Kentucky Marines Celebrate 234th Anniversary of United States Marine Corps

234th USMC Anniversary Celebrations 2008

Lexington, Louisville and Fort Knox, Kentucky, November 2009: Marines throughout Kentucky, young and old, active, reserve, retired and former, gathered together to celebrate the 234th Anniversary of the United States Marine Corps at various venues. Major events commemorating this anniversary were held in Louisville and Lexington, where Colonel Ronald D. Ray, USMCR (Ret), Former Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense (Guard/Reserve), Crestwood, Kentucky and BGen David H. Berger, USMC, Director of Operations, Headquarters Marine Corps, Washington, DC served as Guests of Honor respectively. Over seven hundred Marines and their guests celebrated at a Birthday Ball sponsored by the Marine Corps Detachment, U.S. Army Armor Center, Fort Knox, Kentucky; Company E, 4th Tank Battalion, Fort Knox, Kentucky and the Marine Corps League, Kentuckiana Detachment #729, Louisville, Kentucky, held in the Grand Ballroom of the Crowne Center Louisville Airport. Another one hundred Marines from the Lexington, Kentucky area enjoyed a wonderful breakfast and a traditional bourbon whiskey toast at an early morning event, during which the Honorable James E. (Ted) Bassett III, Chairman, Marine Corps Coordinating Council of Kentucky, was honored by fellow veterans with a miniature statue of the Marine Corps’ version of the iconic “Iron Mike,” representing America’s military. In a tribute to all Marines who gave their last full measure for our nation, Fred J. Seitz (Versailles, Kentucky) offered a toast to the Corps, emotionally evoking the eloquent words of President Harry S. Truman used during World War II to commemorate the service of the fallen: “They stand in the unbroken line of patriots who have dared to die that freedom might live, and grow, and increase its blessings. Freedom lives, and through it, they live – in away that humbles the undertakings of most men.” On November 12, 2009, several members of Marine Corps League, Kentuckiana Detachament #729 (Louisville) gathered at Fort Knox to celebrate the 234th anniversary of the founding of the Marine Corps with active duty Marines assigned to the Marine Corps Detachment, commanded by LtCol Michael L. Muller, USMC. As the "oldest" Marine present, C. J. Wychulis, Commandant, Marine Corps League, Kentuckiana Detachment #729 was honored with the first piece of cake. Later, all guests were afforded a guided tour of the Apache attack helicopter unit at Fort Knox. (Additional photos in “Galleries” section courtesy of Matt Anderson, Keeneland Association; Jennie Armento; and CW4 Jack TF Pike)