Happy 237th Birthday, Army: 10 Army Facts That Will Blow Your Mind
I encourage everyone to take a few minutes out of their school and/or work schedules today to recognize current and former members of the U.S. Army.
Today is the Army's 237th birthday. If you know military members in the Army, be sure to wish these individuals a happy birthday and thank them for their service.
It was on this day 237 years ago that our country's leaders established the Continental Army to protect our nation and our citizens. At Grantham University, we can't express enough gratitude to the brave men and women who put their lives on the line so we can rest at night free of worry. As a token of our appreciation, we'd like to present a short video that honors current and former members of the Army. Enjoy:
As another tribute, I'd like to continue today's blog with 10 Army facts that will blow your mind (yes, these are all true):
1. Jimi Hendrix served in the Army.
Considered by many, including Rolling Stone, to be the greatest electric guitarist of all-time (personally, I'd take Eric Clapton, but that's for another conversation), Hendrix enlisted in the Army in 1961. He was stationed at Fort Campbell, Kentucky, and served only one year.
2. 30 of the 44 U.S. Presidents served in the Army.
Current President Barack Obama did not. However, two earned the rank of five-star General (George Washington, Dwight Eisenhower), while one earned a Medal of Honor (Theodore Roosevelt).
3. An Army officer was responsible for discovering the Grand Canyon in Arizona.
Army Lieutenant Joseph Ives first surveyed the Canyon on an expedition in 1861 and deemed it useless. Oops.
Another Army officer, Major John Wesley Powell, made famous for the Powell Geographic Expedition in 1869, founded the Grand Canyon on a three-month trek down the Green and Colorado Rivers.
4. Pike's Peak in Colorado is named after an Army officer.
Zebulon Pike was a U.S. Army captain from 1806-1807, a colonel in 1812 and was promoted to brigadier general in 1813. Pike's Expedition (1806-1807) was a military effort authorized by the U.S. Government to explore land to the south and west of the Louisiana Purchase.
5. More than a dozen Army astronauts have orbited the Earth on space shuttle missions.
The first active duty Army soldier to enter space was Lt. Col. Robert L. Stewart on Feb. 11, 1984.
6. Mr. T served in the Army.
Yes, the man famous for the phrase "I pity the fool" served in the Army. Laurence Tureaud (his real name) was actually promoted to squad leader in 1975 after being awarded a letter of recommendation by his drill sergeant. That year, Mr. T was elected Top Trainee of a cycle that contained 6,000 troops.
7. The Army's combined component strength as of fiscal year 2010 was more than one million soldiers.
The breakdown: Regular Army 561,979 soldiers; Army National Guard 362,015; U.S. Army Reserve 205,281. Total: 1,129,275. This next stat may not blow your mind, but just in case anyone was wondering: The Army is the largest branch of the U.S. military.
8. Other notable celebrities who served in the Army include: Ice-T...
Tracy Marrow joined the Army in 1979 and served for four years before becoming a rapper and actor.
9. ... Dave Thomas ...
The founder of fast food giant Wendy's joined the Army in 1950 and, fittingly, was responsible for serving meals to 2,000 soldiers per day. Thomas eventually rose to the level of Staff Sergeant.
10. ... and Frank Gorshin.
The Riddler in the Batman television series served in the Army from 1953-1955 as an entertainer attached to Special Services.
From all of us at Grantham University, Happy 237th Birthday, Army! And thank you.
Grantham University has provided educational opportunities to service members and their families since 1951. For career- and school-related blogs catered specifically to military service members, please click the image below:
About the author: Eric Sorrentino joined Grantham University as Social Media Manager in October 2011. Prior to that, he blogged about Big 12 Conference athletics for KUsports.com and was a sports copy editor for the Lawrence Journal-World. Eric received his bachelor's degree in Journalism from the University of Kansas.