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Fleet Marine Force, Atlantic
The official seal of the Fleet Marine Force, Atlantic
Active16 December 1946 – present
Country United States of America
TypeMaritime general and special purpose landing force
RoleAmphibious warfare, expeditionary warfare
Part of United States Marine Corps
 United States Navy
Garrison/HQNAVSTA Norfolk, Virginia, U.S.
Commanders
Current
commander
LtGen Brian W. Cavanaugh

The Fleet Marine Force, Atlantic (FMFLANT) is an American maritime landing force that is spread across the Atlantic Ocean. It is headquartered at Naval Station Norfolk and directs and commands all the subordinate elements of the Navy Expeditionary Strike Force and Marine Air-Ground Task Force components that follow under the 2nd (Disestablished and merged with US Fleet Forces Command on 30 September 2011), 4th, and 6th Fleet and the Marine Forces Command (MarForCom). The Commanding General of Marine Forces Command is dual-posted as the Commanding General of the Fleet Marine Force, Atlantic. FMFLANT is under operational control of the Commander-in-Chief, United States Fleet Forces Command, when deployed.

History

The Fleet Marine Force, Atlantic, traces its history to the Advanced Base Force, created in the early 1900s. In the early 1920s, the Marine Corps began developing the advanced base doctrine from a defensive posture to one that included offensive amphibious operations. The units of the Advanced Base Force became the East Coast Expeditionary Force in 1921, during the reforms made to the Marine Corps structure by Commandant John Lejeune, to emphasize the more offensive nature of its potential operations.[1] As the expeditionary warfare concept developed, in December 1933 the Fleet Marine Force was established,[2] with one brigade at Quantico, Virginia, and one in San Diego, California.[3] In 1941, the Fleet Marine Force became a training command and two field commands, the Amphibious Corps, Atlantic Fleet, and Amphibious Corps, Pacific Fleet, were created.[4]

The Basic Post-War Plan No. 2 was issued on 22 March 1946, which divided the Marine Corps into two Fleet Marine Force components: Atlantic (FMFLANT) and Pacific (FMFPAC). The Fleet Marine Force, Atlantic, was activated with the commander of the 2nd Marine Division as its acting commanding general, and under the operational control of the Commander-in-Chief of the U.S. Atlantic Fleet, on 16 December 1946.[5] Its first headquarters was Camp Lejeune in North Carolina, before being moved to Norfolk, Virginia, in March 1947. On 13 July 1992, FMFLANT became part of Marine Corps Forces, Atlantic (MARFORLANT), which was renamed U.S. Marine Corps Forces Command (MARFORCOM) on 30 December 2005.[6]

From 1980, the commanding general of Fleet Marine Force, Atlantic, was also the designated head of Fleet Marine Force, Europe,[7] which became Marine Corps Forces Europe (MARFOREUR) in 1994.[8] In the early 1990s, the post also became the designated commander of Marine Corps Forces South (MARFORSOUTH).[9] These were both "designate" headquarters, meaning they only had a minimal staff during peacetime that would become a larger full service component command only during operations.[10] Commanding General, Fleet Marine Force, Atlantic, was nominally the commander of both. In 2008, MARFOREUR became a separate organization with its own dedicated commander,[11] and MARFORSOUTH did so in 2015.[12] From 1980 to 1997, the commanding general of FMFLANT also was the commanding general of II Marine Expeditionary Force.[7][13]

Organization

Reporting directly to the Commanding General, Fleet Marine Force, Atlantic (CG FMFLANT) are the Commanding General, II Marine Expeditionary Force (MEF), the Commanding General, 2nd Marine Expeditionary Brigade (MEB), and the Commanding Officers of three Marine Expeditionary Units (22d, 24th, 26th MEUs). The Commanding General, II MEF, exercises operational control over the 2d Marine Division, the 2d Marine Aircraft Wing, and the 2d Marine Logistics Group.

