COLUMBUS, Ohio –
Jon Ferguson trained for four months – covering roughly 400 miles – to prepare himself for a big moment in late October. The Marine Corps veteran and current Defense Logistics Agency Land and Maritime associate completed the Marine Corps Marathon Oct. 27 in Washington, D.C. It was Ferguson’s first time running the race and second marathon ever.
Now in its 44th year, the Marine Corps Marathon is one of the largest marathons in the U.S. and holds the distinction of being the largest marathon in the world that doesn’t offer prize money – earning it the nickname “The People’s Marathon,” according to the event release.
Finishing with a time of just over five hours, Ferguson said his goal wasn’t to be fast – rather it was to honor fallen Marines he served with in his 16-year Marine Corps career.
His first marathon – the 2017 Air Force Marathon – was in honor of his father, Chief Master Sgt. David Ferguson. His latest race honored 38 fallen service members from two Infantry units in the Camp Pendleton, California-based 1st Marine Division. Ferguson served in the division’s 3rd Battalion, 1st Marine Regiment and 2nd Battalion, 4th Marine Regiment, in addition to completing several deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan.
After concluding his military career, Ferguson transitioned to federal service and currently works as a business opportunities specialist with DLA Land and Maritime’s Office of Small Business Programs at the Defense Supply Center Columbus. The veteran said he applies his military background to his civilian specialty.
“I work in an extremely dynamic organization with a critical mission that supports the warfighter and small businesses,” Ferguson said. “We use massive amounts of data, various forms of media and interpersonal communications to achieve our goals as an office, major subordinate command and an enterprise.”
To do that, Ferguson said it’s often not about reinventing the wheel or “building a better mousetrap” as he likes to say. It’s about teamwork.
“Always consider how to leverage available resources using an outside-the-box approach,” he explained. “And if you identify a way to work smarter and not harder – do it and show others how.”
Ferguson said he’s not sure what’s next for him on the racing front now that he’s completed his marathon goal. He may pursue smaller races but for the moment he’s simply enjoying life and the pride of a mission accomplished.