Century of Service

From Wind Repertory Project
Ryan Nowlin

Ryan Nowlin

General Info

Year: 2018
Duration: c. 3:25
Difficulty: III (see Ratings for explanation)
Publisher: U.S. Marine Band
Cost: Score and Parts – Free

For availability information, see Discussion tab, above.


Full Score
C Piccolo
Flute I-II
Oboe I-II
Bassoon I-II
E-flat Soprano Clarinet
B-flat Soprano Clarinet I-II-III
B-flat Bass Clarinet
E-flat Alto Saxophone I-II
B-flat Tenor Saxophone
E-flat Baritone Saxophone
B-flat Trumpet I-II-III
Horn in F I-II-III-IV
Trombone I-II-III
Percussion I-II (4 Players), including:

  • Bass Drum
  • Bells
  • Crash Cymbals
  • Snare Drum


None discovered thus far.

Program Notes

Opha May Johnson may not be a household name, but hers is a name etched in the hearts of all current and former women who have served in the Marine Corps, Navy, and Coast Guard since 1918. This past August marked the 100th anniversary of the day she stepped forward and became the first woman to enlist in the United States Marine Corps, which opened doors and broke barriers to women throughout the sea services.

On Aug. 13, 1918, in Washington, D.C., 40-year-old Opha May Johnson was the first of about 300 women who initially enlisted in the Marine Corps Reserve (USMCR) for service during World War I. They served in clerical and administrative positions and marched in parades. “After the Armistice the women were released from active duty by mid-1919 and transferred to the inactive reserve for the duration of their enlistment. One platoon of women Marines was called back to active duty for one day on Nov. 11, 1921, to escort the Body of the Unknown Soldier to his final resting place in Arlington National Cemetery,” said Nancy Wilt, the national historian of the Women Marines Association and Director/Curator of the Women of the Corps Collection. “I have tremendous respect for the women of WWI who by the thousands lined up across the country to become members of the Marine Corps and serve a country that had not given them the right to vote,” Wilt continued. “It is amazing the service of the Salvation Army, the American Red Cross, the military women of WWI, and the thousands of other woman volunteers who harvested crops, rolled bandages, and knitted cold weather sweaters and mittens for units.”

Wilt wrote a letter to Marine Band Director Col. Jason K. Fettig to ask the Marine Band to honor the centennial with a march since the nearly 24,000 women Marines of World War II marched to ]]Louis Saverino]] and Emil Grasser’s March of the Women Marinesd and the 1970s women Marines danced to Saverino’s “Women Marine Waltz.” Fettig agreed and selected Assistant Director Capt. Ryan Nowlin to musically mark the occasion. “I spent an hour and a half on the phone with her to get my musical ideas, all of which are inspired by the story of these first women Marines answering the nation’s call in 1918,” Nowlin said. “I wrote these melodies constantly rising in pitch to symbolize that always reaching, always growing, that determined spirit of these women who volunteered in 1918. It is truly an honor to write the march in recognition of the century of service of women in the United States Marine Corps.”

- Program Note by U.S. Marine Band


State Ratings

None discovered thus far.


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Works for Winds by This Composer


None discovered thus far.