Monday, November 10, 2008

happy birthday devil dogs

The Marines I have seen around the world have the cleanest bodies, the filthiest minds, the highest morale, and the lowest morals of any group of animals I have ever seen. Thank God for the United States Marine Corps!
Eleanor Roosevelt, First Lady of the United States, 1945

Today I take a break from my normal posts to honor the few, the proud. To my brothers and sisters, past and present. Happy Birthday Marines!

233 years ago today on November 10, 1775, the Continental Congress passed a resolution stating that "two Battalions of Marines be raised". Since then Marines have participated in every major battle, in every clime and place with honor, courage and commitment.

To me this day, this birthday, holds more importance to me than my own. I don't say that with bravado or ego, I say it because I could never pay back what the Corps provided to me.

Each year I recall a day in mid July 1984. I had been in bootcamp for about a month by that point and still had 2 more to go before earning the Eagle, Globe and Anchor. I was standing alone outside the chow hall waiting for the rest of my platoon. I was nothing more than a sorry ass, beaten down lump of shit. It was by far my lowest point ever. I didn't trust that I knew my name, I didn't trust that I knew where I came from. I felt as though I had been ripped down to my core, I literally had nothing left.

Except for one thing. I wanted to be a Marine more than ever.

On that day, literally at that moment, I knew I had been broken. I realized from that point forward I would never be the same.

I know the Corps isn't for everyone and I know some fellow Marines may not have hit the depths I discovered that day, but for me it's what has helped define me as a person ever since. For that I will be forever in debt to my beloved Corps and fellow Marines.

Tonight I will find a bar, toast a few to my leatherneck brothers and sisters, think about that day and the sacrifices of the hero's who paid the highest price so we could live free.
I haven't missed a birthday toast in the past 24 years and I know I will continue till the day I wear my dress blues for the last time.... even if they do have to split it up the back to make it fit.

Semper Fi Marines, carry on!
Good night Chesty, wherever you are.


Colleen said...


PlancksPost said...


ReformingGeek said...

Nice! I was starting to feel sorry for the left-right confused Pyle on the video. ;-)

dadthedude said...

@ colleen - oorah!
@ planckspost - oorah!
@ reformingGeek - I may have seen that movie about 20 times.. and yet to feel sorry for him. I knew someone that was kinda like him, I didnt know him long since he was gone in 2 weeks.

Dan Brantley said...

Thanks Dude said...

The Marines - first ones in, last ones out.

I was in college when the Gulf War began. I tried to join the Marines, but was denied, due to my hearing loss.

But I will always be proud of our country's military!

Dad to Two said...

Even though I am an Army Veteran, I have a deep respect for the Marines and all they do for our country. Happy Birthday Marine Corps.


Traci Skene said...

Never call a Marine an ex-marine. They are former Marines. (Am I right on this one?)

I performed at 29 Palms a few years ago and one of the comics mistakenly called the Marines "soldiers." The hostile roar from the crowd almost brought the building down. It was one of the funniest yet most frightening things I have ever seen.

AngieSS said...

Dude, great post and to all Marines -- Happy Birthday!

p.s. I loved the Eleanor Roosevelt quote.

Heinous said...

Great post!

Colleen said...

Dude, thought you'd appreciate this article.

dadthedude said...

@ Dan - thank you

@ PaulsHealthBlog - sorry about your hearing loss. Thank you, those in uniform need your support now more than ever.

@ dadtotwo - your our other leg. Would be difficult to stand without each other. Thanks for your service.

@traci - I spent some time in 29 stumps and yes... you NEVER call a Marine an Ex-Marine and certainly not a soldier. I can only imagine the response that would have brought. Good thing they weren't serving drinks or you would have seen a riot.

@angiess - thank you. thats one of my favorite quotes. Ronald Reagan has a great one as well.

@heinous - you better be flying a flag tomorrow or I'll be knocking on your door.

@colleen - thanks for the link. What a great story! I'd love to participate in something like that.

RRsis said...

Happy Birthday Dude..I heard you brought the lights down! :-)

MeadowLark said...

Hey, this jarhead must have been at the bar when you posted this, for I didn't see it.

Semper Fi, brother.

And never forget:
Women Marines. Fewer. Prouder.

teee heeee :)

richard said...


You will be happy to know that I am over in the desert now and celebrated teh Marine Corps Birthday by running a 5k on base here.

Meadowlark said...

FYI: (always late, I know) YoungSon enlisted... OOH RAH! The pride continues :)