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U.S. Marine Corps Sgt. Erin Vandehoef, a combat videographer with Communication Strategy and Operations, Headquarters and Support Battalion, Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton, opens a post office box at the 11 Area military post office at MCB Camp Pendleton. Photo by Lance Cpl. Mhecaela Watts.

Camp Pendleton opens new post office

CAMP PENDLETON — Service members residing in the barracks on Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton will now have direct access to their mail and other postage opportunities after the base opened a new military post office in the 11 Area on April 2.

The addition of the post office supports and expands on the mission of the MCI-West Camp Pendleton Consolidated Postal System in acceptance and delivery of official and personal mail addressed to military commands, agencies, authorized civilian organizations and service members at Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton.

According to base communications, operation of this new facility will not only increase morale but will help to maintain the Marine Corps’ lethal edge by supporting and investing in top talent.

“It will be a huge morale builder because it allows [service members] to receive their mail quickly,” said Master Sgt. Mario Lute, the postal finance officer of the MCI-West Consolidated Postal System.

The new post office in Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton’s 11 Area will largely benefit Marines living in the barracks on base. Photo by Lance Cpl. Mhecaela Watts.

The service members residing in the barracks are a major factor for expanding postal services on base. Expansion within the 11 Area is especially important because it supports multiple units in one locale such as Headquarters and Support, 9th Communication, 1st Intelligence, and 1st Radio Battalions.

It is important these Marines have easy access to a mail facility, especially those who do not have personal vehicles. New post offices on base not only improve troop welfare, but also enhance efficiency with new innovative features.

New features include 24/7 access to P.O. boxes and parcel lockers, email notification of package arrival and swift pick up by simply scanning an ID.

“The Marines are now getting the same service that any person who lives in base housing or in the surrounding communities would get,” said U.S. Marine Corps Chief Warrant Officer 4 Christopher Heltebran, the postal director of the MCI-West and I Marine Expeditionary Force Consolidated Postal Systems.

U.S. Marine Corps Sgt. Jeremy Echols, left, a postal service noncommissioned officer with Headquarters and Support Battalion, helps Lance Cpl. Adrian Estrada, a combat videographer with Communication Strategy and Operations, HQSPT Bn., at the 11 Area military post office at MCB Camp Pendleton. Photo by Lance Cpl. Mhecaela Watts

This new addition also benefits Marines and their units because they won’t have to rely on unit mailrooms to pick up, deliver and sort their mail, allowing administrative specialists to conduct other administrative tasks for their assigned military occupational specialty.

In the future, more MPOs with P.O. boxes and parcel lockers are planned for buildings in different areas across Camp Pendleton to include the 21, 22, 41, 53 and 62 Areas.

“The most memorable part about this project was witnessing the transformation of the room,” Lute said. “It started as an unoccupied room of barber chairs and wires and ended as a full-fledged receptacle center where Marines can receive mail 24 hours a day.”

Story by Lance Cpl. Mhecaela Watts.

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