Durbin Meets with Illinois Servicemember Who Will Be His Guest for the State of the Union

[WASHINGTON, DC] – U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today met with Hospital Corpsman 3rd Class (HM3) Joseph Marcinkowski from Batavia, Illinois who will be his guest for President Barack Obama’s State of the Union address later this evening.    Durbin has invited Illinois servicemembers who have served in the Iraq and Afghanistan wars as his guests to the State of the Union since 2005 when he hosted Army Major Tammy Duckworth. HM3 Marcinkowski will also attend the Secretary of the Senate’s dinner immediately preceding the President’s address. 


“I am honored to have Hospital Corpsman 3rd Class Marcinkowski as my guest to the State of the Union today,” said Durbin. “I am humbled by the bravery he has shown on the battlefield and proud that he hails from our great state of Illinois. Having given so much in service to our nation it’s only fitting that he will be part of this special moment in our nation’s history.”


Hospital Corpsman 3rd Class Joseph Marcinkowski enlisted in the United States Navy in October 2007 following his graduation from Batavia High School. Upon graduation from the Naval Hospital Corps School at Naval Station Great Lakes, HM3 Marcinkowski was assigned to Naval Hospital Okinawa Japan for two years.


HM3 Marcinkowski has served with Marine Divisions around the world including the 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit which allowed him to participate in disaster relief operations for mainland Japan following their massive earthquake and tsunami. He deployed to Helmand Province in Afghanistan in March 2012, where he conducted day to day combat operations and security patrols, as well as teaching essential skills to junior Corpsmen.


In June 2012, HM3 Marcinkowski sustained a traumatic brain injury and minor shrapnel from an Improvised Explosive Device (IED), which took the life of one of the Marines serving alongside him. He was hospitalized in Afghanistan before insisting on returning to the field alongside the other men in the unit. He completed his tour, returning to the United States in September 2012.


HM3 Marcinkowski is currently stationed at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center. He works for the Warrior Family Coordination Cell, where he receives and organizes donations from charitable organizations and individuals to benefit the wounded warriors at Walter Reed. His awards and commendations include: Purple Heart Medal; Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Award with Combat Valor Device; Combat Action Ribbon; Joint Meritorious Unit Award; Navy Unit Commendation; Navy Good Conduct Medal; and Humanitarian Service Medal.