PACIFIC OCEAN — Hospital Corpsmen aboard amphibious assault ship USS Peleliu (LHA 5) celebrated the rating’s 114th birthday and commemorated those who have served as corpsmen in the past and present.
During the ceremony, all medical staff aboard reaffirmed the corpsman pledge and observed the history of the rating.
The birth of the hospital corpsman stretches back 114 years ago when the rating was first established to support Marines and Sailors by tending to the sick and wounded. It is the largest rating in the Navy.
“Today is important to the Navy and corpsmen all over the fleet because it celebrates the vast history of our job,” said Chief Hospital Corpsman Fernanda Velazquez. Hospital corpsman is the largest rate in the Navy. “We are double the size of the second largest rating. Those numbers themselves show the value and importance corpsmen are to the Navy and I’m proud to be one of them.”
Peleliu corpsmen represent the Navy and Marine Corps team in its fullest, said Senior Chief Hospital Corpsman Glenn Loflin, medical department’s leading chief petty officer. “Where there’s Marines, there’s Navy and where there’s Navy, there’s Marines. We work as one and succeed as one. It is the nature of our job and the nature of the Navy and Marine Corps team aboard Peleliu.”
While rich in history and heritage, hospital corpsmen continue to set the standard to keep both Sailors and Marines fit for full duty on Peleliu and all around the fleet, past or present.
“Corpsmen have been at every battle throughout history where Marines fought. It is important for us to remember that and to reflect on why we are part of the U.S. Navy. We have played a vital role in history and success of the Navy and Marine Corps team and continue to do so today,” Velazquez said.
The ceremony concluded with the traditional Navy cake cutting by the oldest and youngest Sailors, Loflin joined by Hospital Corpsman 3rd Class Corey Naylor, respectfully.