MARINE CORPS AIR GROUND COMBAT CENTER TWENTYNINE PALMS, California -- The crowd of spectators swelled with anticipation as a formation of Marines, dressed in pristine blue dress uniforms and brandishing M1 Garand rifles, took the field. As the platoon commenced their unique precision drill routine, no verbal commands were necessary and only a cadence of acute clacks from the rifles broke their silence.
The Silent Drill Platoon, Marine Corps Drum and Bugle Corps, and the Official Marine Corps Color Guard comprise the Marine Corps Battle Color Detachment and performed during a Battle Color Ceremony at Lance Cpl. Torrey L. Gray Field March 9, 2016.
The detachment of more than 100 Marines travels worldwide to demonstrate several key traits of United States Marines, to include discipline, dedication and bearing.
“I really love seeing ceremonies like this because it epitomizes the Esprit de Corps and morale of our branch,” said Cpl. Jamar Hodge, awards clerk, Installation Personnel Administration Center. “Being able to see them perform is a great opportunity because it shows the level of discipline a Marine can reach.”
The Drum and Bugle Corps, also known as ‘The Commandant’s Own,’ began the ceremony with selections composed by Italian composer and musicologist, Ottorino Respighi, accompanied by complex and precise formation movements.
“I think it’s a great experience,” said Marisa McDonald, military spouse. “I home school my seven-year-olds so it’s really cool for them to be able to see this side of the Marine Corps and then get up close and interact with the Marines.”
For the climax of the ceremony, the Marine Corps Color Guard presented the battle colors adorned with streamers and silver bands, which symbolize the 54 military campaigns and more than 400 battles in which the Marine Corps has played a role throughout history. The ceremony concluded with the Marines of the detachment remaining on the field to greet those in attendance.
“I love coming out, talking with the people and being able to represent a positive image for the Marine Corps,” said Lance Cpl. Megan Almojuela, soprano bugler, Marine Corps Drum and Bugle Corps. “It’s great to show people something fantastic that they may only get one chance to see in their lives.”
The Marines with the Battle Color Detachment are scheduled to continue their tour and will move on to Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton, Marine Corps Air Station Yuma and Marine Corps Recruit Depot San Diego in the days to come.