MARINE CORPS AIR STATION IWAKUNI, Japan (June 21, 2018) -- Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni Civilian Human Resources Office personnel conducted a retirement ceremony for Japanese master labor contractors (MLC) and indirect hire agreement (IHA) employees at MCAS Iwakuni, Japan, June 20, 2018.
The ceremony acknowledged a combined 488 years of service between 16 employees.
“Today we are honoring 16 retirees who have devoted much of their lives to the Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni community,” said U.S. Marine Corps Col. Richard F. Fuerst, commanding officer of MCAS Iwakuni. “Some of our retirees have worked on the air station for more than thirty years and some are near that mark. I know that working here was probably not always the easiest thing to do considering the language barriers, the cultural differences and the frequency with which American supervisors and coworkers come and go. I do hope that your experiences here have also provided unique reports and in some way enriched your lives.”
The Japanese employees are officially retiring as permanent employees because they have reached the age of 60, however the majority of the employees will continue to work on the air station.
During the ceremony, Fuerst and Sgt. Maj. Joseph S. Gregory, sergeant major of MCAS Iwakuni, presented each retiree with a certificate of appreciation for their contribution to the air station community.
Fuerst and Gregory also participated in a cake cutting portion of the ceremony where they cut the first piece of the cake with Kosaku Morimoto, a master labor contractor with Station Facilities. Morimoto has worked on the air station for 37 years, the most out of all the retirees.
Throughout the air station there are MLC’s and IHA employees, like Morimoto, working at various departments and Fuerst noted the crucial role that they play in accomplishing the mission of the air station during a speech that he delivered during the ceremony.
“I can assure you that we could not accomplish our mission here without your loyal and dedicated service,” said Fuerst. “I hope that you take a great deal of personal satisfaction in knowing that the air stations success is your success.”