FORT HUACHCUA, Ariz. Running, inspirational speeches and slices of cake helped Soldiers, civilians and Family members celebrated the Army's 237th birthday on Friday at 6 a.m. during the Army Birthday Celebration on Warrior-Sentinel Fields. Approximately 500 guests participated in the post-wide event. Although the Army actually turned 237 on June 14, the main celebratory event was held on Friday.

The festivities kicked off with a four-mile, esprit-de-corps run for individuals and units. Leading the run were Maj. Gen. Gregg Potter, commanding general, U.S. Army Intelligence Center and Fort Huachuca and Command Sgt. Maj. Todd Holiday, command sergeant major, USAICoE. Once the run was complete, Potter led the participating units in a series of cool-down stretches including pushups, mountain climbers and jumping jacks.

Next, Potter expressed his pride in the Army. "For the last 10 ten years, the Army -- your Army -- has been doing some heavy lifting for our nation in Iraq and Afghanistan. I couldn't be prouder of these young men and women who joined our armed forces and gave up their freedom so that others may be free. Today that's the most important thing -- that's what I wake up proud of every morning," said Potter.

In Army tradition, a birthday cake was presented to the crowd after Potter's remarks. The cake was created by Spc. Joshua Winfield, Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 11th Signal Brigade. It was a six-foot long, two-and-a-half-foot wide vanilla cake with a butter-cream filling. The cake was cut not only by Potter and Holiday, but also by the oldest Soldier at Fort Huachuca, Lt. Col Thomas McFarland, deputy post chaplain; and the youngest Soldier, Pvt. Ivy Carter, Company F, 309th MI Battalion. Throughout the celebration, the main point was clear -- the Army values its past and present Soldiers and their 237 years of sacrifices.

"[The Soldiers] are the bill payers for freedom, and they carry the burden of the nation. They do what 90 percent of Americans will not do, which is to execute our nation's bidding. They are really the true heroes. It is rightful that we celebrate these 237 years [with them]," said Col. Kenneth Revell, installation chaplain.