As I said, the ceremony was nearing its end when I arrived and there was a prayer and then "God Bless America" was sung, accompanied by Bill's Little Big Band. It is so sad to see the World War II vets so old and crippled.
Then the band played the service songs of the Coast Guard (I don't believe I'd ever heard this one before), Air Force, Navy, Marine Corps and Army. I was also happy to hear (also for the first time) the song of the U.S. Merchant Marine.
I am very happy to see the Merchant Marine finally getting the recognition they so much deserve because of the important role they played in the war. I am sure floating around in U-boat infested waters (often in the frigid North Atlantic) in a ship loaded with ammunition or oil is not my idea of a pleasure cruise.
Jacob Zeilen, USMC Commandant-- Part 1: Long Career
13 hours ago