I just celebrated my 40th Marine Corps Birthday at Camp Victory, Iraq.
To make a long story short, I served as an enlisted Marine 1967-1973 and after an eight year break joined the National Guard to get a commission and have been in every since. I've had several active tours since 9/11 and most recently with the Army Operations Center at the Pentagon and I came to Iraq as HQDA LNO to MNC-I.
Marine Corps 232nd Birthday in Iraq – 10 Nov 2007
In the afternoon, the Marines put on a great cake cutting ceremony that was attended by all branches of service. They had a Marine color guard, band, and of course a great motivational speech by the senior Marine, MajGen Paxton The youngest Marine was a female lance corporal and the oldest was a older looking Major who was serving as a Marine retiree recall and he was dressed in an older era uniform.
That night the general hosted a dinner at his house for all Marines, past and present, and when desert time came, he gave another great speech and said now we want to find the "real" youngest and oldest Marines to cut the cake. The female lance corporal was replaced by a younger male lance corporal. The older Marine announced his birthday and the General asked for any Marine present that was older. I raised my hand and told him my birth date and that I graduated from Parris Island as a Marine in 1967. See attached, the oldest Marine waiting to get the first piece of cake is wearing an Army uniform (Me).
OOH-RAH and Semper Fidelis,
THOMAS W. SIMPSON
MNC-I C3 PLANS / HQDA G-3 LNO