View Full Version : Ready to lead

05-13-09, 11:21 AM
Ready to lead
Detachment names 1st female commandant
by Marshall White
Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Men and women wearing red sport coats came from Platte City, Maryville, Savannah and St. Joseph Tuesday night to honor one of their own.

The gathering at San Jose Steakhouse and Mexican Grill was the annual installation of officers for Detachment No. 180 of the Marine Corps League. The detachment, which draws its membership from throughout Northwest Missouri, installed its first female detachment commandant, a former lance corporal — Brenda Lindstrom.

Ms. Lindstrom, a full-time student studying computer information systems at Missouri Western State University, served in the Corps from 1992 to 1997. Her father, Steve Fletchall, also was a Marine. She left the Marines after being injured in the line of duty. Three years ago, Ms. Lindstrom joined Detachment No. 180 because she wanted the comradeship of her fellow Marines, a chance to get involved in service to others and because she still has a dream of making a difference.

The detachment has about 60 members, including Jack Teegarden, a former lance corporal who served in World War II, Korea and Vietnam. Another female member is Sgt. Debra Butterfield, who served between 1974 and 1977. She moved from Colorado to be closer to her sister, and found camaraderie in the League. The group’s newest recruit, Jeff Drake, served in the Corps between 1985 and 1989.

The League works to help Marines or any veteran, Ms. Lindstrom said.

The local detachment provided an honors detail at 25 funerals in the area last year, said Terry Thompson, the outgoing commandant.

The group also posts colors at Skidmore’s annual Freedom Fest and participates in a variety of activities to honor all former military service members on Memorial Day.

Maj. Gen. John A. Lejeune started the Marine Corps League in 1923 to promote the ideals of American freedom and democracy, as well as voluntarily aiding and rendering assistance to all Marines. The local detachment was formed in 1971 and meets on the second Tuesday each month at the American Legion Post No. 359 on Frederick Boulevard.

Marshall White can be reached at marshall@npgco.com.