Korean American appointed commanding general of US Marine division

August 7, 2015
Daniel D. Yoo (U.S. Marine Corps)

Daniel D. Yoo (U.S. Marine Corps)

By Jun Ji-hye

Daniel D. Yoo, a Korean American brigadier general in the U.S. Marine Corps, has been appointed commanding general of the 1st Marine Division.

Yoo, formerly the assistant division commander at Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton, Calif., took command of the division of 23,000 troops on July 30 from Maj. Gen. Lawrence D. Nicholson.

Nicholson will take command of the III Marine Expeditionary Force at Okinawa, Japan, next month.

The 1st Marine Division participated in the 1950-53 Korean War. The division took a leading role in Gen. Douglas MacArthur’s famous Incheon Landing operation, code named “Operation Chromite.”

The change of command ceremony took place at the 1st Marine Division Headquarters Building, commonly known as the White House.

The division said Yoo, who became the first Korean American U.S. general in 2011, approached Nicholson first and thanked him for his leadership while at the division.

“Thank you very much on behalf of the entire division,” said Yoo. “For your truly genuine and unique style of leadership, you have touched the lives of every single person in this community.”

After speaking to Nicholson, Yoo then turned to address the service members standing in formation.

“To all the Marines and sailors of the division here, thank you for a memorable ceremony,” Yoo said. “I could think of no better way to say goodbye and I look forward to continuing to serve with you.”

Yoo was commissioned as a second lieutenant following completion of Officer Candidate School in March 1985 after receiving a bachelor of science degree from Arizona State University in 1984. He reported to the 1st Marine Division in 1986.

In May 1992, he was assigned duties as an inspector-instructor with the 4th Force Reconnaissance Company, the most elite troops of the U.S. Marine Corps, before earning a master’s degree in national security and strategic studies at the Naval Command and Staff College in 1998.

He also assumed the head of the Marine Expeditionary Brigade-Afghanistan in 2013 for two years.

Throughout his career, he has earned personal decorations including the Legion of Merit, Bronze Star Medal with Gold Star, Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Meritorious Service Medal with Gold Star, Joint Achievement Medal, Navy Achievement Medal and the Combat Action Ribbon.

Yoo is a Marine combatant diver, a military freefall parachutist, and a graduate of the U.S. Army Ranger School, according the 1st Marine Division.

One Comment

  1. tom

    September 2, 2015 at 8:43 PM