Hierarchy of Fleet Marine Force units

Commander, United States Fleet Forces Command (COMFLTFORCOM)

Naval Support Activity
Norfolk, Virginia

Marine Forces Command (MARFORCOM)

Landing Force, Second Fleet (LF2F)
Combined Task Force 22
(CTF-22)
Naval Station Norfolk
Norfolk, VA
Combined Task Force 23
(CTF-23)
II Marine Expeditionary Force
(II MEF)
MCB Camp Lejeune
North Carolina, United States

Marine Forces, South (MARFORSOUTH)

Landing Force, Fourth Fleet (LF4F)
U.S. Southern Command
Miami, Florida
II Marine Expeditionary Force MCB Camp Lejeune
North Carolina, United States

Marine Forces, Europe (MARFOREUR)

Landing Force, Sixth Fleet (LF6F)
Task Force 61 Naval Support Activity Naples
Naples, Italy
Task Force 62
Task Force 68
II Marine Expeditionary Force MCB Camp Lejeune
North Carolina, United States

List of commanders

No. Commander Term Ref
Portrait Name Took office Left office Term length
Commanding General FMFLANT[14]
-
Thomas E. Watson
Watson, Thomas E.Major General
Thomas E. Watson
(1892–1966)
Acting
16 December 19461 January 194716 days[14][15]
1
Keller Rockey
Rockey, Keller E.Lieutenant General
Keller Rockey
(1888–1970)
1 January 19471 July 19492 years, 181 days[16]
2
LeRoy P. Hunt
Hunt, LeRoy P.Lieutenant General
LeRoy P. Hunt
(1892–1968)
1 July 19491 July 19512 years, 0 days[17]
3
Graves B. Erskine
Erskine, Graves B.Lieutenant General
Graves B. Erskine
(1897–1973)
1 July 19511 July 19532 years, 0 days[18]
4
Oliver P. Smith
Smith, Oliver P.Lieutenant General
Oliver P. Smith
(1893–1977)
1 July 19531 September 19552 years, 62 days[19]
5
Alfred H. Noble
Noble, Alfred H.Lieutenant General
Alfred H. Noble
(1894–1983)
1 September 19551 November 19561 year, 61 days[20]
5
Ray A. Robinson
Robinson, Ray A.Lieutenant General
Ray A. Robinson
(1896–1976)
1 November 19561 November 19571 year, 0 days[21]
6
Edwin A. Pollock
Pollock, Edwin A.Lieutenant General
Edwin A. Pollock
(1899–1982)
1 November 19571 November 19592 years, 0 days[22]
7
Joseph C. Burger
Burger, Joseph C.Lieutenant General
Joseph C. Burger
(1902–1982)
1 November 19591 November 19612 years, 0 days[14]
8
Robert B. Luckey
Luckey, Robert B.Lieutenant General
Robert B. Luckey
(1905–1974)
1 November 19611 August 19631 year, 273 days[23]
9
James P. Berkeley
Berkeley, James P.Lieutenant General
James P. Berkeley
(1907–1995)
1 August 19631 July 19651 year, 334 days[14]
10
Alpha Bowser
Bowser, Alpha L.Lieutenant General
Alpha Bowser
(1910–2003)
1 July 19651 July 19672 years, 0 days[24]
11
Richard G. Weede
Weede, Richard G.Lieutenant General
Richard G. Weede
(1911–1985)
1 July 196731 August 19692 years, 61 days[25]
12
Frederick E. Leek
Leek, Frederick E.Lieutenant General
Frederick E. Leek
(1914–1996)
31 August 19691 July 19711 year, 304 days[26]
13
Earl E. Anderson
Anderson, Earl E.Lieutenant General
Earl E. Anderson
(1919–2015)
1 July 19711 April 1972275 days[27]
14
George C. Axtell
Axtell, George C.Lieutenant General
George C. Axtell
(1920–2011)
1 April 19721 September 19742 years, 153 days[28]
15
Robert L. Nichols
Nichols, Robert L.Lieutenant General
Robert L. Nichols
(1922–2001)
1 September 19741 October 19762 years, 30 days[14]
16
Robert H. Barrow
Barrow Robert H.Lieutenant General
Robert H. Barrow
(1922–2008)
1 October 19761 July 19781 year, 273 days[29]
17
Edward Miller
Miller Edward J.Lieutenant General
Edward Miller
(1922–1993)
1 July 19781 October 19802 years, 92 days[30]
Commanding General FMFLANT / II MEF / FMFEUR
18
Adolph G. Schwenk
Schwenk Adolph G.Lieutenant General
Adolph G. Schwenk
(1922–2004)
1 October 19801 July 19821 year, 273 days[7]
19
John H. Miller
Miller John H.Lieutenant General
John H. Miller
(born 1925)
1 July 19821 September 19842 years, 62 days[14]
20
Alfred M. Gray Jr.
