PEKIN, Ill. — The Pekin Post Office was officially renamed in honor of fallen Marine, Lance Corporal Jordan Bastean.
Wednesday morning, the community celebrated in a special ceremony.
Bastean died in 2011 at age 19 while serving on his first deployment in Afghanistan. His mom, Kathy Bastean, wanted to ensure he wasn’t forgotten.
“He’s an only child, so he doesn’t really have the legacy of siblings, and he wasn’t married. He didn’t have children, so I was looking for something that was a permanent legacy for him. I found that you can do the post office, and I was really excited to do that,” said Kathy.
The three-year process wasn’t easy. A bill to rename Pekin’s post office had to pass through the House, the senate and get the President’s signature.
Fellow Marines who served with Bastean came from all over the country to see this moment.
“Not only was Jordan an outstanding Marine, but he was an even better friend. I can recall times when me and my friend Jacob were broken down in the middle of the desert and the first person that we thought to call was Jordan,” said Nicholas Bauer.
Congresswoman Cheri Bustos (D-Ill.) hosted the ceremony where she unveiled the plaque and presented the official legislation. She said it was an honor to witness this moment.
“We actually celebrate the fact that Jordan Bastean served our country, fought for our democracy and at the fragile age of 19 gave his life for all of us standing here,” said Bustos.
Basteen was in the JROTC program in high school and family members said he had always wanted to be a Marine because according to him, “they are the toughest.”