Nineteenth Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (CJCS) Marine Gen. Joseph F. Dunford Jr. retired from military service in the USS Constitution Museum with ceremonial support from USS Constitution’s crew, Oct. 11.
The CJCS is the nation’s highest-ranking military officer, and the principal military advisor to the President, Secretary of Defense, and National Security Council.
Prior to becoming Chairman, Dunford served as the 36th Commandant of the Marine Corps, and he has served 42 years in the military.
“What an honor it has been to serve alongside you, and to represent you here in Washington, D.C., and across the globe,” Dunford said in a recent farewell video message to the military. “It’s because of you that I am confident that we can defend the homeland and our way of life. It’s because of you that we have earned the trust and confidence of allies and partners around the world. It’s because of you that people believe in America.”
USS Constitution is the world’s oldest commissioned warship afloat, and is deeply connected to U.S. Marine Corps Heritage.
The Naval Act of 1794 mandated the ship’s original crew include 50 Marines, and the line in the Marine Corps’ hymn “… to the shores of Tripoli…” comes from the Barbary War, where USS Constitution’s Navy and Marine Corps team fought together over land and sea to secure peace.
Additionally, Brig. Gen. Archibald Henderson, the U.S. Marine Corps 5th Commandant (nicknamed the ‘Grand Old Man of the Marine Corps’), served aboard USS Constitution during the battle with HMS Cyane and HMS Levant. He was decorated for bravery and gallantry in battle during the War of 1812.
USS Constitution is designated America’s Ship of State, and her active-duty Navy crew engage in community outreach and education about the Navy’s history and the importance of naval power to more than 500,000 visitors each year.
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