Unofficially, today just happens to be US Navy Day. Officially, the Navy’s birthday is October 13. In our Catholic house, that creates a conflict since October 13 is also the Miracle of the Spinning Sun. Choosing is not up for debate. I love my country, but I love God more. Thank goodness, we have an Unofficial Navy Day.
Between 1922 and 1972, the Navy celebrated its birthday on October 27th in honor of President Theodore Roosevelt’s birth. He elevated the U.S. Navy to a premier fighting force. During his term as Assistant Secretary of the Navy, he built up the power and strength of the U.S. Navy. Roosevelt’s pursuit of the naval aircraft advanced the U.S. Navy. As president, Roosevelt was the first president to submerge in a submarine and also the first to fly. His support of the Navy led the former Secretary of the Navy, John F. Lehman, to say, Theodore Roosevelt, “was one of the architects of our modern Navy.” October 27th was celebrated with much pomp and circumstance. Each year the U.S. Navy dispatched ships to various U.S. ports where public celebrations were held. The 1945 celebration was particularly grand and memorable when sitting President Harry S. Truman arrived to review the fleet in New York Harbor.
Navy Day was last officially observed in 1949 when the first Secretary of Defense, Louis A. Johnson, announced that Armed Forces Day would officially replace Navy Day commencing the following year. Johnson designated the third Saturday in May as Armed Forces Day, a joint celebration recognizing all six traditional branches of the U.S. military: Air Force, Army, Coast Guard, Marine Corps, Navy, and now the newly created Space Force. Officially, the Navy now acknowledges its birthday on October 13, without all the fanfare of past celebration. However; the Navy League continues to organize events celebrating the original Navy Day on October 27. As a civilian organization, they were not affected by the change. And that’s good enough for me!
Here’s to those who serve in the US Navy, and all those who support them in their call to duty!
Navy Bean Soup
1-1/2 cups dried Navy Beans
3 Carrots, peeled and diced
2 Celery Ribs, chopped
1 small White onion, chopped
2 cups Cubed Ham, fully cooked
2 cups Water
1 envelope Vegetable Recipe Mix (Knorr)
1 envelope Onion Soup Mix
4 cups Chicken Stock
Black Pepper to taste
1 Bay Leaf
Place beans in a pot, cover with cold water and soak overnight. Drain well, set aside.
Peel and dice, carrots, place in the bowl of a 5-quart slow cooker. Clean, trim and chop celery, add to slow cooker. Peel and dice onion, add to vegetable mix. Stir in ham and beans, set aside.
Measure water in a 4-cup measuring cup. Stir in vegetable and onion soup mixes. Pour into the slow cooker. Add chicken stock, season with pepper. Stir well. Place bay leaf on top of soup mixture.
Cover and cook on HIGH for 6 hours or LOW for 9 hours, until beans are tender. Discard bay leaf, ladle into bowl and serve.
A heart filled thank you to all who answer the call to serve our nation. We are forever in your debt.