TUPELO, Miss. (WTVA) -- Local United States Marine Corps veterans say what has been written and said about the organization being the "few and the proud" is more than just media hype.
In short, they say, they are who they say they are.
Active and former soldiers shared just what it meant to serve their country as a Marine on this, the Corps' 237th birthday.
"It means that I can look at myself in the mirror in the morning and know that I'm a member of a brotherhood of the finest people I've ever met in my life," Ret. Sgt. Bob Verrell said. "It's wonderful. We say that if someone has to ask what it's like, you can't explain it to them."
"It's just great to be among these Marines," said Patrick Tudor, a veteran from Pontotoc. "There's a world of history right here just amongst us tonight, all the way back from World War II. I'm sure there will be a couple here who served in World War II."
As these veterans stop to remember the 237th birthday of the Marine Corps in America, they say its a good time to remember the service they have rendered to their country.
And by using the phrase "Semper Fi," they say it embodies what they stand for and what they mean to the people of America.
"The first Marine Corps birthday, the first formal Marine Corps birthday was in 1925. Every year since that time, no matter where Marines are around the world, if there's more than two they will get together and celebrate our birthday and the founding of our Corps," said Rex Moody, a veteran and Marine Corps League representative.
"Semper Fidelis means 'always faithful,'" Marine Corps recruiter Patrick Eversull said. "[You're] always faithful to your communities and the country itself, and always faithful to one another."
When asked how the USMC is in the midst of defense cuts, Eversull said the organization's still going strong.
"I think it's in great shape. Granted you've got the downsize of the military going on, but with the downsize there also comes higher quality," Eversull said. "So with higher quality, we build our Marine Corps and we strengthen it for the future."
This was the first year the Tupelo Marine Corps League hosted the celebration.
The Marine Corps was founded in 1775 in Philadelphia, Penn.