were given the opportunity to serve their country, and the gesture of love given to them was well-received.
The Bahamian National Flag, known symbolically in the military as the Jack, is also ceremonially hoisted and flown aboard all Defence Force craft and satellite bases as a reminder of love and service to country, and our solemn oath to guard our heritage.
Just as the flag waves on lustily so does the memories of our fallen soldiers linger in on in our hearts and minds.