Posted on November 08, 2011 21:41
(Sturgis, S.D. – November 8, 2011) In honor of the many brave men and women serving our country around the world in the armed forces, the Sturgis Buffalo Chip is proud to present two signed United States Marine Corp flags to the 2nd Battalion 2nd Marine Division, Golf Company and to USMC Lcpl. Erik Galvan as a token of appreciation to these Marines who have served proudly for their country. Sturgis Buffalo Chip owner Rod Woodruff presented the flags to Tom O’Neal whose son, Steven, is currently serving with 2/2 Marines, Golf Company.
The flags being presented were signed by artists: Edgar Winter, Alice Cooper, Pop Evil, Styx, Bachman and Turner, Def Leppard, Buckcherry, Sweet Cyanide, Toby Keith, Tesla, Puddle of Mudd, and Saving Abel. These artists performed at the Buffalo Chip during the 2011 Sturgis Motorcycle Rally. A big thank-you goes out to these performers for taking the time to show their support for our troops!
Tom’s son, Steven, was deployed to the Helmand Province, Afghanistan with the 2/2 Marines, Golf Company, from camp Lejeune, North Carolina from November 2009 to May 2010. Nine months later, his unit was deployed as part of the 22nd MEU (Marine Expeditionary Unit) to the Mediterranean Sea in support of Operation Unified Protector that oversaw the toppling of Muammar Gaddafi’s regime in Libya. There are approximately 2,500 Marines and Sailors that make up this particular battle group and will not return to the U.S. until sometime mid-2012.
Nineteen year old Erik Galvan, with the 1/5 Marines from Camp Pendleton, California was deployed to Afghanistan in March 2011. In June, Erik was severely wounded by an IED (improvised explosive device) while on patrol with his squad. He suffered a traumatic amputation to both legs. Along with the loss of his legs, he had catastrophic injuries to both arms and hands. Erik continues to make amazing progress and displays the heart of a true American hero.
We are all truly thankful for the service and sacrifices made by the many men and women, and their families that give up so much for our safety and freedom.