Gray, Alfred M.Lieutenant General
Alfred M. Gray Jr.
(1928–2024)
1 September 19841 July 19872 years, 303 days[31]
-
Clayton L. Comfort
Comfort, Clayton L.Major General
Clayton L. Comfort
(1930–2004)
Acting
1 July 19871 September 198762 days[14]
21
Ernest T. Cook Jr.
Cook Ernest T.Lieutenant General
Ernest T. Cook Jr.
(1935–2000)
1 July 19871 July 19903 years, 0 days[32][33]
22
Carl E. Mundy Jr.
Lieutenant General
Carl E. Mundy Jr.
(1935–2014)
1 July 199025 June 1991359 days[14]
Commanding General FMFLANT / II MEF / Commander MARFORLANT / MARFOREUR / MARFORSOUTH
23
William M. Keys
Keys, William M.Lieutenant General
William M. Keys
(born 1937)
25 June 19911 September 19943 years, 68 days[34]
24
Robert B. Johnston
Johnston, Robert B.Lieutenant General
Robert B. Johnston
(1937–2023)
1 September 1994August 1995334 days[35]
25
Charles E. Wilhelm
Wilhelm, Charles E.Lieutenant General
Charles E. Wilhelm
(born 1941)
August 199523 November 19972 years, 114 days[36]
Commanding General FMFLANT / Commander MARFORLANT / MARFOREUR / MARFORSOUTH
26
Peter Pace
Pace, PeterLieutenant General
Peter Pace
(born 1945)
23 November 19978 September 20002 years, 290 days[13]
27
Raymond P. Ayres
Ayres, Raymond P.Lieutenant General
Raymond P. Ayres
(born 1944)
8 September 200015 August 20021 year, 341 days
28
Martin R. Berndt
Berndt, Martin R.Lieutenant General
Martin R. Berndt
(born 1941)
15 August 200215 August 20053 years, 0 days[37]
Commanding General FMFLANT / Commander MARFORCOM / MARFOREUR / MARFORSOUTH
29
Robert R. Blackman Jr.
Blackman, Robert R. Jr.Lieutenant General
Robert R. Blackman Jr.
(born 1948)
15 August 200518 July 20071 year, 337 days[38]
Commanding General FMFLANT / Commander MARFORCOM / MARFORSOUTH
30
Joseph F. Weber
Weber, Joseph F.Lieutenant General
Joseph F. Weber
(born 1950)
18 July 20071 August 20081 year, 14 days[39]
31
Richard F. Natonski
Natonski, Richard F.Lieutenant General
Richard F. Natonski
(born 1951)
1 August 200817 August 20102 years, 16 days
32
Dennis J. Hejlik
Hejik, Dennis J.Lieutenant General
Dennis J. Hejlik
(born 1947)
17 August 201020 July 20121 year, 338 days[40][41]
33
John M. Paxton Jr.
Paxton, John M. Jr.Lieutenant General
John M. Paxton Jr.
(born 1951)
20 July 201213 December 2012146 days[41][42]
-
W. Blake Crowe
Crowe, W. BlakeBrigadier General
W. Blake Crowe
(born 1967)
Acting
13 December 201228 June 2013197 days
34
Richard T. Tryon
Tryon, Richard T.Lieutenant General
Richard T. Tryon
(born c. 1954)
28 June 20131 July 20141 year, 3 days[43]
35
Robert B. Neller
Neller, Robert B.Lieutenant General
Robert B. Neller
(born 1953)
1 July 201423 September 20151 year, 84 days
Commanding General FMFLANT / Commander MARFORCOM
-
Bradford J. Gering
Gering, Bradford J.Brigadier General
Bradford J. Gering
(born 1967)
Acting
23 September 201518 December 201586 days
36
John E. Wissler
Wissler, John E.Lieutenant General
John E. Wissler
(born 1956)
18 December 201514 August 20171 year, 239 days[44]
37
Mark A. Brilakis
Brilakis, Mark A.Lieutenant General
Mark A. Brilakis
(born 1958)
14 August 20173 July 20191 year, 323 days[45]
38
Robert F. Hedelund
Hedelund, Robert F.Lieutenant General
Robert F. Hedelund
(born 1961)
3 July 201925 October 20212 years, 114 days[46]
-
Michael E. Langley
Langley, Michael E.Major General
Michael E. Langley
(born c. 1963)
Acting
25 October 20213 November 20219 days
39
Michael E. Langley
Langley, Michael E.Lieutenant General
Michael E. Langley
(born c. 1963)
3 November 20214 August 2022274 days[47]
-
John F. Kelliher III
Kelliher, John F. IIIBrigadier General
John F. Kelliher III
Acting
4 August 202230 August 202226 days
40
Brian W. Cavanaugh
Cavanaugh, Brian W.Lieutenant General
Brian W. Cavanaugh
(born 1968)
30 August 2022Incumbent1 year, 310 days[48]

