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Department of the Navy AND Marine Corps?

I have a question.

Why is there no mention of the Marine Corps in the department we fall under?

Congressman Walter Jones asked the same question and took action by presenting legislation to the House of Representatives.  The proposal was simple:  change the name of the Department of the Navy to the “Department of the Navy and Marine Corps.” As simple as it sounds, it’s been nine years and Rep. Jones is still pushing for the bill to be passed.

Is it really too much to ask for?  Congressman Jones and the bill’s supporters, including R. Lee Ermey, the Marine Corps League, Col. Oliver North, and hundreds more only want one thing – equal recognition.  When a soldier gives his life in combat, a letter from the Secretary of the Army is sent to his family.  When a sailor gives his life in combat, a letter from the Secretary of the Navy is sent to his family.  When a Marine gives his life in combat, which many have done in some of the most famous battles of our country’s history, a letter from the Secretary of the Navy is sent to his family.  Why is there no representation for the branch under which he fought, for the honorable title he earned?

Looking at this issue objectively, the Navy and the Marine Corps are two separate branches of the military serving under one department. Why not have equal representation in the department name?  It only makes sense.

As a Marine, I am very passionate when I say, “Are you kidding me?  nine years to change something that should’ve been changed decades ago? I didn’t go to the Navy’s recruiting office three years ago, I walked straight to the Marines.”  I have nothing but love for my Navy brethren.  They provide the ships that move us, docs who treat us and chaplains who pray for us.  We have great history serving together but all the while, sailors have been sailors and Marines have been Marines.  Passing this bill and changing the name would not weaken our relationship with each other, rather, with equal recognition, it would strengthen us as a team and display to the world that we work together.  The Navy has our back and we have theirs.

This bill isn’t about who gets funds allocated to them and who doesn’t. It’s not about splitting from the team, rather, solidifying us as the worlds’ most deadly duo.  What really matters is that this name change to “The Department of the Navy and Marine Corps” would finally give the fallen Marines and their families the recognition that they deserve from the country they lived for, fought for and died for.

For more information on the bill, visit House Resolution 24.

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26 Responses

  1. Luis Guevara says:

    well sead and im in that one with u….the department of the marine corps….. if you look at the old marine flag… it says department of the navy marine corps… now if u look at the new on they leaft aside department of the navy…. and it only says UNITED STATES MARINE CORPS… why is that.. i’ll tell u why because the MARINES wer r and will always be the best air land and sea …. UNITED STATES MARINES…. MUCH LOVE

  2. Anonymous says:

    If your son became a U.S. Navy Seal through the Marines, who should you get the letter from?, There are different jobs in every Department, I’m glad for your son and his commitment and service to our country but when we are all in the fight why should that matter, meritorious or not?

  3. g-rat says:

    butt hurt much?

  4. Mitch802 says:

    Plain and simple.  Because it IS Department of the Navy!  The ONLY reason the Marines want this is an ego trip as if it is some sort of slight being under Department of the Navy.  Quit trying to change it.  You join the Marines then you are also joining a proud Tradition which includes but not limited to Department of the Navy.  If you don’t like it then join another damned force.  Quit your whining Marines.  So sick of the talk and insults.  I didn’t join the military to hear whining from ANY soldier nor did every other member of my family.  You ARE what you ARE!  Quit wasting taxpayer time and money on your ego trips.  You are men and women of honor and speak of tradition.  Quit trying to cut out a part of it.  If Washington wants it to happen then they will…and by the way.  The Navy does one hell of a lot more than just provide you rides on the ships and medics.  The Navy also has more airplanes than ANY other force and the Navy and Marines are a group and NOT separate.  They work interdependently with one another. 

  5. Anonymous says:

    Not when the Navy signs your paychecks Devil Dog

  6. Updike says:

    From one Soldier to a Marine – Well Said!

  7. Updike says:

    From one Soldier to a Marine – Well Said!

  8. Updike says:

    From one Soldier to a Marine – Well Said!

  9. Updike says:

    Ryan is right on the money!  There are larger issues to address.  Whats next the Dept of the Navy & Marines & Navy Resv & the Coast Guard?

  10. Updike says:

    Ryan is right on the money!  There are larger issues to address.  Whats next the Dept of the Navy & Marines & Navy Resv & the Coast Guard?

  11. Updike says:

    Ryan is right on the money!  There are larger issues to address.  Whats next the Dept of the Navy & Marines & Navy Resv & the Coast Guard?

  12. Mitch802 says:

    The Marine Corps talks of tradition all the while trying to shun the Navy as if were some lesser contributing force.  Ultimately the Marine Corps IS and more than likely will always be a part of the Department of the Navy.  You do not have to like it but you do have to accept it and hopefully respect it otherwise you take away from many Naval servicemen who gave their life.  I do not personally have an issue with ANY service member or branch.  They are all equal in my book and all contribute in the same and in different ways as well which should all be respected. 

    If you are truly proud of your service then you should be proud to say equally that you are a Marine.  Who is proudly part of the U.S. Navy.  Makes us together the largest U.S. Military force combined.  Not a bad thing at all to be part of as well.

    If you are going to be part of a tradition.  Then be proud of it as a whole and not just pick and choose the parts you wish to acknowledge. 

  13. Seagate says:

    Why not call it what it is – The Department of Naval Forces?

