Army Chaplaincy Has Musical Birthday Party
August 3, 2011
REDSTONE ARSENAL, Ala.--Live band music provided the backdrop for lunch Friday at the Sparkman Cafeteria. And there was an historic reason for it.
The AMC Jazz Band performed on the Army Chaplaincy’s 236th anniversary.
“We’re the second oldest branch in the Army. The oldest branch is the Infantry,” AMCOM Chaplain (Lt. Col.) Leon Kircher said. “We were founded 29 July 1775 (by Gen. George Washington).”
The chaplain corps is even older than the United States, which was founded July 4, 1776.
In the cafeteria, four historic panels about the chaplain corps were tied to the seven Army values.
“The Army chaplaincy was the first integrated portion of the military,” Kircher, a chaplain corps historian, said. “We were the first integrated school in the Army.”
Participants in a brief cake-cutting ceremony included Gen. Ann Dunwoody, commander of the Army Materiel Command; Maj. Gen. Jim Rogers, commander of AMCOM; and AMC Chaplain (Col.) Robert Coffey.
“Happy anniversary to our chaplain corps. Amen, and God bless all of you,” Dunwoody said.
More than 1,000 chaplains have deployed since the start of these wars and 400 have died in service to this country over the years, Rogers said.