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William Jordan receives an American flag from retired Brig. Gen. Leif Hendrickson during his retirement ceremony March 25 at The Clubs of Quantico aboard Marine Corps Base Quantico. The Jacksonville, North Carolina native retired March 24 after 55 years at the Mainside Central Barbershop.

Photo by Ida Irby

Barber lays down clippers after 55 years

31 Mar 2016 | Ida Irby Marine Corps Base Quantico

William Jordan was honored in an official retirement ceremony March 25 at The Clubs of Quantico aboard Marine Corps Base Quantico. The dedicated military barber recently retired after 55 years at the Mainside Central Barbershop.

After witnessing more than half a century on the installation the seasoned barber hung up his clippers. Jordan missed only 2 days in 15,000 consecutive workdays since arriving aboard the base at 21-years-old from Jacksonville, North Carolina.

“He has exemplified reliability, dependability and accountability,” said guest speaker and close friend retired Brig. Gen. Leif Hendrickson.

Jordan was recognized for his patriotism and commitment, having cut the hair of Marines ranging from private to the commandant of the Marine Corps. He accepted an American flag flown aboard Marine Corps Base Quantico, awards from Col. Joseph Murray, base commander, and even some gifts from an unnamed command sergeant major.

“I feel like I am a Marine,” Jordan told the hall packed with more than 200 members of the community. “From boot camp up to retirement, I have worn your rank. Because, when you get promoted, I get promoted. [The Marine Corps] is a family I wish everyone could have.”

At the end of his career, Jordan was proud to ask his grandson to stand and be recognized as the next generation to serve in the Marine Corps. His wife Velma Jordan was also recognized as he spoke of his family, which includes two sons, six daughters and 14 grandchildren.

“Listening to him talk to Marines is like being in a leadership class and at times, church,” said Hendrickson. “He is more than a barber, he is a philosopher, a counselor, a teacher, a leader and our friend. His love for Marines is resolute and his wisdom and counsel is equal to the most senior and successful commanders in our force.”

— Writer: iirby@quanticosentryonline.com

Marine Corps Base Quantico