ALBANY, N.Y.--Senator David J. Valesky (D-Oneida) today announced the induction of Lieutenant Colonel Robert McLean (USMC Ret.) into the New York State Senate Veterans Hall of Fame in honor of his service to the nation and his work on behalf of veterans after leaving active service.
“Lieutenant Colonel McLean has spent his entire career in service to our military, whether it be in putting himself at great risk on the nation’s behalf in combat, communicating the important work of the Marine Corps to the media and to the public, or serving fellow vets and continuing the public affairs work that insures community support for those who, like him, have devoted their lives to our country,” Senator Valesky said. “He is a true role model and asset to our community, and I am very pleased to honor him.”
“My selection as a member of the New York State Senate Veterans’ Hall of Fame was completely unexpected,” Lieutenant Colonel McLean said. “Senator Valesky is a great friend of our nation’s veterans, and I want to thank him for this incredible honor.”
Lieutenant Colonel McLean was commissioned as a Marine Corps officer upon graduation from Syracuse University in 1972. During his career, he participated in combat support operations against communist forces in Southeast Asia, while serving as a member of VMFA-232, a Marine F-4 Phantom Squadron, in Thailand in 1973. He also served as a staff officer at Headquarters Marine Corps in Washington, as well as in both the First and Third Marine Divisions and the First Marine Aircraft Wing.
From 1976-1979, Lieutenant Colonel McLean was the Officer in Charge of the Marine Corps Officer Selection Office in Syracuse, and served as a media spokesman at the U.S. Embassy in Beirut, Lebanon, during the multinational peacekeeping operations from 1983-84. Later in his career, Lieutenant Colonel McLean was director of public affairs at the Marine Corps Recruit Depot, Parris Island, South Carolina, and Marine Corps Base, Quantico, Virginia. He handled the White House Press Corps during visits by the president of the United States before retiring from the Marine Corps in October of 1993 with 23 years of service.
Since his retirement from the military, Lieutenant Colonel McLean has served as the director of communications for Crouse Hospital, as well as the director of communications for the Greater Syracuse Chamber of Commerce. In 2008, Lieutenant Colonel McLean became the director of the Onondaga County Veterans Service Agency and, in August 2012, he was appointed to the position of public affairs officer at the Syracuse Veterans Administration Medical Center.
The New York State Senate Veterans' Hall of Fame was created in 2005 to honor and recognize outstanding veterans from the Empire State who have distinguished themselves both in military and civilian life. Their meritorious service to our nation deserves the special recognition that only a Hall of Fame can provide, as a fitting expression of our gratitude and admiration.