History

See also

References

  1. ^ Emmel, David C. (11 June 2010). The Development of Amphibious Doctrine. U.S. Army Command and General Staff College – p. 33. Retrieved 6 October 2023.
  2. ^ Swanson, Claude A. (7 December 1933). The Fleet Marine Force. Marine Corps University. Retrieved 6 October 2023.
  3. ^ Heinl, R.D., Jr. (November 1947). The U. S. Marine Corps: Author of Modern Amphibious War. Proceedings of the United States Naval Institute, Vol. 73/11/537.
  4. ^ Garand, George W.; Strobridge, Truman R. (1971). Western Pacific Operations: History of U.S. Marine Corps Operations in World War II (Volume IV). Marine Corps History Division – pp. 19–23. Retrieved 6 October 2023.
  5. ^ Tyson, Carolyn A. (1965). A Chronology of the United States Marine Corps 1935-1946. Marine Corps History Division. Retrieved 1 October 2023.
  6. ^ MARINE CORPS FORCES COMMAND. Marine Corps University. Published 6 June 2016. Retrieved 2 October 2023.
  7. ^ a b c Lieutenant General Adolph G. Schwenk. Marine Corps University. Retrieved 4 October 2023.
  8. ^ Marine Corps Forces, Europe.
  9. ^ Marines. Division of Public Affairs, Headquarters Marine Corps – p. 11. Published January 1995.
  10. ^ History. U.S. Marine Corps Forces Europe and Africa. Retrieved 5 October 2023.
  11. ^ Major General Cornell A. Wilson. U.S. Marines. Retrieved 5 October 2023.
  12. ^ Hodge Seck, Hope (30 June 2015). 1-star becomes first dedicated commander of Marine Forces South. Military Times. Retrieved 22 September 2023.
  13. ^ a b General Peter Pace. U.S. Marines. Retrieved 5 October 2023.
  14. ^ a b c d e f g h Former Commanders (archived). U.S. Marine Corps Forces, Atlantic. Published 25 June 2001. Retrieved 2 October 2023.
  15. ^ Tyson, Carolyn A. (1965). A Chronology of the United States Marine Corps 1935-1946. Marine Corps History Division. Retrieved 1 October 2023.
  16. ^ Lieutenant General Kelley E. Rockey (archived). Marine Corps University. Retrieved 2 October 2023.
  17. ^ General Leroy P. Hunt. Marine Corps University. Retrieved 2 October 2023.
  18. ^ General Graves Blanchard Erskine, USMC. Marine Corps History Division. Retrieved 2 October 2023.
  19. ^ General Oliver P. Smith (archived). Marine Corps History Division. Retrieved 2 October 2023.
  20. ^ General Alfred H. Noble (archived). Marine Corps History Division. Retrieved 2 October 2023
  21. ^ General Ray A. Robinson (archived). Marine Corps History Division. Retrieved 2 October 2023.
  22. ^ General Edwin A. Pollock (archived). Marine Corps History Division. Retrieved 2 October 2023.
  23. ^ Lieutenant General Robert Burneston Luckey. Marine Corps University. Retrieved 2 October 2023.
  24. ^ Alpha L. Bowser (archived). Marine Corps History Division. Retrieved 2 October 2023.
  25. ^ LtGen. Weede is honored. Camp Lejeune Globe, Vol. 25, No. 34. Published 22 August 1969. Retrieved 4 October 2023.
