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Today in My History

2000: ** No entry **
2001:  Farewell, Sweet Polly
2002:  Only God Can Make a Tree
2003:  War--Good for Me?
2004:  Old Friends
2005:
To Be, or Not to Be?
2006:  The Last Day
2007: This Day in My Life 
2008:  The Big News
2009:  Frazzled
2010:  Where's the Band?
2011:  May the Force be With You
2012: Luck of the Draw

2013: 5,000 Questions, Part 2
2014: 
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2015: Adrenalin Keeps You Going
2016:
Me and Meredity
2017:
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2018: A Day with Grandma
2019: No Perks of Aging

2020: Sunday Stealing

 


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Murder on the Orpheum Circuit
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TOMB OF THE UNKNOWN

22 March 2021

I read this recently and thought it fascinating, so I'm sharing:

On Jeopardy! the other night, the final question was: "How many steps does the guard take during his walk across the Tomb of the Unknown?"

All three missed it.

Tomb of the Unknown Soldier

1. How many steps does the guard take during his walk across the Tomb of the Unknown and why?

21 steps. It alludes to the twenty-one gun salute, which is the highest honor given any military or foreign dignitary.

2. How long does he wait after his about face to begin his return walk and why?

21 seconds for the same reason as above.

3. Why are his gloves wet?

His gloves are moistened to prevent his losing his grip on the rifle.

4. Does he carry his rifle on the same shoulder all the time and if not, why not?

He carries the rifle on the shoulder away from the tomb. After his march across the path, he executes an about face and moves the rifle to the outside shoulder.

5. How often are the guards changed?

Guards are changed every thirty minutes, twenty-four hours a day, 365 days a year.

6. What are the physical traits of the guard limited to?

For a person to apply for guard duty at the tomb, he must be between 5' 10" and 6' 2" tall and his waist size cannot exceed 30." Other requirements of the Guard:

  • They must commit 2 years of life to guard the tomb, live in a barracks under the tomb, and cannot drink any alcohol on or off duty for the rest of their lives.

  • They cannot swear in public for the rest of their lives and cannot disgrace the uniform {fighting} or the tomb in any way. After two years, the guard is given a wreath pin that is worn on their lapel signifying they served as guard of the tomb. There are only 400 presently worn.

  • The guard must obey these rules for the rest of their lives or give up the wreath pin.

The shoes are specially made with very thick soles to keep the heat and cold from their feet. There are metal heel plates that extend to the top of the shoe in order to make the loud click as they come to a halt.

There are no wrinkles, folds or lint on the uniform.

Guards dress for duty in front of a full-length mirror.

The first six months of duty a guard cannot talk to anyone, nor watch TV.  All off duty time is spent studying the 175 notable people laid to rest in Arlington National Cemetery. A guard must memorize who they are and where they are interred.

Among the notables are: President Taft, Joe E. Lewis {the boxer} and Medal of Honor recipient Audie Murphy, {the most decorated soldier of WWII} of Hollywood fame.

Every guard spends five hours a day getting his uniforms ready for guard duty.

In 2003 as Hurricane Isabelle was approaching Washington , DC , our US Senate/House took 2 days off with anticipation of the storm. On the ABC evening news, it was reported that because of the dangers from the hurricane, the military members assigned the duty of guarding the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier were given permission to suspend the assignment.

They respectfully declined the offer, 'No way, Sir!' Soaked to the skin, marching in the pelting rain of a tropical storm, they said that guarding the Tomb was not just an assignment, it was the highest honor that can be afforded to a service person.

The tomb has been patrolled continuously, 24/7, since 1930.

God Bless and Keep Them

I don't usually suggest that many posts be forwarded, but I'd be very proud if this one reached as many people as possible.

We can be very proud of our young men and women in the service no matter where they serve.

Duty - Honor - Country
 

PHOTO OF THE DAY


 

 

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