Marshall and His Birthday

46.12.31 Marshall Birthday Celebration [1203]Classmates in grade school who celebrated birthdays close to the holidays deserved our sympathy. The strong pull of gravity around Christmas and Hanukkah diminished their special days that traveled in minor orbits around these behemoths.

Born on December 31, 1880, George C. Marshall may have felt the same way that some of my friends felt, yet we may never know. I suspect the stoic adult Marshall was equally braced as a youngster. Determined to play the hand he was dealt, he probably did not feel sorry for himself. In fact it is his steely resolve to push on that is one of the many aspects of his character that make him exemplary even today as a role model for others to emulate.

Despite having a birthday in the midst of major holidays, not all of Marshall’s birthdays were uneventful. In 1946 Marshall celebrated his birthday as a dinner guest at the home of Generalissimo and Madame Chiang Kai-shek in Chungking, China, where he had been leading a mediation mission for more than a year. Also, the tremendous outpouring of birthday greetings that Marshall received on his 75th birthday certainly would have helped make up for the many years of neglected birthdays he may have endured as a child.

Screen Shot 2014-12-15 at 8.57.10 AMHis unimpeachable character represents an important element of our quest: To share the best of Marshall with those who follow in order to insure that the valuable and still-timely lessons of General Marshall’s life are not lost and that this nation and the wider world continue to be inspired by the standards he set.

To help us do this, we invite you to become a member and thereby support our larger aim while deriving the benefits of membership in the only organization devoted to revealing through its own scholarship, museum exhibitions, special events and programs the greatness of this great man. We are the keeper of the flame, and you can help us right now to keep it burning brightly. Our best wishes for a happy holiday and a wonderful new year.

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