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Local Marines to celebrate 242nd birthday
November 6, 2017
They are the few, the proud. The U.S. Marines. A group, perhaps more than any other, that epitomizes loyalty, honor, service. A group that, once you join and serve, you are forevermore a part of.

Always faithful.

On Friday, November 10, the Corps celebrates its 242nd birthday, and all Boundary County Marines are invited and encouraged to attend this year's Marine Corps Ball, to be held at the Kootenai River Inn.

And organizers this year are asking for a little more from those who can; a donation so that every local Marine who would like to attend can.

"Over 14 years ago, Boundary County Marines, past, present and future, came together to start the tradition of a local celebration of our birthday," said retired Marine Corps Top Gun Fighter pilot Tim Wilson, who flew in Desert Shield and Desert Storm. "For many of the Marines living deep in the woods of North Idaho it was the only chance to remember the camaraderie of times in the past. It also served as a small measure of healing to those Marines suffering from wounds of the past, both mental and physical."

They were first called Continental Marines, a fighting force established November 1, 1775, to augment the Naval forces in the Revolutionary War, started, legend has it, with a recruiting drive at the legendary Tun Tavern in Philadelphia.

The group served with valor and distinction in helping found a new nation, but at the end of the war, as would be common in the decades ahead, both the Navy and the Marine Corps were abolished for reasons of economy.

On July 11, 1798, Congress ordered the creation of the United States Marine Corps.

The Boundary County Marine Corps birthday celebration began in 2003 at the Good Grief Tavern near the Canadian border at Eastport to a small number. Over the years the event has grown to a group averaging around 100 guests and it was eventually moved to the American Legion Hall in Bonners Ferry.

"Since the Legion Hall was sold this past year we have moved our event to the Kootenai River Inn," Wilson said. "Many of those who have attended in the past are of modest means. We have always strived to ensure that any Marine who wanted to attend could, and we would find ways to help with the cost."

Since the U.S. Marine Corps was born 242 years ago, United States Marines have fought in every conflict that's drawn U.S. arms.

Even before Boundary County was established in 1915, Boundary County citizens have stepped up and answered the nation's call, and a good share of them have become U.S. Marines, and Boundary County, Idaho, Marines have fought in every conflict the United States has been involved in since World War I.

Conversely, many Marines who served found in Boundary County a place to call home after their service, a place of beauty, of peace. Of healing.

Th November 10 celebration is not just for Marines. It is for members and veterans of all armed services and family members of those who are serving currently.

Cost of attendance for the celebration this year is $25 per person.

"I am asking for people who can to donate at least the cost of one meal for attendance at the celebration by a Marine or guest," Wilson said. "Your donation will be a reminder of the great support for the military that this outstanding community provides to those who have stood up for their country."

To help support the tradition, click here.

Social hour starts at 5 p.m. and the program and dinner will begin at 6 p.m. This year's guest speaker is Idaho First District Representative Heather Scott, who also spoke to our county's veterans on Memorial Day.

To RSVP, call (208) 267-1777. Semper Fidelis.
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