Hampton Bays School District has a mission: to bring history to life.
In order to do this, they honor a local veteran every month of the school year and fly an American flag in their honor. For the month of May, the district chose to honor Marine Corps veteran, Daniel Stebbins.
Stebbins was born in April of 1966 in Auburn, New York and grew up in the hamlet of Half Acre in Aurelius, where he attended school. He graduated in 1984 and joined the Marines in 1986.
Following training, Stebbins was assigned to the 2nd Marine Division, 3rd Battalion, 8th Marines, India Company, 2nd Weapons Platoon, 2nd Squad. In 1990, Corporal Stebbins was sent to Saudi Arabia on a C-141 Starlifter cargo plane and was assigned to 2nd Combat. Operation Desert Storm began four months later, and Stebbins and his unit fought against Iraqi mechanized and armored units as part of the biggest enemy tank destruction in Marine Corps history.
Prior to being reassigned to Camp Lejeune in August 1991, Stebbins patrolled Kuwait City as part of a multinational peacekeeping force. He was discharged from active duty a month after his return in September 1991.
Stebbins holds a bachelor’s degree in electronics from ITT Technical Institute and an Associate of Arts in mechanical engineering from the University of North Florida. In 1996, he moved with his family to Hampton Bays and began work as a technical service engineer with a government contracting company at Plum Island and with Brookhaven National Laboratory.
A ceremony was held to honor Stebbins on May 25 at Hampton Bays Elementary School, which ended with the symbolic raising of the flag. Other memorable parts of the ceremony included a performance by the Hampton Bays High School jazz band and speeches by local officials, including Congressman Lee Zeldin. Superintendent of Schools Lars Clemensen says, “The district is proud to honor Mr. Stebbins for his bravery and service to the United States.”