By Charles Melton (USAG Fort Irwin)June 17, 2009
Fort Irwin and the National Training Center put on quite a show as the installation joined the rest of the Army in celebrating the Army's 234th birthday on June 10 with one noticeable difference. This year the post didn't sing "Happy Birthday," but instead had children from its Child, Youth and School Services program perform two of their own songs to commemorate the occasion. "It was kind of scary, but it was also kind of fun to sing in front of everybody," said Trevione Stone, son of Fort Irwin/NTC G3 Sgt. Major Jay Porter. Stone and his friends also joined Fort Irwin/NTC Commanding General Brig. Gen. Robert "Abe" Abrams and Fort Irwin/NTC Command Sgt. Maj. Robert A. Moore in cutting the Army birthday cake with the ceremonial saber. The Non-Commissioned Officers Corps is the backbone of the Army and has been since its inception, especially during 2009, which is the Year of the NCO, Brig. Gen. Abrams said. "If NCOs are the backbone of our Army, then our Families are the soul," he said, thanking Families for the sacrifices and contributions they make to the Army each and every day. Brig. Gen. Abrams also expressed his appreciation for the work done by Department of the Army civilians and contractors, who work hand-in-hand with Soldiers and Families to accomplish the mission of the National Training Center. "Our NCOs are the backbone of our Army and our Families are the soul," he said. "Our civilians are the continuity that keeps us together." When the Army was formed on June 14, 1775, there was no celebration to mark the Army's birthday, because those times were too sobering to celebrate, he said. "Two-hundred and thirty-four years later we are celebrating, and we will do what our forefathers could not have done to celebrate our birthday," he said, adding that the celebration would not be possible without Soldiers. The Army's birthday is a much about celebrating honoring its Soldiers as it is about highlighting the date of the Army's inception, Brig. Gen. Abrams said. Throughout the rest of the day, units and organizations across Fort Irwin and NTC hosted various events to celebrate the Army's birthday including decorating rooms in all of the CYSS facilities in red, white and blue and singing songs in front of the post PX. "It's a great day to be a Soldier and it's a great day to celebrate our Army's birthday," Brig. Gen. Abrams said.