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Marine deputy director retires

By Pamela Jackson | | September 6, 2012

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Lt. Col. Donald E. Gray, deputy director, Maintenance Management Center, Marine Corps Logistics Command, bid farewell to 26 years of service as an active-duty Marine during a retirement ceremony at Schmid Field here, Aug. 24.

Gray enlisted in the Marine Corps in 1986 from his hometown of Houston, Texas.  He graduated as honorman from recruit training at Marine Corps Recruit Depot San Diego, and from the School of Infantry at Camp Pendleton, both in California. After graduating from Prairie View A&M University in Prairie View, Texas, in 1990, he was commissioned as a second lieutenant and reported to the basic school in Quantico, Va.

He served multiple assignments as an officer selection officer for Marine Corps Recruiting Station Houston, Texas; logistics officer for 3rd Marine Division in Okinawa, Japan; deputy assistant chief of staff G-4 and commander of Combat Logistics Company in Lop Buri, Thailand; assistant chief of staff G-4 at Marine Forces Europe/Marine Forces Africa in Stuttgart, Germany and as commanding officer of Marine Corps Logistics Command Forward in Afghanistan.

Jerry Mengelkoch, director, MMC, has worked with Gray for three years and described him as very dedicated to his family and the Corps. 

“He is a true professional, very articulate, pays close attention to detail and is compassionate with the civilian workforce and the Marines,” he said.

“Don is not only very intelligent, but a quick learner who knew very little about the MMC when he arrived, but learned the job very fast and filled in for me during my absences. What I will miss the most is his professionalism and his friendship.”

Mengelkoch added Gray was a trusted confidant and he respected his point of view on various issues or concerns. Mengelkoch took Gray’s point of view into consideration when making tough decisions. 

Robin Gray, transition counselor, Marine and Family Services, MCLB Albany, who has been married to (Don) Gray for 21 years, said she is very proud of her husband and his achievements.

“Don is an outstanding Marine who has succeeded greatly throughout his 26-year career,” she said.  “I have always admired his compassion for others and his dedication to those who worked with him.  His retirement is a transition into a new set of dreams and goals.” 

Gray said he will take some time to figure out what the next chapter in life is in accordance with God’s plan and what is best for his family right after going deep sea fishing.

“I am humbled and honored for the privilege to serve with great Marines and civilians,” Gray said.  “I never would have imagined that my humble beginnings in Texas would have me still in the Marine Corps at this point. I do not see it solely as a testament to my abilities, but a testament to the strong support and overall teamwork dedicated to supporting the warfighter. Most importantly, I’ve been blessed by the man upstairs.”


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