Matthew M. Burke | October 24, 2018
CAMP FOSTER, Okinawa — The new Marine Corps base under construction on northern Guam will been named after one of the island’s most revered sons.
The main cantonment area of the Finegayan base, which had been referred to as Marine Corps Base Guam, will honor Marine Brig. Gen. Vicente “Ben” Tomas Garrido Blaz, according to a statement released Sunday by Guam Del. Madeleine Bordallo.
Blaz — who died in 2014 and is buried at Arlington National Cemetery — is the highest ranking Chamorro to have served in the Marines, the statement said. He also represented Guam for four terms as the territory’s delegate to the House of Representatives.
The honor was recommended by Bordallo and endorsed by Marine Corps commandant Gen. Robert Neller and Secretary of the Navy Richard Spencer, the statement said.
“We believe [the commemoration] is in the best interest of the Marine Corps, and reflects the strong and unique relationship of the Marine Corps and the people of Guam,” Neller wrote to Spencer, according to the statement.
Bordallo said she looked forward to the base being named in Blaz’s honor when it is completed in the coming years.
“As the first Chamorro Marine Corps flag officer and Guam’s former member of Congress, General Blaz embodied the values and spirit of Guam, the Chamorro people, and the U.S. Marine Corps,” she said in the statement. “He served our country and island with distinction, and he was a true patriot and statesman.”
Read more here.