NORFOLK, VA --
NORFOLK, VA – The U.S. Marines came in full force to support the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference basketball tournament March 10-14 in Norfolk, Virginia.
During the event the Marines interacted with the crowds with pull-up contests, t-shirt giveaways and a flight simulator. Outside of the tournament, the Marines took the time to meet with athletes and staff members of the various schools in the conference during the Mayoral Reception and Hall of Fame brunch.
“(The Marines) have been with us for some years now and they are our nation’s best,” said Dennis E. Thomas, the MEAC Commissioner. “Thank you for supporting and investing in the conference. We hope to continue sending students from our institutions to the Marines.” During the Friday morning Hall of Fame brunch, four individuals were inducted into the MEAC Hall of Fame before the tournament commenced for the day.
The individuals inducted were Justin Durant of Hampton University, Antoine Bethea and Breshawn Harris of Howard University, and Hallie Gregory of University of Maryland Easter Shore.
Additionally, the Marines presented an Excellence in Leadership award to Marquis Grissom for his work with the Marquis Grissom Baseball Association in Atlanta. The award was presented by Lt. Col. Ricardo T. Player, the Marine Forces Command Director of Public Affairs.
Grissom attended Florida A&M University to play baseball. His professional baseball career saw him play for the Montreal Expos, the Atlanta Braves, the Cleveland Indians, the Milwaukee Brewers, the Los Angeles Dodgers and the San Francisco Giants. After retiring, he founded the Marquis Grissom Baseball Association which provides young athletes in underserved areas around Atlanta the opportunity to play competitive baseball.
“(The MGBA) is an excellent endeavor and today we honor Mr. Grissom,” said Player. “As Marines we value ‘Honor, Courage and Commitment’…The Excellence in Leadership Award is presented to individuals who represent these values and Mr. Grissom does that indeed.”
Grissom then thanked those who made a difference during his life.
“I want to thank the commissioner and the Marine Corps for putting on such a great event,” said Grissom. “I am truly honored and blessed to be here to receive this award.”