As I spend my very last Navy Birthday while I am still Active Duty, I have been reflecting on how much has changed. I am not only talking about from 1775 to now, but also in the 23 years I have been part of her ranks. I do have love for all services of the U.S. Military, but to me there is something special about the Navy, something that sets her apart. I think I would have felt like this even if I had never taken the oath of Enlistment so many years ago. Even if you have only been on a lake in a fishing boat, or only stood on a sandy beach looking out into the vast ocean, I think you can begin to understand what I am talking about. Now, add to that feeling of serenity the power of a mighty warship, the rush of Naval Aviation, the flight of a Tomahawk missile, or the precision strike of a team of Navy SEALs, and it becomes more than an adventure. Yes, this feeling gets deep into your bones, right to the heart of a Sailor’s soul. So much has changed in 238 years, and even in the last 23, but the Honor Courage and Commitment to train combat-ready Naval forces capable of winning wars, deterring aggression, and maintaining freedom of the seas will remain. I am proud to have been a Sailor and I am proud to be a Naval Officer in the finest Navy in the world.
Happy Birthday to the Sailors who have come before us and to the Sailors who serve today and God Bless the United States Navy forevermore.