75 Motivational United States Marine Corps Quotes

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75 Motivational United States Marine Corps Quotes

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75 Famous quotes and sayings about the united states marines

Established in 1775, the U.S. Marines are a fighting force steeped in history, pride and steadfast loyalty – to both their Country and their fellow Marines.

This is encapsulated in their motto ‘Semper Fidelis’, (Latin for “Always Faithful”).

We have put together (17)75 of the most inspiring, funny and powerful quotes in existence, for the United States Marine Corps.

United States Marine Corps Quotes

1. “There are only two kinds of people that understand Marines: Marines and the enemy. Everyone else has a second-hand opinion.”

Gen. William Thornson, U.S. Army

2. “Freedom is not free, but the U.S. Marine Corps will pay most of your       share.”

Ned Dolan

3. “They’re on our right, they’re on our left, they’re in front of us, they’re behind us; they can’t get away from us this time.” 

Col. Lewis B. “Chesty” Puller, USMC

4. “The Marine Corps is supposed to be the toughest and most rigorous of its class.”

Adam Driver

5. “There’s a mindset of flexibility and adaptability that comes with us. We don’t mind hardship. We don’t mind somebody saying, ‘Go in and do this nasty job.’ Whatever the job is, we can do it. That’s why the nation has a Marine Corps.”

James F. Amos

6. “One of the first things I learned in the Marine Corps is that any military mission has to be defined as precisely as you can possibly define it, and then you size the force and equipment force to accomplish that mission without fail.”

John Glenn

7. “The Marine Corps has just been called by the New York Times, ‘The elite of this Country’. I think it is the elite of the world.”

William Halsey

8. “Every Marine is, first and foremost, a rifleman. All other conditions are secondary.”

Gen. A. M. Gray, USMC
Commandant of the Marine Corps

9. “Tell that to the Marines.”

Franklin D. Roosevelt

10. “The United States Marine Corps, with its fiercely proud tradition of excellence in combat, its hallowed rituals, and its unbending code of honor, is part of the fabric of American myth.”

Thomas E. Ricks

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Marine corps quotes
United States Marine Corps Quotes

11. “The safest place in Korea was right behind a platoon of Marines. Lord, how they could fight!”

MGen. Frank E. Lowe, USA; Korea, 1952

12. “We are intensely proud of their noble record and are glad to have had the whole world see how irresistible they are in their might when a cause which America holds dear is at stake. The whole nation has reason to be proud of them.”

Woodrow Wilson

13. “And all of these together, as much as any campaign the Marine Corps has ever pursued, have brought an unrelenting, never-ceasing pride to all of us who have ever claimed the title of United States Marine.”

Jim Webb

14. “A Marine is a Marine.  I set that policy two weeks ago – there’s no such thing as a former Marine. You’re a Marine, just in a different uniform and you’re in a different phase of your life. But you’ll always be a Marine because you went to Parris Island, San Diego or the hills of Quantico. There’s no such thing as a former Marine.”

General James F. Amos, 35th Commandant USMC

15. “I come in peace; I didn’t bring artillery.  But I am pleading with you with tears in my eyes: If you fuck with me, I’ll kill you all.”

Marine General James Mattis, to Iraqi tribal leaders

United States Marines Quotes
Tactical Semper Fidelis Patches

16.Marines I see as two breeds, Rottweilers or Dobermans, because Marines come in two varieties, big and mean, or skinny and mean. They’re aggressive on the attack and tenacious on defence. They’ve got really short hair and they always go for the throat.”

RAdm. R. Stark, USN

17. “We’re a family, the Marine Corps. We take care of each other, and that includes supporting the spouses and families of Marines who are left behind during a deployment. We all take care of one another.

Brad Milton

18. “Hell, these are Marines. Men like them held Guadalcanal and took Iwo Jima. Baghdad ain’t shit.”

Marine Major General John F. Kelly 

19. “In the Marine Corps, everything had a purpose.”

Adam Driver

20. “Bravery is the capacity to perform properly even when scared half to death.”

Omar N. Bradley

Marine corps quotes
United States Marine Corps Quotes

21. “I still need Marines who can shoot and salute. But I need Marines who can fix jet engines and man sophisticated radar sets, as well.”

Robert E. Cushman Jr

 22. “We signed up knowing the risk. Those innocent people in New York didn’t go to work thinking there was any kind of risk.”

Pvt. Mike Armendariz-Clark, USMC; Afghanistan, 20 September 2001
As reported in the New York Times

23. “The Marine Corps is proud of the fact that it is a force of combined arms, and it jealously guards the integrity of its air-ground team. 

Keith B. McCutcheon

24.Marines know how to use their bayonets. Army bayonets may as well be paper-weights.”

Navy Times; November 1994

25. “We’re really talking about the Army and Marine Corps here for almost all these ground combat jobs. They want to move in a careful, deliberate manner.

