ABOARD USS WASP -- As the 24th Marine Expeditionary Unit (Special Operations Capable) (24th MEU (SOC)) began its deployment, many readers were introduced to the Ellis brothers. They were both at that time expectant fathers. Now they are bonafide 24th MEU (SOC) dads.
Just before the 24th MEU (SOC) started its transit back across the Atlantic Ocean to meet with family and friends, two more brothers were reunited during the 24th MEU and 26th MEU changeover.
Cpl. Nicolas Plurien, 22, Ground Mobile Forces Satellite Communications Operator, 24th MEU (SOC) Command Element, was afforded the opportunity to meet up with his brother, LCpl. Timothy Plurien, 21, Amphibious Crewman, BLT 2/2, 26th MEU (SOC), July 24 while the senior staff and officers participated in a changeover ceremony which relinquished the 24th MEU (SOC) of its duties in the Mediterranean Sea.
"It's the last time we'll get to see each other until Christmas," said Nicolas. "And I think it's awesome that we're given the time to do this."
"It took some convincing, but we worked it out," he said, talking about each unit being able to part with the brothers for a day so they could meet.
The Plurien family, of Lincoln, Neb., boasts the proud honor of having had three sons in the Marine Corps and all of them with East Coast MEUs. The one brother missing from this reunion was the oldest, Jean Paul Plurien, a Tow Gunner for 2d Tank Battalion, BLT 2/6 from 1984 -1988.
In August 1988 he was killed in a motorcycle accident on Highway 17 in Jacksonville, N.C. He would have been 33 this year.
"He would have loved to have been here," said Nicolas. "And I have a good feeling that if he weren't on a MEU with us, he would have flown out here to be with us."
Now Nicolas gets to go home while his brother continues his duties in the Mediterranean Sea with the 26th MEU (SOC).
Follow the 24th MEU (SOC) deployment on their website at www.usmc.mil/24meu.