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Regiment blows out 90 candles

Marine Corps News

Release Date: 4/26/2004

Story by Cpl. Ryan D. Libbert

CAMP SCHWAB, Okinawa, Japan (April 16, 2004) -- Marines from the 4th Marine Regiment as well as government officials from Henoko gathered at the 4th Marines Mess Hall April 16 to recognize the regiment's 90th birthday.

Established in 1914 at Puget Sound, Wash., 4th Marines has been a part of numerous campaigns supporting both national defense and peacekeeping missions for the past 90 years.

Now located aboard Camp Schwab, the Regiment continues to support global operations such as Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom II while pausing to recognize their past accomplishments and remaining vigilant to face whatever the future will bring them.

"The source of determination for this regiment is from the individual Marines and Sailors who serve the 4th," said regimental commander Col. Drew A. Bennett during his comments at the ceremony. "I'm proud of the dedication each member has shown, it has been the hallmark of this regiment throughout the years."

The ceremony began when Marines and Sailors from Headquarters Company gathered in the mess hall for an afternoon meal. Yasumasa Oshiro, district mayor of Henoko and other local dignitaries also joined the feast not only as guests but as neighbors due to Camp Schwab's unique status as the 11th residential district of Henoko.

Bennett also gave remarks to his Marines and guests with emphasis on Marines present who were former members of the regiment claiming, "You are not guests but family because once a member of 4th Marines, always a member of 4th Marines!"

At the conclusion of the ceremony the Marines were treated to a birthday cake provided by the 4th Marines Mess Hall. As they ate and shared fellowship, the Marines also expressed how it felt serving the oldest regiment in the Corps.

"This regiment is very unique because of the UDP (unit deployment program) rotation," said Lance Cpl. Jesse A. Curiel, a 20-year-old San Antonio native who serves 4th Marines as a radio maintenance technician. "We have to support all kinds of infantry battalions who come from different backgrounds like jungle, desert and cold weather. Serving such a unique unit is something to be proud of."

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