• Mon. Oct 3rd, 2022

DVIDS – News – Sailors Complete Ceremonial Guards Training

ByJanice K. Merrill

Jul 8, 2022

JOINT BASE ANACOSTIA-BOLLING – US Navy Ceremonial Guard (USNCG) welcomed 15 sailors who completed initial training to become ceremonial guards aboard Joint Base Anacostia-Bolling on July 8, 2022.

Sailors who graduated today have completed eight to nine weeks of self-paced training which focuses on rifle marching and drill, ceremonial dress standards, assembly and inspection of the M-1 rifle, and forces sailors to learn the history and purpose of the Ceremonial Guard.

Additionally, during the training, the sailors passed the Navy Physical Readiness Test at a level higher than that required by the rest of the fleet on two occasions.

The qualified sailors are:

Aviator Chase Alford
Airman Aiden Amente
Airman Nathan Averill-Lang
Airman David Conley
Dallas Wolters Aviator
Firefighter Nelson Pascal-Kelly
Seaman Thomas Agnetti
Agreement with deckhand Apryl
Seaman Valeria Echeverry
Seaman Trent Farmer
Seaman Atokofi Forson
Seaman Noah Fortner
Seaman Profith Ihenetu
Seaman Ashanti Ladson
Seaman Tariq Matthews

“I have a very good impression of this group of trainees who have now entered the guard,” said Seaman Perry Romero, squad leader. “It was an honor and a privilege to be their squad leader, to see them progress and hone their skills.”

These sailors endured the physical and mental fatigue of standing to attention for hours during the day. They could only move around the training center by walking and performing proper face movements. They also received an M-1 rifle from previous guards to disassemble and remove lacquer polish and reassemble and polish. Their uniform inspections are so detailed that some standards are measured down to individual thread counts.

“It’s so gratifying to know that I’m supporting such a large, dynamic operation and dedicating myself to something so much bigger than myself,” Conley said. “It’s an honor to be a Guardsman and to be considered the face of the Navy.”

Guardsmen are selected from Recruit Training Command during their basic training, based on an interview process and physical requirements, to represent the Naval Service in ceremonial presidential, military, of the Navy and public in and around Washington DC The Ceremonial Guard serves as a funeral escort during all services for Navy personnel interred at Arlington National Cemetery.

“These 15 sailors are going to do great things as guardsmen,” said Cmdr. USNCG Commander Dave Tickle. “I am extremely proud and excited to see how they continue to grow as sailors.”

Upon graduation, these sailors will be assigned to the Marching Platoon, the initial platoon that holds all guards after graduation. During their time in the marching pack, they will work
towards the qualifications required to become a member of one of four units: Pallbearer Platoon, Execution Squad Platoon, Color Platoon, or Drill Team Platoon.

Members of the Casket Bearer Platoon participate in several variations of Last Rites ceremonies at Arlington National Cemetery. During a two-year tour of command, each pallbearer strives to become proficient in all coffin-bearing assignments and achieve the coveted wreathbearer qualification. Along the way, sailors must achieve weight training goals as well as performance qualifications. In teams of eight, pallbearers carry the remains of fallen service members to their final resting places within Arlington National Cemetery.

Riflemen from the Gunnery Group Platoon perform the three-volley salute at each Navy burial at Arlington National Cemetery. Each member of the firing squad strives to achieve their highest qualification as a Battery Petty Officer. This qualification signifies that a sailor has demonstrated the commander’s knowledge, leadership, and confidence to lead the gun crew in firing the salute battery guns at the Washington Navy Yard.

A standard color guard is made up of four members: a left rifleman, national color, navy color and a right rifleman. Members of the Colors Platoon must learn the drill, movements and history behind the Navy Colors and the 30 battle streamers that accompany the flag, which represent every war and conflict in the service’s history . This prepares color guard personnel for their highest qualification as personal color bearers. Those who achieve this qualification are authorized to carry the flag in the personal colors of admirals, senior military and government officials, including the President of the United States.

Members of the US Navy Drill Team platoon are experts in the art of close drill, coordination and timing. Using the standard Springfield rifle of 1903 with a fixed 10″ bayonet, the drill team follows a naval service tradition of performing a four-man routine and a nine-man routine. The complex drill block executed by the team drill team includes marching and weapon presentations, executed with unique precision movement and stunning aerial maneuvers. The drill team performs electrifying performances for audiences in the Washington D.C. area and tours the country throughout Every member of the drilling crew works extraordinarily long hours striving to achieve their highest qualification as a Peak Man.

Since 1931, the Navy Ceremonial Guard has grown from an assembly of men awaiting transfer from the Naval Gun Factory to a highly refined shore command of over 200 sailors. The Ceremonial Guard remains focused on providing funeral honors to former and present Navy service members and ceremonial support throughout the Washington DC area.

Learn more about visiting the US Navy Ceremonial Guard
https://www.cnic.navy.mil/regions/ndw/about/ceremonial_guard.html or follow us on social media
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