Eighty future Sailors from Missouri, Illinois, Kansas and Kentucky took the oath of enlistment to join the Navy during a pre-game ceremony at Busch Stadium June 7. 

The new recruits make up the 60th Cardinal Division. 

Commander, Navy Recruiting Command, Rear Adm. Pete Garvin, administered the oath of enlistment to the recruits in front of their family, friends and baseball fans.

“It is an honor to be with you here this morning as we celebrate these young men who are about to depart on what I call an awesome adventure,” said Garvin.

He stated the recruits were joining a long legacy of Sailors who have lived lives forged by the sea.

“They have made the decision to join the ranks of those who are serving in the most admirable of all professions, the defense of our great country and its way of life,” Garvin added.

Before the ceremony at Busch Stadium, the future Sailors attended a pre-game event and picnic at City Hall and Poelker Park. The newly sworn in recruits along with Sailors from Navy Recruiting District (NRD) St. Louis then marched in formation through the city’s streets downtown to the ballpark. 

After watching the St. Louis Cardinals take on the Miami Marlins, the recruits boarded a bus and headed to Recruit Training Command in Great Lakes, Illinois, to start their basic military training.

Cardinal Division is the longest-running sponsored recruit division in all of the military services. The Cardinals and Navy Recruiting District St. Louis have worked together with the St. Louis Navy League to form and sponsor the division since 1958. 

Prior to departing St. Louis, Garvin also visited with Sailors at some of the local recruiting stations including Navy Recruiting Station (NRS) Carbondale, NRS Fairview Heights and NRS West County. 

Chief Navy Counselor John MacPherson, division leading chief petty officer, Division 7, said Garvin’s visit to St. Louis was very motivating. 

“He brought a lot of great information on the way forward for the future of Navy recruiting,” said MacPherson. 

NRD St. Louis' area of responsibility covers more than 200,000 square miles, which encompasses all of Missouri, parts of Illinois and Kansas, as well as a portion of Kentucky. More than 100 officers, enlisted, and civilian staff comprise 29 recruiting stations, two Navy Officer Recruiting Stations and the headquarters. Additionally, two Military Entrance Processing Stations - one at the headquarters in St. Louis and one in Kansas City, Mo., - handle applicants' processing, classification, and physical examinations.


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Updated March 1, 2017 (kbh)