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Newest Marine is only 6 months old

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Smedley Butler

SAN DIEGO — Smedley Butler officially became a Marine Thursday morning in a ceremony at Camp Pendleton, although he’s just 6 months old.

Smedley is an English bulldog that recently became the mascot at the Marine Corps Recruit Depot in San Diego. The new private first class replaced Cpl. Belleau Wood, a canine that retired in April to live with a family in Temecula, according to the MCRD.

Smedley — named after a major general who was the most decorated Marine when he died — received the eagle, globe and anchor emblem in a ceremony that symbolizes the culmination of recruit training. The ceremony marks the first time recruits are called Marines.

The dog’s duties as mascot include participating in events like family day, motivational runs and graduation ceremonies, in addition to various community relations and recruiting events throughout the western recruiting region.

Smedley, whose namesake was the second commander of the MCRD, continues a tradition of mascots at the facility. The first depot mascot was James Jolly Plum Duff, an English bulldog introduced by Butler in 1939.

Belleau Wood was named after a battle in France during World War I in June 1918.


  • Erika Mitchell

    They might not want to take that bulldog on motivational runs…… They tend to overheat due to their short snout and face. My neighbor took his on a run on a warmer day in San Diego, CA and he died of heat stroke . Dumb choice if dog if they wanted a jogging partner!

  • JohnS

    ^^^^ They dont take the dog on the full moto run.. Just for ceremony purposes. USMC Has been using bulldogs as mascot for YEARS now.. If you look at Marine emblems aside from the EGA, they have a bulldog with devil horns. It represents DEVILDOGS. A nickname Marines got in WW1 when fighting the Germans. Because the Marines fought so fiercely, they were referred to as teufelhunden (Devil Dogs)

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