February 15, 2013, 3:07 PM
Marines Roll Out Red Carpet for Chesty the Recruit
By Julian E. Barnes
U.S. Marine Corps Photo
Chesty, future Marine Corps mascot, sits on the red carpet in front of the Home of the Commandants waiting to meet Bonnie Amos, wife of Gen. James F. Amos, commandant of the Marine Corps during a visit to Marine Barracks Washington, D.C., Feb. 14, 2013. Chesty, a 9-week-old pedigree English bulldog is soon to become the future Marine Corps mascot after the completion of an obedience and recruit training with a ceremony scheduled for March 29. After completing training, the young puppy will earn the title Marine. (Marine Corps Photo by Sgt. Dengrier M. Baez)
The first step for this bulldog pup will be Marine boot camp.
The Marine Corps on Friday unveiled their future mascot. If all goes as planned, Chesty the Recruit will become Private First Class Chesty XIV later this year, replacing Sgt Chesty XIII.
Chesty XIII became one of the most storied dogs in the long history of Marine Corps mascots when he faced off last year with Bravo, the Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta’s golden retriever.
As chronicled in The Wall Street Journal, the growling confrontation earned Chesty a promotion to Sergeant and raised the bulldog’s reputation among many of the enlisted and officers at the Marine Corps barracks. But it didn’t sit too well with some of the officer’s wives.
Some of the women viewed Chesty the XIII as crotchety and ill-mannered to guests. (Check out the video here.)
The Marines rolled out the red carpet for 9-week old Chesty the Recruit Thursday night at the Home of the Commandants at the Washington, D.C., Marine Barracks. Bonnie Amos, the wife of Marine Corps Commandant James Amos, met the latest Chesty Thursday night.
“My gosh this is the cutest puppy … I think this one will be fine as wine,” Mrs. Amos said in an interview Friday. “He has a great little personality.”
The Marine Corps first announced the arrival of Chesty the Recruit on Facebook and put out a release and a slideshow of the puppy. After a period of between six and eight weeks of “boot camp,” Chesty the Recruit may have a chance to appear alongside Sgt. Chesty during the Summer time Friday Evening Parades at the Marine Barracks in Washington.
At the end of the parade season, the Marines plan to officially hand over the mascot duties to the new Chesty. (All Marine mascots are named after Lt. Gen. Chesty Puller, the most decorated officer in Marine Corps history.)
Mrs. Amos demurred when asked about Chesty XIII, but made clear there will not be a repeat of the incident with Bravo, if she has anything to do with it. Mrs. Amos laid out an aggressive plan for helping train the new puppy.
“I will start bringing him into the house and let him socialize with groups of people,” Mrs. Amos said. “I am getting my fix on this puppy. Whether the barracks likes it or not I have a personal interest in this puppy… We will teach this one to be very courteous.