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2nd Battalion, 1st Marines

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2nd Battalion, 1st Marines (2/1) is an infantry battalion in the United States Marine Corps based out of Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton, California. Nicknamed "The Professionals," the battalion consists of approximately 1,200 Marines and Sailors. Normally they fall under the command of 1st Marine Regiment and the 1st Marine Division.

2nd Battalion, 1st Marines
2-1 Logo.svg
2nd Battalion, 1st Marines insignia
  • August 1, 1922 – July 20, 1924
  • March 1, 1941 – October 31, 1947
  • August 4, 1950 – January 24, 1989
  • September 9, 1994 – present
Country United States
Branch USMC
Type Light Infantry
Role Locate, close with and destroy the enemy with fire and maneuver
Size 1,200
Part of 1st Marine Regiment
1st Marine Division
Garrison/HQ Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton
Nickname(s) The Professionals, Ghost Battalion
Motto(s) No Better Friend, No Worse Enemy Gunsmoke

World War II

Korean War

Vietnam War
War on Terror

LtCol John M. Hunt
James M. Masters, Sr.
Edwin A. Pollock
Archie Van Winkle
William G. Leftwich, Jr.
Peter Pace


Subordinate unitsEdit


  • Activated August 1, 1922, at Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, as the 2nd Battalion, 1st Regiment and assigned to the 2d Brigade.
  • Participated in the occupation of the Dominican Republic, Deactivated July 20, 1924

World War IIEdit

Two Marines, Davis P. Hargraves with Thompson submachine gun and Gabriel Chavarria with BAR, of 2nd Battalion, 1st Marines, advance on Wana Ridge on May 18, 1945.

Korean War & early 1960sEdit

Vietnam WarEdit

  • Deployed during November 1965 to the Republic of Vietnam, and assigned to the 3rd Marine Division, Fleet Marine Force
  • Participated in the War in Vietnam, November 1965 – May 1971,
  • Detached during April 1971 from the 1st Marine Division, and reassigned to the 3rd Marine Amphibious Brigade, Fleet Marine Force
  • Relocated during June 1971 to Camp Pendleton, CA, and reassigned to the 1st Marine Division, Fleet Marine Force

Post War and the 1980sEdit

  • Participated during April – May 1975 in Operation New Arrivals, the relocation of refugees from Indochina
  • Participated in the Battalion rotation between the 3rd Marine Division on Okinawa and Divisions stationed in the United States during the 1980s
  • Deactivated January 24, 1989
  • Reactivated September 9, 1994, at Camp Pendleton, CA, and assigned to the 1st Marine Division.

Global War on TerrorismEdit

Marines from Echo Company passing the body of an alleged Iraqi insurgent during the First Battle of Fallujah.

As part of the 15th Marine Expeditionary Unit, the battalion deployed to Kuwait in February 2003, and participated in the invasion of Iraq in March 2003. The battalion deployed in March 2004, to Fallujah, Iraq and took part in Operation Vigilant Resolve. They returned to Iraq in 2005 with the 13th Marine Expeditionary Unit and engaged in combat operations during Operation Steel Curtain in Husaybah, Karabilah, and New Ubaydi, and Operation Iron Hammer in Hit. The battalion deployed to Okinawa to serve as the Ground Combat Unit for the 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit from January 1, 2007, until January 1, 2008. The battalion deployed to Iraq in January 2009 and returned in August of the same year.

The battalion deployed to Afghanistan in October 2010 through May 15, 2011, in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. They operated in the Garmsir District, Helmand Province. In June 2012, the battalion returned to Okinawa as the Ground Combat Element for the 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit. In March 2014, 2/1 deployed as the Ground Combat Element of the 11th MEU.

Marines with Golf Company, Battalion Landing Team 2nd Battalion, 1st Marines, 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit, conduct daily morning section physical training on the flight deck of the USS Makin Island during Amphibious Squadron Marine Expeditionary Unit Integration (PMINT), off the coast of San Diego, California, in April 2014. (U.S. Marine Corps photo by Gunnery Sgt. Rome M. Lazarus/Released)

Unit awardsEdit

A unit citation or commendation is an award bestowed upon an organization for the action cited. Members of the unit who participated in said actions are allowed to wear on their uniforms the awarded unit citation. 2/1 has been presented with the following awards:

Ribbon Unit Award
Presidential Unit Citation with one Silver and four Bronze Stars
Navy Unit Commendation with two Bronze Stars
Meritorious Unit Commendation with four Bronze Stars
Marine Corps Expeditionary Medal
American Defense Service Medal with one Bronze Star
  Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal with one Silver and one Bronze Star
World War II Victory Medal
Navy Occupation Service Medal with Asia clasp
China Service Medal
National Defense Service Medal with three Bronze Stars
Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal
Vietnam Service Medal with two Silver and three Bronze Stars
Korean Presidential unit Citation
Vietnam Cross of Gallantry with Palm Streamer
Vietnam Meritorious Unit Citation Civil Action Medal
Afghanistan Campaign Medal with one Bronze Star
Iraq Campaign Medal with two Bronze Stars
Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal
Global War on Terrorism Service Medal
Korea Defense Service Medal

Notable former membersEdit

See alsoEdit

External linksEdit


  This article incorporates public domain material from websites or documents of the United States Marine Corps.