  26. ^ LtGen. Leek Takes Helm. Camp Lejeune Globe, Vol. 25, No. 36. Published 5 September 1969. Retrieved 4 October 2023.
  27. ^ General Earl E. Anderson (archived). Marine Corps History Division. Retrieved 4 October 2023.
  28. ^ Axtell moves up. Camp Lejeune Globe, Vol. 28, No. 11. Published 16 March 1972. Retrieved 2 October 2023.
  29. ^ General Robert H. Barrow (archived). Marine Corps History Division. Retrieved 4 October 2023.
  30. ^ History of the 4th Marine Division (PDF). 4th Marine Division Historical Detachment. 2000.
  31. ^ Alfred M. Gray, Jr. (archived). Marine Corps History Division. Retrieved 4 October 2023.
  32. ^ Marine General Nominated. New York Times. Published 15 August 1987. Retrieved 4 October 2023.
  33. ^ LtGen Ernest T. Cook, Jr.. Military Hall of Honor. Retrieved 4 October 2023.
  34. ^ Lieutenant General William M. Keys. Marine Corps University. Retrieved 4 October 2023.
  35. ^ Lieutenant General Robert B. Johnston. U.S. Marines. Retrieved 5 October 2023.
  36. ^ General Charles E. Wilhelm. U.S. Marines. Retrieved 5 October 2023.
  37. ^ Finarelli, Linda (17 August 2011). Martin Berndt, Marine general and Springfield grad, dies at 63. The Reporter Online. Retrieved 5 October 2023.
  38. ^ Col. R.R. Blackman (archived). U.S. Marines. Retrieved 4 October 2023.
  39. ^ "Q&A with Lt. Gen. Joseph F. Weber". Department of the Navy Chief Information Officer. October 2007.
  40. ^ "Lieutenant General Dennis J. Hejlik, Commander, U.S. Marine Corps Forces Command". Archived from the original on December 2, 2011. Retrieved January 26, 2022.
  41. ^ a b Todd, David (July 25, 2012). "Hejlik closes out extensive military career; remains true to Marine core values". Military News.
  42. ^ McAdam, Scott (December 13, 2012). "Paxton Relinquishes Command, MARFORCOM". DVIDS. Retrieved January 26, 2022.
  43. ^ "MARFORCOM change of command".
  44. ^ "Wissler assumes command of MARFORCOM, FMF Atlantic". U.S. Marine Corps Forces Command. December 18, 2015. Retrieved January 26, 2022.
  45. ^ "NAVAL SUPPORT ACTIVITY HAMPTON ROADS - (Right to left) Lt. Gen. John E. Wissler, Commander, U.S. Marine Corps Forces Command, passes the unit colors to Lt. Gen. Mark A. Brilakis during a change of command ceremony at POW/MIA Field aboard Naval Support Activity Hampton Roads, Aug. 14. Lt. Gen. Wissler assumed command of MARFORCOM in December 2015. Lt. Gen. Brilakis most recently served as the Deputy Commandant of Manpower and Reserve Affairs at Headquarters Marine Corps , Washington D.C." www.marines.mil. August 14, 2017.
  46. ^ Braden, Jessika (July 3, 2019). "MARFORCOM welcomes new commanding general". DVIDS.
  47. ^ "Lieutenant General Michael E. Langley". U.S. Marine Corps. Retrieved January 26, 2022.
  48. ^ Alvarado, Angel (August 30, 2022). "The Incoming Commander [Image 4 of 13]". DVIDS. Norfolk, Virginia: Fleet Marine Force Atlantic, Marine Forces Command, Marine Forces Northern Command. Retrieved August 31, 2022.