Kern County Devil Pups recognized


August 5, 2023

We are pleased to announce the Annual Devil Pups Awards Ceremony and Dinner will be held Tuesday, Aug. 8 at 5:30 p.m. for the Kern County teens who participated in this year’s Devil Pups Youth Leadership Program at Marine Corps. Base Camp Pendleton.

The event will be held at the Larry Reider Education Center, 1st floor conference room, located at 2000 K St. in Bakersfield.

The event highlights the accomplishments of these young Kern County men and women who recently graduated from the program. Participants and their parents, as well as other family members, will likely be in the audience as well. Media is invited to attend. Several local elected officials are expected to make remarks, including Major Cole Lapierre, Commanding Officer of Marine Corps Recruiting Station Los Angles, whose command covers Kern County. Chief Deputy Erik Levig of the Kern County Sheriff’s Office is scheduled to be the guest speaker. Additionally, the Lance Corporal Mason C. Parnell Award and the Deputy Phillip J. Campas Award will be presented to several exceptional teens. A representative from Chevron, the local program’s primary sponsor, is expected to be present. The entire ceremony will last approximately 45 minutes.

The Devil Pups Youth Program for America, which emphasizes “Growth Through Challenge,” founded in 1954, strives to develop in its participants qualities of good citizenship, self-control, confidence, personal discipline, teamwork and respect for others, their family and their country. Any healthy, non-delinquent boy or girl, age 14 to 17 may become a Devil Pup through a physically demanding application process. Visit for more information. United States Marines were given the name “Devil Dogs” in World War I by enemy troops they were fighting, due to their accomplishments on the battlefield and “never give up” spirit. The Devil Pups name is derived from this rich Marine Corps. history. Devil Pups live in actual Marine Corps. quarters, comply with hours and eat Marine Corps. food.

At this year’s camp, Devil Pups participated in running and other physical conditioning exercises, first aid, jumping into a swimming pool from a 25-foot tower, a bivouac, swimming, conditioning hikes in steep terrain and close order drill. Devil Pups attended educational lectures from role models on the values of leadership. They hiked up Old Smokey, an impressive mountain overlooking the Pacific Ocean. There they were issued a Challenge Coin by their instructors. The program culminated July 22 with an impressive graduation ceremony at the First Marine Division Parade Field.

Contact Kern County Devil Pups Liaison Representative Dick Taylor at (661) 332-8394 for additional information.


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