Renee Montagne

26. “Why in hell can’t the Army do it if the Marines can. They are the same kind of men; why can’t they be like Marines.”

Gen. John J. “Black Jack” Pershing, USA; February 1918

 27. The United States Marine Corps, with its fiercely proud tradition of excellence in combat, its hallowed rituals, and its unbending code of honor, is part of the fabric of American myth.”

Thomas E. Ricks

28. “The raising of that flag on Suribachi means a Marine Corps for the next five hundred years.”

James Forrestal, Secretary of the Navy; 23 February 1945
(The flag-raising on Iwo is immortalized in a photograph by photographer Joe Rosenthal – image below) 

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Marine corps quotes
United States Marine Corps Quotes

29. “Marines die, that’s what we’re here for. But the Marine Corps lives forever. And that means YOU live forever.”

Phil Hartman

 30. “I have just returned from visiting the Marines at the front, and there is not a finer fighting organization in the world!”

Douglas MacArthur, General of the Armies; Korea, September 1950

31. “A Marine should be sworn to the patient endurance of hardships, like the ancient knights; and it is not the least of these necessary hardships to have to serve with sailors.”

Bernard Montgomery

32.We have two companies of Marines running rampant all over the northern half of this island, and three Army regiments pinned down in the southwestern corner, doing nothing. What the hell is going on?”

Gen. John W. Vessey Jr., USA, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff
during the assault on Grenada, 1983

33. “A Marine likes a good fight and respects a good fighter. You’ve got yourself one fine Marine for an escort and the whole Marine Corps behind you.”

Bud Rudesill

34. “The future success of the Marine Corps depends on two factors: first, an efficient performance of all duties to which its officers and men may be assigned; second, promptly bringing this efficiency to the attention of the proper officials of the government, and the American people.”

Jon A. Lejeune

united states marine corps quotes
"Pain Is Weakness Leaving the Body"

35. “When you’re working with Army and Marine Corps units, you immediately notice a difference. The army is pretty tough, but their performance can depend on the individual unit. Some are excellent, filled with Hoorah and 1st class Warriors. A few are absolutely horrible; most are somewhere in between. In my experience Marines are gung ho no matter what. They will all fight to the death. Every one of them just wants to get out there and kill. They are bad-ass, hard charging mothers.”

Chris Kyle

 36.“The Marines I have seen around the world have the cleanest bodies, the filthiest minds, the highest morale, and the lowest morals of any group of animals I have ever seen. Thank God for the United States Marine Corps!”

Eleanor Roosevelt, First Lady of the United States, 1945

37. “The Marines have landed, and the situation is well in hand.”

Richard Harding Davis

38. “We have two companies of MARINES running all over this island and thousands of ARMY troops doing nothing!”

John W. Vessey Jr

39. “If I had one more division like this First Marine Division, I could win this war.”

General of the Armies Douglas McArthur. Korea

Marine corps quotes
United States Marine Corps Quotes

40. “There’s a mindset of flexibility and adaptability that comes with us. We don’t mind hardship. We don’t mind somebody saying – “Go in and do this nasty job.” Whatever the job is, we can do it. That’s why the nation has a Marine Corps.”

James F. Amos

41. “I have learned two important lessons from my association with the Marine Corps: always be on time and always be ready to do what is required when you get there.”

Ed Mcmanhon

42. “Some people spend an entire lifetime wondering if they made a difference in the world. But the Marines don’t have that problem.”

Ronald Reagan, President of the United States; 1985 

43. “So they’ve got us surrounded, good! Now we can fire in any direction, those bastards won’t get away this time!”

Col. Lewis B. “Chesty” Puller, USMC 

 44. “They told (us) to open up the Embassy, or “we’ll blow you away.” And then they looked up and saw the Marines on the roof with these really big guns, and they said in Somali, “Igaralli ahow,” which means “Excuse me, I didn’t mean it, my mistake”.

Karen Aquilar, in the U.S. Embassy; Mogadishu, Somalia, 1991

45. “I have only two men out of my company and 20 out of some other company. We need support, but it is almost suicide to try to get it here as we are swept by machine gun fire and a constant barrage is on us. I have no one on my left and only a few on my right. I will hold.”

1stLt. Clifton B. Cates, USMC
Belleau Wood, July 1918

 46. “Come on, you sons of bitches! Do you want to live forever?”

GySgt. Daniel J. “Dan” Daly, USMC
As he led the 5th Marines’ attack into Belleau Wood, 6 June 1918

 47. “Don’t you forget that you’re First Marines! Not all the communists in Hell can overrun you!”

Col. Lewis B. “Chesty” Puller, USMC 

48.“Demonstrate to the world there is “No better friend, no worse enemy” than a U.S. Marine.”

James Mattis

 49. You’ll never get a Purple Heart hiding in a foxhole! Follow me!”

Capt. Henry P. Crowe, USMC; Guadalcanal, 13 January 1943

Marine corps quotes
United States Marine Corps Quotes

50. “We are United States Marines, and for two and a quarter centuries we have defined the standards of courage, esprit, and military prowess.”

