ARLINGTON, Va. --
Col. Paul Weaver, the commanding officer of Marine Air Control Group 48, 4th Marine Aircraft Wing, Marine Forces Reserve, represented the families of his Illinois-based unit when he was presented with the 2016 Department of Defense Reserve Family Readiness Award at the Pentagon, March 24, 2017.
A commemorative plaque and framed certificate was given to a single unit from each of the seven Reserve and National Guard components of the Department of Defense for their dedication and support of local families.
“Every member in the Marine Corps, either on active duty or reserve, is an incredible family member,” said Weaver. “Receiving this award shows the strength of the families I have.”
Deployed worldwide, Reserve Marines serve in many critical locations and family readiness has been a key component of maintaining mission readiness and a vital support network.
Family readiness programs are one of the most valuable things we have as we get ready for a deployment, said Weaver. With a strong and viable family readiness program, it tells the Marines that their families back home are being taken care of, so they can focus on the mission.
Knowing that your family is being taken care of boosts the morale of the Marines while on deployment, said Weaver. Having other families around to support each other is crucial while Marines are away.
The family readiness programs are a reflection of the community that we serve in, said Weaver. There wouldn’t be any strong programs if not for the families and the time they put in.
“The existence of any program relies on the volunteers,” said Weaver. “The families aren’t required to come out here to help, but they volunteer their time and energy to help out not just their family but also the families of other Marines.”
Even though he received the plaque and certificate, Weaver doesn’t believe that the award is about him, but about the families of the Marines.
“The unit says nothing about me, as a commander, and says everything about the families,” said Weaver. “Commanders change every two years, but most of these families in reserve units stay much longer.”