With the recent passing of the US Army Birthday on June 14th, I took the opportunity to tell a couple of Army “joes” with us “Happy Birthday”. Their response, it’s interesting that I have to learn it’s our birthday from a Marine. I didn’t expect that. I thought they would know their birthday. I thought they would celebrate it, but they didn’t, they didn’t even know it was their birthday.
I’m not bagging on the Army not knowing their birthday. However, you can ask any Marine, a recruit or a WWII vet when the Marine Corps Birthday is and he will tell you Nov 10, 1775. The difference in my opinion between the other services and the Marine Corps and celebrating their birthday is simple, Marines make an important day. We make it important because we cherish it. Not just one or two or a few Marines, but all Marines cherish our birthday.
Regardless where we are on our birthday, we celebrate it. Regardless if we are in Washington DC or Helmand province. One way or another, we celebrate it. I have seen a small group of three Marines assemble together and celebrate it. Why because there wasn’t four of them. If you haven’t ever attended a Marine Ball, GO. There is no other place where our Nations heroes don their famous dress blue uniforms, their magnificent ladies wear their evening gowns with pride and both are treated like royalty all night. Usually when there is a birthday ball conducted, the Marine Corps Commandants message is read, a formal display of Marines from the past is conducted, and a piece of birthday cake is shared between the oldest Marine attending and the youngest Marine attending. This shows the passing of traditions from one Marine to another. We Marines are big on traditions. Note, celebrating the Marine Corps birthday come hell or shine.
After the formal part of the birthday ball is over, nowhere else will you witness a band of brothers more stronger. Many non Marine guests reserve their tickets months in advance, many guests are taken back by what is witnessed during the event and every Marine young & old celebrates his birthday until they day he dies. This is why the Marine Corps birthday is different. We are Marines. Come join us this Nov, you won’t forget it. Semper Fidelis and Happy Birthday Army!