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Agency Officers and Marines Celebrate 237th Marine Corps Birthday

Chesty the bulldog at the CIA's observance of the US Marine Corps birthday.
Chesty the bulldog at the CIA's observance of the US Marine Corps birthday.
The Director for National Intelligence (DNI) James R. Clapper, recently joined Agency officers to celebrate the 237th birthday of the United States Marine Corps with a traditional cake cutting ceremony. Among those in attendance were Associate Director for Military Affairs Lt. Gen. Kurt Cichowski, Deputy Director of the National Clandestine Service for Community HUMINT Maj. Gen. Richard Lake, Marines from the Marine Barracks Washington, Agency employees who have served in the Marines, and the Marines' mascot, Chesty the bulldog.

As the guest of honor, DNI Clapper shared his memories of being a Marine before being commissioned in the United States Air Force in 1963. DNI Clapper recalled the pride he felt at being called a Marine for the first time. “My time as a Marine was brief, but very important, very impactful, and it helped shape who I am today. Though brief, it was profound, and it changed my life just as it has for every Marine who has served.”

DNI Clapper also praised the relationship between the CIA and the Marine Corps. “There are many CIA officers who answer our nation’s call to duty, a call reflected in both the U.S. Marine Corps and the Central Intelligence Agency,” he said. “I thank all of you for the critical, and often unsung, role that you play. You are the intersection of the two phenomenal organizations, both of which are critical to America’s success and safety.”

The cake cutting ceremony was the highlight of the celebration. According to Marine Corps tradition, the cake is cut with a sword to remind all Marines that they defend the nation.

Following Marine tradition, the first piece of cake was presented to the guest of honor, DNI Clapper. Representing the honor and respect shown to senior members of the Marine Corps, the second piece of cake went to the oldest Marine in attendance, a former CIA officer who was born in 1927 and joined the Marine Corps in 1945. Finally, the third piece of cake was presented to the youngest Marine at the celebration, a Marine who was born in 1993 and joined the Marine Corps in 2011. This signifies the trust and confidence in young Marines who will carry on the Marine Corps tradition.

The celebration closed with “Anchors Aweigh,” the Marines’ Hymn, and an enthusiastic “Semper Fidelis!” and “Happy 237th Birthday!” to all Marines present.

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Posted: Dec 06, 2012 08:43 AM
Last Updated: Apr 30, 2013 01:03 PM