This past November 10th at a luncheon celebrating the 241st birthday of the United States Marine Corps, Elk Grove Detachment 1238 unveiled their Challenge Coin and presented it to a small number of members that so generously donated time, money and ideas to make the coin a reality.
The Challenge Coin has a long standing tradition of symbolizing unit identity and esprit de corps. Bearing their revered symbols and motto’s the coin can be traced as far back as the Civil War when men would take with them, into battle, a special coin from home and keep forever as a remembrance of their wartime experiences.
These coins identify the bearer as a member of a particular unit with a well-defined history and mission. The Challenge Coin shares its popularity with all branches of the military as well with local fire and police departments. It expresses a unique identity and builds camaraderie and symbolizes pride of membership in an elite group.
Wherever warriors gather they challenge one-another by “coining.” Slamming one’s coin on the bar challenges others to display their coin. The last one to do so, or the one that has no coin must pay a penalty. Usually buying a round for the group.
A Challenge Coin is not merely a token. It is a tangible source of pride for America’s warriors at every level of command.
Jr. Vice Commandant
Elk Grove Detachment 1238