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    Honor guard teams compete to be the best

    Honor guard teams compete to be the best

    Photo By Johnathon Orrell | Army National Guardsmen taking part in the 2010 Army National Guard honor guard...... read more read more



    Story by Tech. Sgt. Johnathon Orrell 

    National Guard Bureau

    FORT SNELLING, Minn. - Because honor guard members perform over 120,000 funeral details every year, they must make a significant commitment of time and always remember the importance of their duty.

    “We serve those who served us, and it’s an incredible honor to pay tribute to [them],” said Army Capt. Dan Rebmann the manager of the Army National Guard’s military funeral honors program.

    This week, the Army Guard will hold its 2010 honor guard competition here to test the proficiency of eight teams from New York, West Virginia, Tennessee, Michigan, Arkansas, Washington, Nevada and last year’s champion Minnesota in meeting the Army Guard’s standard operating procedure for funeral honors.

    “This competition allows teams to gain some realistic training to reinforce what they are taught at the honor guard course at the Professional Education Center at Camp Robinson, Ark., and ensure that standards are being followed,” Rebmann said. “This is an important event for honor guards to become involved in.”

    He added that the competition also allows the teams to pass along what they learn and increase everyone’s competency.

    The journey to become a competing team begins by sending an audition DVD of a full honors ceremony to PEC, Rebmann said. Instructors at the schoolhouse evaluate the performance and score the top eight teams, which are selected to attend the competition.

    Once selected to compete, teams are put through three days of competition to test them on their knowledge and skill in all aspects of honor guard details.

    “They will be graded on everything … from a three-solider modified honor ceremony up to and including full honors ceremony with pall bearers, firing squad and TAPS,” Rebmann said. “That requires training and preparation to ensure that those honors are done professionally.”

    The six evaluators are acquired from around the Army’s honor guard program, including three soldiers from the Army's 3rd U.S. Infantry [The Old Guard] from Fort Myer, Va., which participates in thousands of funerals every year and guards the Tomb of the Unknowns at Arlington National Cemetery.

    Rebmann said he hopes the experience will make each competitor a better honor guard member.

    “You have to have the desire to go above and beyond,” he said.



    Date Taken: 09.20.2010
    Date Posted: 09.21.2010 12:58
    Story ID: 56719
    Location: FORT SNELLING, MN, US 

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