Gen. James L. Jones, USMC (CMC)

51. “The great use of life is to spend it for something that will outlast it.”

William James

52. “There are only two kinds of people that understand Marines: Marines and the enemy. Everyone else has a second-hand opinion.”

Gen. William Thornson, U.S. Army

53. “Casualties many; percentage of dead not known; combat efficiency; we are winning.”

David M. Shoup

54.I love the Corps for those intangible possessions that cannot be issued: pride, honor, integrity, and being able to carry on the traditions for generations of warriors past.”

Cpl. Jeff Sornig, USMC

55. “We’re surrounded. That simplifies the problem!”

Col. Lewis B. “Chesty” Puller, USMC 

56. “For over 221 years our Corps has done two things for this great Nation. We make Marines, and we win battles.”

Gen. Charles C. Krulak, USMC (CMC)

57. “Courage is endurance for one moment more…”

Unknown Marine Second Lieutenant in Vietnam

 58. This was the first time that the Marines of the two nations had fought side by side since the defence of the Peking Legations in 1900. Let it be said that the admiration of all ranks of 41 Commando for their brothers in arms was and is unbounded. They fought like tigers and their morale and esprit de corps is second to none.”

Lt Col. D.B. Drysdale, Commanding
41 Commando, Chosen Reservoir, on the 1st Marine Division

Marine corps quotes
United States Marine Corps Quotes

59. The wonderful love of a beautiful maid,

The love of a staunch true man,
The love of a baby, unafraid,
Have existed since time began.”

60. “But the greatest of loves, the quintessence of loves.
even greater than that of a mother,
Is the tender, passionate, infinite love,
of one drunken Marine for another.”

“Semper Fidelis”

General Louis H. Wilson
Commandant of the Marine Corps
Toast given at 203rd Marine Corps Birthday Ball, 1978

61. “You cannot exaggerate about the Marines. They are convinced to the point of arrogance, that they are the most ferocious fighters on earth- and the amusing thing about it is that they are.”

Father Kevin Keaney

62. “Ensure that no Marine who honarably wore the Eagle, Globe and Anchor is lost to the Marine Corps family.”

James L. Jones

63. “The bended knee is not a tradition of our Corps.”

General Alexander A. Vandergrift, USMC
to the Senate Naval Affairs Committee

64. “Old breed? New breed? There’s not a damn bit of difference so long as it’s the Marine breed.”

Col. Lewis B. “Chesty” Puller, USMC 

65. “Being ready is not what matters. What matters is winning after you get there.”

LtGen Victor H. Krulak, USMC

66. “I can’t say enough about the two Marine divisions. If I use words like ‘brilliant,’ it would really be an under description of the absolutely superb job that they did in breaching the so-called ‘impenetrable barrier.’ It was a classic- absolutely classic- military breaching of a very very tough minefield, barbed wire, fire trenches-type barrier.”

Gen. Norman Schwarzkopf, U. S. Army
Commander, Operation Desert Storm, February 1991

67. “My only answer as to why the Marines get the toughest jobs is because the average Leatherneck is a much better fighter. He has far more guts, courage, and better officers… These boys out here have a pride in the Marine Corps and will fight to the end no matter what the cost.”

2nd Lt. Richard C. Kennard, Peleliu, World War II 

68.The deadliest weapon in the world is a Marine and his rifle.”

Gen. John “Black Jack” Pershing, U.S. Army
(Commander of American Forces in World War I)

69.The American Marines have it [pride], and benefit from it. They are tough, cocky, sure of themselves and their buddies. They can fight and they know it.”

General Mark Clark, U.S. Army

70. “They (Women Marines) don’t have a nickname, and they don’t need one. They get their basic training in a Marine atmosphere, at a Marine Post. They inherit the traditions of the Marines. They are Marines.”

LtGen Thomas Holcomb, USMC
Commandant of the Marine Corps, 1943

71. “I’ve always been proud of being a Marine. I won’t hesitate to defend the Corps.”

Jonathan Winters

72. “A Ship without Marines is like a garment without buttons.”

Adm. David Dixon Porter, USN in a letter to
Colonel Commandant John Harris, USMC, 1863

73. “So the Marine Corps really did teach me to conquer fear, and then to go for higher causes, higher purposes.”

Robert Kiyosaki 

74. “The Marine Corps taught me how to kill, but it didn’t teach me how to deal with killing.”

Karl Marlantes

75. “Men do not fight for flag or country, for the Marine Corps or glory or any other abstraction. They fight for one another. And if you came through this ordeal, you would age with dignity.

William Manchester

We hope you’ve enjoyed reading these United States Marine Corps quotes!

For more captivating quotes, why not check out our blog post 159 Inspirational Quotes and Sayings about Resilience and Overcoming Adversity (2021)’.


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