  14. Seagate says:

    Why not call it what it is – The Department of Naval Forces?

  15. Tracey Moran says:

    When my son joined the Marine Corp I received letters from the Marine Corp thanking me for allowing my son to join. (He was underage). It was on Marine Corp letterhead. I would expect the same if they were to send me a letter for ANY reason. He didn’t join the Navy, he joined the Marine Corp and although its a dept of the Navy……it is quite different. My family were all Navy and I worked for the Navy for years so it’s not that I am slighted against the Navy. They are awesome. The Marine Corp just stands out and is trained quite differently and they are the Elite for a reason. They deserve to receive a letter from MARINE CORP for any reason.

  16. Daniel Lawson says:

    On the one hand the Marine Corps deserves to be on equal footing and on the other there is tradition. However I think that when a letter is sent to a family informing that family of the honorable death of their son or daughter it shouldn’t come from DoN it should come from CMC. That would solve both issues, but personally I think it should change and we should have a Marine General in voting possition.

  17. GYSGT KESL says:


    The Marines do have a sitting member of the Joint Chiefs, his name is General Cartwright, he is the Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. He has held this position since Sept 2, 2007. Additionally, it is technically the second highest ranking military officer in the armed forces. Prior to that, General Peter Pace held the position prior to becoming the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

    Just some information.

  18. Fred Stewart says:

    The Department of the Marines is what it should have been all long.

  19. Ryan says:

    The Marine Corps has a long tradition as being a part of the DON. The name change is unnecessary. As Marines, we are all proud to be part of the naval tradition. It seems like this resolution is trying to justify the Marine Corps and make it seem larger than it is. We are the smallest force and part of the DON, but that is what sets us apart from the rest of the services. Along with that, the name change will cost us more money during a time when we are already working under a tight budget.

  20. Byran says:

    The problem with the name change passing does not fall to the House of Representatives on May 4, 2010: This bill passed in the House of Representatives by voice vote. There were 426 sponsor/co-sponsors (only 9 members sat out) on the bill. The Problem resides in the Senate where for the past 9 yrs versions of this bill have been killed in committee. Now, S504 Sponsored by Sen. Pat Roberts, is in the senate and there are 80 sponsors/co-sponsors. It has been referred to committee yet again and we shall see if it survives. Two of the most interesting hold out members of the committee are Senator Jim Webb(was also 66th Secretary of the Navy) and Senator John McCain, neither of these senators have signed as cosponsors and Sen McCain has been on the committee all these years. Contact these two senators and let them know your feelings. If not killed in committee then by my math this bill would pass. I am proud to say that my Senators Hatch and Bennett and Congressman Chaffetz have co-sponsored.

  21. Scott says:


    I think this name change is more about the families of those who have made the ultimate sacrifice. Put yourself in the position of a grieving mother who reads a condolence letter from the Navy, signed by the SecNav rather than the CMC. Do we not owe it to the families to represent the fallen for who they are United States Marines?

  22. Ronald says:

    Imagine all the leader heads that will have to be changed. Couple sheets of paper will add up to a lot of money spent on nothing.

  23. Stephen Real says:

    Hey Sgt. Shea, I think the issue comes across as “small potatos” in my opinion. What I really want to know from you (US Marines), who now have a larger standing force then all of Germany’s Bundeswehr (land-Army) is just how many US Marines do we really need?
    I figure we need at least six standing MEUs and all that comes with a MEU force. I think the MEU force is becoming one of the most flexible forces in the US’s quiver, a real must have in the world of politics.
    I listen and read Secretary Gates and he’s looking to down size the US Marines in the coming years, but politically speaking, these MEU forces have become a politician’s right hand for so many different causes and reasons. If I was in charge? I’d find it hard to live without them.
    Hey Sgt. Shea I understand this isn’t the forum for these types of question but I don’t know where else to go with this.
    I really have learned to love the US Army for all it can bring to the table, but the US Marines and US Navy have more of an active future in my line of thinking, politically speaking, after these wars scale down.
    How many MEU’s do we really need? And what’s the future read on a landing tractor for the force?

    I would bring offerings to the Oracle of Delphi, but I’m relying on you Sgt Shea to bring me the answers.

    Good Luck fellas.

  24. GyJB says:


    It is my firm opinion that House Resolution 24 should be passed into law and that the slight adjustement to the Department of the Navy’s title be made to include that of the Marine Corps.

    Marines and Sailors alike have lived, breathed, bled and died for this country and each of them deserve the basic recognition due to any Service member; Army, Air Force, Navy or Marine Corps.

    Let’s not dilly dally any longer and continue to drag out what eventually be approved anyway.

  25. Adam says:

    We are part of a long naval tradition. Why the Napolean Complex? As Marines, have we ever been unable to accomplish the mission because we were part of the DoN vice the DoNMC?

    Is this part of an effort to get a Marine General Officer into a allowed slot (and voting seat) at the Joint Chief’s table (when we aren’t filling the JCS role itself)?

    Whichever way Congress decides to go, it will not change the fact that I will always be a Marine who has been raised as part of a proud Naval Tradition. And if the name changes, does the school in Annapolis become the Naval & Marine Corps Academy?

  26. Raijin2004 says:

    As much as I agree, I feel that it personally doesn’t matter what the DON is called. Hell scrap the department all together and call us the friggin wonder twins for all I care. At the end of the day, I am a Marine.