Thursday, November 10, 2005

Happy 230th Birthday, Marines!

As a proud member of the Marine blog challenge team, under the inspired leadership of Holly Aho, I want to wish all active and former Marines Happy Birthday!

Here are the blogs of just a few active and former Marines so you can visit and leave a Birthday greeting:
The Gun Line
One Marine's View
Straight White Guy
Drunken Wisdom
Adventures of Chester
Grim's Hall
The Word Unheard
Major Mike
Halls to the Shores
Evangelical Outpost
Grendel's Dragon
Random Firings
Stacking Swivel
Flight Pundit
Social Sense
Daisy Cutter

The US Postal Service is giving the Marines a birthday gift ...

Distinguished Marines

In honor of the 230th anniversary of the United States Marine Corps, the U.S. Postal Service is scheduled to release the U.S. Marine Corps Heritage Collection of four distinguished Corps postage stamps.

The Distinguished Marine Stamps honor four of the most reputable Marine Corps war heroes including Gunnery Sgt. John Basilone, Sgt. Maj. Daniel J. Daly, Lt. Gen. John A. Lejuene and Lt. Gen. Lewis B. "Chesty" Puller.

Purchase of the stamps will be available exclusively on Marine Corps installations Nov. 10 at $7.40 for a book of 20 stamps. Other post offices will begin sale of the stamps on Nov. 11.

Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton, Calif., and Marine Barracks, Washington, D.C., are scheduled to host the unveiling ceremonies Nov. 10. Brig. Gen. Michael Lehnert, Commanding General Marine Corps Installations West, is scheduled to speak at the West Coast event.
(H/T to Wild Thing)

This is a fine idea, and the timing is wonderful with Veteran's Day on Friday. Keep in mind that not all heroes get their faces printed on a stamp, though. Capt B reminds us about the nature of the Real American Hero ...

The title of veteran is a term of great respect due to the patriotism, willingness to serve, and dedication to a larger cause. As the holiday approaches if nothing else Americans should remember the vets who made this country what it is today. I stand in front of a unit’s memorial board here in Iraq. A wall of warriors killed in action. I stare at the many fallen Marines, Soldiers, Sailors and Airmen, many so young and full of life, determined and brave. I stare at the memorial walls and a silent crowded wall stares back at me holding me accountable to complete the job we were sent here to do. They gave their all. It’s a shame we cant display all of the pictures from all of the battles that show these brave men so people could see who was number 7 and who was number 2001. So people can feel the eyes of men and women looking at them and telling them so much without saying a word.

Their faces wind torn and chapped, uniforms faded from the hot sun, body armor stained with sweat marks, dirt and smoke. Many of them serving multiple tours defending America and freedom, not only in Iraq and Afghanistan but places like Omaha Beach, Iwo Jima and Vietnam. Some people don’t support war for whatever reason but I ask all of you to respect the warriors for the person they are, no the American that they are and always will be. For the fact that which ever war they fought in, they fought bravely. Some are gone now. Some never made it home but many are still with us. Some people on that wall may have wondered what would be said about them once they are gone. As on that wall, many names reside on the black Vietnam memorial wall in DC and the many walls, memorials to come which hold words of gratitude and honor, strength, determination and hope.

There's more - go read it, and leave the Captain encouraging words while you're at it. He knows why he's in Iraq, let him know you understand.