Marine Corps’ First Korean American General Takes Command at Camp Pendleton

by JAMES S. KIM | @james_s_kim

The distinguished 1st Marine Division has a new commander in Brig. Gen. Daniel D. Yoo, reports Press Enterprise. Maj. Gen. Lawrence D. Nicholson transferred command to Yoo during a ceremony yesterday at Camp Pendleton near San Diego, Calif., where the division is headquartered.

Yoo, 55, will lead the 23,000-strong division until September, when he will go to Florida to serve in U.S. Special Operations Command. He led Camp Pendleton’s last deployment to Afghanistan in Jan. 2013, as the 1st Marine Expeditionary Force (Forward) oversaw the Afghan elections in April and devised a plan to exit the country.

Screen Shot 2015-07-31 at 4.57.10 PMMajor Gen. Lawrence D. Nicholson, left, relinquishes command of the 1st Marine Division to Brig. Gen. Daniel D. Yoo. (Photo via Matt Masin/Press Enterprise)

A graduate of Arizona State University, Yoo was commissioned in the Marine Corps in 1985 as second lieutenant and reported to the 1st Marine Division at Camp Pendleton in 1986. As a Marine Combatant Diver, Military Freefall Parachutist and a graduate of the U.S. Army Ranger School, Yoo has commanded infantry and reconnaissance units and served at the Pentagon, as well as with Marine Corps Forces Special Operation Command.

Personal decorations include the Legion of Merit, Bronze Star Medal with Gold Star, Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Meritorious Service Medal with Gold Star, Joint Achievement Medal, Navy Achievement Medal, and the Combat Action Ribbon.

The 1st Marine Division is the Marine Corps’ oldest and largest active-duty division since being activated on Feb. 1, 1941. It consists of Marines and sailors from Camp Pendleton and Twentynine Palms Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center. The Marines of the 1st Division have a storied history: They served in the Guadalcanal campaign during World War II and were also deployed to Korea, Vietnam, Afghanistan and Iraq.

You can read Brig. Gen. Yoo’s complete profile on the U.S. Marine Corps website.

Clarification: A previous version of this article did not mention Yoo would be serving as commander of the 1st Marine Division until September.


Featured image via U.S. Marine Corps

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