Camp Courtney, Okinawa, Japan --
CAMP COURTNEY, OKINAWA, Japan - U.S. Marines with 3rd Marine Expeditionary Brigade celebrated the 245th Marine Corps birthday with a cake cutting ceremony here, Nov. 13, 2020.
“The significance of the ceremony is to recognize traditions and the history of our branch, while at the same time allowing the Marines time to set their minds and hearts to the future of the Corps and our country,” said Capt. Keith B. Elliot, deputy G-1, 3rd MEB.
The ceremony is steeped in tradition, featuring the reading of Gen. John A. Lejeune’s birthday message and the passing of cake from the oldest Marine present to the youngest. The passing of the cake symbolizes the knowledge and traditions being passed down through the generations of Marines.
“It’s important for the Marine Corps to have traditions so that every Marine remembers where we came from and the history of the Marine Corps,” said Cpl. Edward Gutierrez, a rifleman with 3rd MEB. “As the youngest Marine present, it’s an honor to be a part of the ceremony and to be celebrating with not only the Marines out here, but remembering the Marines that came before me.”
The ceremony finished with a message from the 3rd MEB Commanding General, Brig. Gen. Kyle B. Ellison, who said, “I am honored and humbled to be able to fight alongside each and every one of you. I hope you all walk out of here today, as we do every year, reminded of the fact that you do more than a million Americans will ever do, and that is giving to a cause much greater than yourselves by being in the Marine Corps and being forward deployed with our MEF. For that, you should be proud, you should be honored, and you should recognize that you are a part of something very special.”