On Patrol

Until every one comes home | The Magazine of the USO

The United States Army knows how to throw a birthday party. Because really, what's the most important part of any birthday party?

That's right, cake.

When the Army throws a birthday party, you know that you're going to get cake. It's usually going to be a really big cake and maybe, if you're lucky, they'll be cutting that cake with a really big saber.

So today, in honor of the Army's 238th birthday, we give you Army birthday cakes from around the world ...

Left to Right: Colonel Arthur Wittich, General Ray Odierno, Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel, Secretary of the Army John McHugh, Sergeant Major of the Army Raymond Chandler and Private First Class Andrew Selga cut the U.S. Army birthday cake during a Pentagon ceremony Thursday marking the Army birthday at the Pentagon. DOD photo by Erin A. Kirk-CuomoLeft to Right: Colonel Arthur Wittich, General Ray Odierno, Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel, Secretary of the Army John McHugh, Sergeant Major of the Army Raymond Chandler and Private First Class Andrew Selga cut the U.S. Army birthday cake during a Pentagon ceremony Thursday marking the Army birthday at the Pentagon. DOD photo by Erin A. Kirk-Cuomo

Command Sergeant Major Thomas R. Capel, ISAF senior enlisted leader, receives a slice of Army birthday cake in Kabul, Afghanistan. Army photo by Staff Sergeant Bruce CobbeldickCommand Sergeant Major Thomas R. Capel, ISAF senior enlisted leader, receives a slice of Army birthday cake in Kabul, Afghanistan. Army photo by Staff Sergeant Bruce Cobbeldick

U.S. and Polish soldiers celebrate the Army's 238th birthday Friday on Forward Operating Base Ghazni, Afghanistan. Army photo by Sergeant 1st Class 1st Class Kenneth FossU.S. and Polish soldiers celebrate the Army's 238th birthday Friday on Forward Operating Base Ghazni, Afghanistan. Army photo by Sergeant 1st Class 1st Class Kenneth Foss

Oldest and youngest members of the U.S. Army cut cake in celebration of the 238th Army birthday at the McNamara Headquarters Complex, Fort Belvoir, Virginia. Courtesy photoOldest and youngest members of the U.S. Army cut cake in celebration of the 238th Army birthday at the McNamara Headquarters Complex, Fort Belvoir, Virginia. Courtesy photo

Cutting the Army birthday cake on Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, New Jersey. Army photoCutting the Army birthday cake on Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, New Jersey. Army photo

A saber is used to cut the Army birthday cake Thursday during the 21 Theater Sustainment Command's Army birthday ceremony at Panzer Kaserne in Germany. Army photoA saber is used to cut the Army birthday cake Thursday during the 21 Theater Sustainment Command's Army birthday ceremony at Panzer Kaserne in Germany. Army photo

Soldiers representing the youngest and oldest from both the U.S. Army Forces Command and U.S. Army Reserve Command headquarters, cut the ceremonial cakes during the Army's 238th birthday at their Fort Bragg, North Carolina, headquarters. Army photoSoldiers representing the youngest and oldest from both the U.S. Army Forces Command and U.S. Army Reserve Command headquarters, cut the ceremonial cakes during the Army's 238th birthday at their Fort Bragg, North Carolina, headquarters. Army photo

The 18th Airborne Corps, USO North Carolina and Fort Bragg co-hosted the 2nd annual Army Birthday Cake Challenge on Wednesday at the Fayetteville Veteran Affairs Medical Center. Army photo by Sergeant Diandra J. HarrellThe 18th Airborne Corps, USO North Carolina and Fort Bragg co-hosted the 2nd annual Army Birthday Cake Challenge on Wednesday at the Fayetteville Veteran Affairs Medical Center. Army photo by Sergeant Diandra J. Harrell

Preparing to make the first cut into a birthday cake Friday, celebrating the U.S. Army's 238th birthday at Bagram Airfield, Afghanistan. Army photo by Sergeant 1st Class Aaron EastmanPreparing to make the first cut into a birthday cake Friday, celebrating the U.S. Army's 238th birthday at Bagram Airfield, Afghanistan. Army photo by Sergeant 1st Class Aaron Eastman

