San Diego

Marine Corps Recruit Depot Celebrates 100 Year Anniversary

MCRD San Diego is celebrating a historic milestone as an established landmark downtown on Dec. 1

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The Marine Corps Recruit Depot of San Diego is celebrating 100 years as an established landmark in America's Finest City.

In honor of the centennial anniversary, the depot is hosting a virtual concert performance from the Marine Band San Diego on Wednesday at 3 p.m.

The concert will feature songs that the band deems to have impacted musical generations over the last 100 years.

The Marine Band has played for nearly a century and performs over 350 shows each year. These performances include military ceremonies, parades, and school showcases across the nation.

You can watch their performance on the MCRD San Diego YouTube here.

The 100-year celebration carries even more weight following the passage of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2020. The act states that the U.S. Marine Corps is reviewing its recruit training locations in San Diego and Parris Island, South Carolina for possible relocation.

California Senators Dianne Feinstein and Alex Padilla joined Rep. Scott Peters in introducing legislation to prohibit the closure of MCRD San Diego back in September.

"The base has been a strategically vital location for the Marines since before World War II and should continue to serve as such. San Diego is home to a robust military community with a rich history of service. There is no reason to relocate this important training center," Feinstein said when introducing the legislation.

The San Diego MCRD has served as the recruit training center for the western United States since 1923, training nearly 18,000 Marines every year.

The Marines first made their appearance in San Diego while supporting the Panama-California Exposition at Balboa Park from 1915 through 1917. Afterwards, the Marines proposed establishing a permanent base in San Diego. On March 19, 1919 the construction of the depot began.

When it opened in 1921, recruit training was not the depot's original purpose. It was initially concerned with supporting Marine Corps expeditionary operations.

As the Marine Corps began to expand during World War II and other training areas were established in the area, the primary purpose of the depot shifted to recruit training. In 1948, the installation was officially designated as the Marine Corps Recruit Depot San Diego.

Seven military installations are located in San Diego County, including three Marine Corps bases that are home to nearly one-third of all active-duty Marines.

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