“Oorah” to all you Devil Dogs as the U.S. Marine Corps celebrates its 248th birthday Friday.
“As we come together to celebrate our 248th birthday, I encourage every Marine to reflect on our history,” Sgt. Maj. Carlos Ruiz, the 20th sergeant major of the Marine Corps, said in a video birthday message released Nov. 1. “Think about the moment when you ask yourself, ‘Do I have what it takes?’ You are on a journey that few have dared to begin.”
A resolution passed at the Second Continental Congress meeting in Philadelphia established two battalions of Continental Marines to serve as landing forces with the Continental Navy, marking the birthdate of the U.S. Marine Corps on Nov. 10, 1775, according to Marine Corps University. The service has taken part in every U.S. war since, serving notable roles in the War of 1812, both world wars, the Korean War, the Vietnam War and more recently in Afghanistan and Iraq.
“Marines, you are the strength of our corps,” Marine Corps Commandant Gen. Eric Smith said in the video. “And your actions determine the fate of millions of future warriors and their ability to stand on your shoulders. I know that you’re ready.”
The Marine Corps’ 248th year was marked by change, with Smith officially taking over as commandant in September following a delay due to Republican Sen. Tommy Tuberville’s ongoing hold on votes to confirm hundreds of general and flag officer positions. He took over from Gen. David Berger, who stepped down in July. As commandant, Smith will help oversee the Marines’ modernization plan, Force Design 2030.