MACOMB, Ill. – Western Illinois University Athletics presented a game-worn camouflage Leathernecks football jersey to a member of the United States Marine Corps.
Captain August Christhilf of Charleston, Ill. was given the jersey as a surprise in St. Louis, Mo. Christhilf was given the jersey after completing his three-year tour of Recruiting Duty as an Officer Recruiter.
His obligation was to find motivated, well-qualified students who wanted to be leaders with the Marines after their graduation. Captain Christhilf now moves to the east coast for advanced training.
"When I received the call from Sergeant James Bridges about wanting a Leatherneck jersey, I was ecstatic," Western Illinois Interim Director of Athletics Lisa Melz-Jennings said. "Anytime you can give back to the organization that has so graciously allowed you to use their nickname since 1927 is an honor. It is important to take the time to show appreciation for our U.S. Military Men and Women, past and present, for their sacrifices, dedication, and service to our country," Melz-Jennings added.
Sergeant Bridges of Champaign, Ill. accepted the jersey in June and organized the effort with Western Illinois.