Gunny G: That Famous Presidential Marines Quote?
“Some people spend an entire lifetime wondering
if they’ve made a difference. The Marines don’t
have that problem.”
President Ronald Reagan seems to be universally
credited with the above quote, and the quote
itself is generally shown with Reagan’s name
But, was he the originator of that saying?
No, he was not!
He did speak those words in 1985 (or whenever)
alright, but he was not the first one to do so.
I, personally, know that the above “quote” was
known to Marines long prior to 1983/1985. In fact,
when I heard Reagan use it, I recall that I
jokingly remarked to the effect that he would
likely then be credited with it. But I never
really thought that all reference to the original
speaker of those words would be lost.
Today, a search of the Internet would seem to
indicate Reagan as the original speaker/writer of
those words, and it must appear that way on a
thousand Marines’ websites that I’ve seen! Now
that the saying has found its way into print
together with Reagan’s name, the world believes
what it sees is fact, and If the true reference
is still out there somewhere, it is in indeed
I am surprised that I can now find so few
old-time Marines who remember it before Reagan.
Most likely it was first written or voiced by a
Marine–but possibly someone else– in a
statement, a book or some other writing.
No, I do not think that President Reagan intended
to misrepresent this quote–I do think too many
people erroneously just assume/believe he is the
original author of it.
Not a big thing you say? You’re right, but……….