Members of the Marine Cryptologic Support Battalion gathered June 20 for a brief but poignant ceremony to honor Marines with a lasting memorial to their fallen comrade, Lance Cpl. James Ray Walden III.
The roadside memorial is located near the corner of Patuxent and Conway roads in Odenton, according to Capt. Shelley House, MCSB Headquarters Company commander.
Chaplain (Capt.) Thomas Webber, Lt. Col. Michael R. Challgren — who recently relinquished command of the MCSB — and members of the Denison family participated in the ribbon cutting that formally dedicated the memorial in honor of Walden.
Denison Landscaping Company and the Denison family were instrumental in the construction and dedication of the memorial.
Walden’s death on Feb. 24, which resulted from a motorcycle accident in Gambrills, affected the entire battalion.
At the MCSB change of command on June 23, Challgren said the loss of Walden, who was 21, affected the entire unit and demonstrated the esprit de corps within the unit as “really something special.”
“The way MCSB Marines responded demonstrated the truest meaning of cohesion, esprit de corps and compassion for others, and has helped make this unit stronger and better,” Challgren said.
The permanent memorial follows several events honoring the fallen Marine and his contributions to the unit.