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Marines mark anniversary during breakfast
Marine Birthday TOP
Marine Col. Al Cruz, left, presents the oldest and the youngest Marines present Thursday morning with the first pieces of cake in the anniversary celebration. John Treanpos, right, of Tracy was treated first followed by the younger Jerid Schmidt, currently an officer candidate in the Corps. - photo by GLENN KAHL/The Bulletin

The Marine Corps has celebrated its 239th birthday  during a breakfast at the Spring Creek Country Club on Thursday.

U.S. Navy Captain Chuck Roots, retired, was responsible for organizing the event only days before today’s (Nov. 10) official birthday of the Corps. The gathering featured the Ripon High JROTC staging unarmed and armed drill demonstrations in the club dining room

A full breakfast was offered buffet style to retirees and current members of the Corps and their guests for the event that is celebrated at Marine functions all over the world.

The guest of honor was retired Colonel Al Cruz, USMC, who presented the keynote address at the end of the hour and a half gathering overlooking the greens of the 18-hole course.

The JROTC cadets also performed an armed drill team presentation that involved tossing their M-1 rifles across the room to each other in precision movements.  An unarmed drill team followed of six cadet women dressed in red and black wearing ceremonial western hats bringing the applause of their honored guests.

The JROTC presented the colors at the opening of the birthday celebration as the retired Marines stood at attention.  The National Anthem was sung by Sarah Hall that preceded a prayer by Capt. Chuck Roots and offered for those in uniform past and present who have defended their country in times of conflict.

Colonel Cruz cut the birthday cake at the front of the room and offered the traditional first piece to John Treanpos, of Tracy, the most senior retired Marine at the event.  Following tradition, the second piece went to Jerid Schmidt who is currently an Officer Candidate.

Following the cake cutting the entire room of Marines rose to their feet and sung the Marine’s Hymn.