USS CARTER HALL, At sea --
For Lance Cpls. Matt Sinclair and Daniel Sinclair, both from Easton, Md., an armorer and landing support specialist respectively, assigned to Combat Logistics Battalion 26, 26th Marine Expeditionary Unit, this deployment is bringing them closer. Both Marines are currently embarked aboard the USS Carter Hall.
For both Matt and Daniel Sinclair, aged 22 and 21 respectively, the decision to join the Marine Corps came independently, though for similar reasons.
“I just wanted to get out of town,” said Matt Sinclair.
His brother’s logic was much the same.
“It was time to figure something else out,” said Daniel Sinclair.
Joining as an armorer, Matt Sinclair went to basic training in May 2011 before going through armorer school, followed by assignment to 8th Engineer Support Battalion, stationed at Camp Lejeune, N.C. His brother followed four months later, joining with a contract for the logistics option. Daniel Sinclair went to basic training in August 2011, went to school for landing support specialists, and was subsequently assigned to Combat Logistics Regiment 27, also at Camp Lejeune, a stone’s throw from where his brother was working and living.
“When he got out of school and moved in, he was only one barracks apart,” said Matt Sinclair.
Matt Sinclair was chopped over to CLB-26 from the beginning of pre-deployment workups, moving from 8th ESB to take part in pre-deployment training. Daniel Sinclair was not, but when the requirement for more landing support Marines came down from CLB-26 after the Fort Pickett, Va., field training exercise in September 2012, he volunteered to go to CLB-26 and deploy with the 26th MEU. “I wanted to try something new – to get a deployment under my belt,” said Daniel Sinclair.
At the beginning of the deployment, the Sinclairs were on different ships: Matt on the USS Carter Hall and Daniel on the USS Kearsarge. But routine rotation of Marines to fill different slots in the CLB detachments means that Daniel is now aboard the USS Carter Hall as well, sleeping the in the same tower of racks as his brother. “I knew right off, everyone’s going to confuse us,” said Matt Sinclair. “Same last name and all. Same berthing, and now he’s in the rack below mine.”
To have someone you know from your hometown is uncommon; to have your own sibling is unheard of. “I feel like I’m cheating the deployment, since I’ve got someone from home with me. He’s literally one of my best friends,” said Matt Sinclair. “It’s convenient – makes life a bit easier to have family with you,” said Daniel Sinclair.
The Sinclairs will continue their deployment aboard the USS Carter Hall with the 26th MEU until they return to Camp Lejeune, whereupon they’ll revert back to their respective parent commands. Until then, they’ll be living together aboard ship, going through their deployment together.