October 13th marks the birthday of the United States Navy. The Navy traces its roots back to the early days of the American Revolution. On October 13, 1775, the Continental Congress authorized 2 armed vessels to search for ships supplying the British army with weapons and ammunition during the American Revolutionary War. When the war ended, the Continental Navy was dismantled, but pirate threats to American merchant shipping led President George Washington to establish the Naval Act of 1794, creating a permanent standing US Navy.
President Theodore Roosevelt said it best “A good Navy is not a provocation to war. It is the surest guaranty of peace.” Our US Navy guarantees the protection of our people both at home and abroad.
I come from a Navy family, my grandfather, father and a host of relatives have all served in the Navy. My grandfather, Sydney Daniel joined the Navy in 1936. He was a Pearl Harbor survivor and served on the battleship the USS Maryland. My grandfather fought in the battles of Midway, Leyte Gulf and the battle to retake the Philippines. He went on to serve for 20 years in the Navy and retired in 1956. My father, Joel Daniel joined in 1971, he served in Vietnam and was stationed in the Gulf of Tonkin. He was honorably discharged and joined the reserves years later. He went on to serve for 27 years and retired in 2011 having been deployed to Iraq and Kuwait in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. My sister Julie and I both joined the Navy post 9-11.
At one time, my dad, sister and I were all forward deployed. Needless to say, my mother was not all that thrilled at the time. My sister had the job of running the operations department for combating the pirate threat in the Gulf of Aden in 2009. So much like the early days of the Continental Navy, some things never change.
As a member of a Navy family, it’s an honor to celebrate the birthday of a branch with a rich history of service and protection. Happy 242nd Birthday to the United States Navy!
Jordon Daniel is the Colorado Coaltions Director for Concerend Veterans for America