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Hometown Heroes: Capt. Joshua Kelly

By Cpl. Dallas Johnson | Marine Corps Forces Reserves | March 28, 2018

U.S. Marine Corps Reserve Capt. Joshua Kelly, a platoon commander with Truck Company, 25th Marine Regiment, 4th Marine Division, has always valued travel and the thrill of challenge.

A native of Durham, North Carolina, Kelly was fortunate enough to travel the world with his parents during his formative years, experiencing how different cultures lived. After graduating high school in Tanzania in 2009 and returning stateside, Kelly became interested in pursuing a military career.

“I started out with a Naval ROTC scholarship,” Kelly said. “While doing that, I saw the Marines and the standards they held themselves up to, the reputation they had, the kind of work they did, and that's what really threw me in. As a young officer in the Marine Corps, in my opinion, it's one of the greatest places to get an elevated level of responsibility that you don't really get anywhere else.”

In his five years as a Marine Corps logistics officer, Kelly has mobilized for deployment with Special Purpose Marine Air Ground Task Force- Southern Command in 2017 and attended Mountain Training Exercise 5-15 and Integrated Training Exercise 4-16. When not performing his Marine Corps duties, Kelly works as a product specialist with Facebook's product operations.

For achievements in his role as the assistant logistics officer on his SPMAGTF deployment, Kelly was awarded the First Lieutenant Travis Manion Marine Corps Officer Logistician of the Year award at the Marine Corps Association and Foundation's 14th annual Ground Logistics Awards Dinner at the Crystal Gateway Marriott, Arlington, Virginia, March 22, 2018.

The award is named in honor of Manion, who was killed during a patrol mission on April 29, 2007, by enemy sniper fire in Al Anbar Province, Iraq, while fighting to defend against an enemy ambush.

Manion’s short but well known quote “If not me, then who?” bears meaning for many Marine Corps officers. For Kelly, Manion’s quote is a powerful message which should be the core mindset of all Marines.

Kelly knows that without his Marines by his side, much of what he accomplished during SPMAGTF-SC wouldn’t have been possible.

“The biggest shoutout for this award is for my Marines,” said Kelly “I think this award is a testament to the great Marines I've had the privilege of leading and all the hard work they've put in. So, I humbly accept it on behalf of them and feel like they deserve credit for it as well. They did me right for such great work. And I was privileged to be able to lead them.”
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