8th & I Honors Seventh SMMC
Aug. 29, 2012
By Cpl Mondo Lescaud
Marine Corps Base Quantico, Va.: The Marine Corps honored the seventh sergeant major of the Marine Corps at Marine Corps Base Quantico, Va., Aug. 29, 2012.
The 83-year-old native of Imperial, Pa., passed away in his home in Fredericksburg, Va., Aug. 24, 2012. He is survived by his wife, Fannie Black.
Marine Barracks Washington supported the full-honors funeral for Henry H. Black.
Some notable guests of the ceremony included SgtMaj Micheal P. Barrett, sergeant major of the Marine Corps, Carlton Kent, John Estrada, and Alford McMichael, the 16th, 15th, and 14th sergeants major of the Marine Corps.
More than 50 Barracks Marines from Company B, the U.S. Marine Drum & Bugle Corps, the Marine Corps Body Bearers, and the Official Marine Corps Color Guard marched in the funeral escort, led by SgtMaj Eric J. Stockton, Barracks sergeant major.
Six body bearers carried the casket of Black from the hearse to the funeral area. They were followed by a congregation of Black’s family and close friends, all in support of their fallen hero.
A U.S. Navy chaplain held prayer for the family and friends just before the body bearers folded the flag that laid over Black’s casket. The flag was presented to Black’s wife.
Afterward, Barrett and Stockton gave their personal condolences.
“It was an honor to be a part of today’s ceremony,” Stockton said. “If it’s a sergeant major of the Marine Corps or a commandant, it should be the Barracks honoring them. That’s what we do.”
Throughout Black’s career, which started in June 1948, he deployed once to Korea and twice to Vietnam.
His awards include a Silver Star, two Bronze Stars, a Purple Heart Medal, a Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal, a Combat Action Ribbon, three Navy Presidential Unit Citations, seven Marine Corps Good Conduct Medals, a Navy Occupation Service Medal, two National Defense Medals, four Korean Service Medals, an Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal, four Vietnam Service Medals, a Korean Presidential Unit Citation, a Vietnam Gallantry Cross Unit Citation, Vietnam Civil Actions Unit Citation, United Nations Korea Medal, and a Vietnam Campaign Medal.