Major General Leslie Carroll, chief of staff, United States Army Forces Command, Major General Luis, Visot, deputy commanding general, United States Army Reserve Command (USARC), Spc. Nathaniel Butler, youngest FORSCOM soldier, Chief Warrant Officer Bernard Satterfield, oldest FORSCOM soldier, Sgt. Jessy Westfall, youngest USARC soldier, and Master Sgt. Stephen Opet, oldest USARC soldier cut the FORSCOM Army Birthday cake during the celebration of the Army's 238th Birthday. Army photo by Sergeant Amie J. McMillanMajor General Leslie Carroll, chief of staff, United States Army Forces Command, Major General Luis, Visot, deputy commanding general, United States Army Reserve Command (USARC), Spc. Nathaniel Butler, youngest FORSCOM soldier, Chief Warrant Officer Bernard Satterfield, oldest FORSCOM soldier, Sgt. Jessy Westfall, youngest USARC soldier, and Master Sgt. Stephen Opet, oldest USARC soldier cut the FORSCOM Army Birthday cake during the celebration of the Army's 238th Birthday. Army photo by Sergeant Amie J. McMillan

Celebrating the Army’s birthday with the 82nd Airborne Division. Army photo by Staff Sergeant. Christopher HarperCelebrating the Army’s birthday with the 82nd Airborne Division. Army photo by Staff Sergeant. Christopher Harper

The Army birthday celebration at Founders Field on Fort Carson, Colorado. Army photo by Sergeant William SmithThe Army birthday celebration at Founders Field on Fort Carson, Colorado. Army photo by Sergeant William Smith

Forty Feet Down

June 14, 2013, 8:00AM

Candidates of South Carolina Army National Guard's Palmetto Military Academy test their confidence earlier this month at Fort Jackson's 70-foot Victory Tower. PMA candidates conquer the tower's 40-foot cargo net and 40-foot rappelling wall to test their strength and self-confidence during Phase I of the 12-month quest to become an officer. Army photo by Sergeant Brian CalhounCandidates of South Carolina Army National Guard's Palmetto Military Academy test their confidence earlier this month at Fort Jackson's 70-foot Victory Tower. PMA candidates conquer the tower's 40-foot cargo net and 40-foot rappelling wall to test their strength and self-confidence during Phase I of the 12-month quest to become an officer. Army photo by Sergeant Brian Calhoun

Taking Care of the Cow

June 13, 2013, 8:00AM

Captain Matt Radde with the 994th Medical Detachment (Veterinarian Services) treats a dairy cow at the Salvadoran Cavalry Base during Beyond the Horizon El Salvador earlier this month. Army photo by Staff Sergeant Brendan StephensCaptain Matt Radde with the 994th Medical Detachment (Veterinarian Services) treats a dairy cow at the Salvadoran Cavalry Base during Beyond the Horizon El Salvador earlier this month. Army photo by Staff Sergeant Brendan Stephens

Ready for Operation Nightmare

June 12, 2013, 7:56AM

Marines conduct radio checks on Camp Bastion, Afghanistan, last week before carrying out Operation Nightmare, a clearing operation led by Afghan National Security Forces and supported by the Marines. Marine Corps photo by Kowshon YeMarines conduct radio checks on Camp Bastion, Afghanistan, last week before carrying out Operation Nightmare, a clearing operation led by Afghan National Security Forces and supported by the Marines. Marine Corps photo by Kowshon Ye

Taking Aim

June 11, 2013, 7:39AM

Navy Petty Officer 1st Class Baltazar Perez the M-240B fires a machine gun as he participates in marksmanship training earlier this month on Camp Leatherneck, Afghanistan Navy photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Daniel GarasNavy Petty Officer 1st Class Baltazar Perez the M-240B fires a machine gun as he participates in marksmanship training earlier this month on Camp Leatherneck, Afghanistan Navy photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Daniel Garas

Army Specialist Kurt Anderson patrols during a recent Afghan-led search for weapons and explosives outside a village in Zabul province, Afghanistan. Army photo by Specialist Tim MorganArmy Specialist Kurt Anderson patrols during a recent Afghan-led search for weapons and explosives outside a village in Zabul province, Afghanistan. Army photo by Specialist Tim Morgan