From the President
3 years ago
While I was back in Washington DC for Neale’s memorial service, I had the opportunity to be present for the last walk of SSG Dallas Kempo (2015-17). While there I spoke with COL Jason Garkey, the Regimental Commander (RCO), and he mentioned that he is working within the regiment to ensure that its unique histories and traditions are passed on to the newest member. Growing up in the Airborne Corps of the Army, I found that the unit’s traditions I was assigned to have endured since 1940, and are passed down with vigor to the youngest paratrooper. Keeping traditions alive helps younger Soldiers understand the grander meaning of the regiment that they serve in. My personal regiment is the 325th Airborne Infantry Regiment and I still remember learning about the battles, deeds, and traditions including learning how to describe our unit crest down to every detail. How many of you can say the same about The Old Guard regiment? No matter how long you were a Tomb Guard, at one point you were assigned to a company within the Regiment before volunteering for the TUS. Whether you served in another unit in the Army or not, this is your regiment. While my home regiment does not have an association like The Old Guard Association (TOGA) or the Society, I will forever follow and honor its traditions.
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Did you know?
Has anyone ever tried to get past the Tomb guards, or attempted to deface the Tomb?
Yes, that is the reason why we now guard the Tomb. Back in the early 1920's, we didn't have guards and the Tomb looked much different. It was flat at ground level without the 70 ton marble 'cap'. People often came to the cemetery in those days and a few actually used the Tomb as a picnic area, likely because of the view. Soon after in 1925, they posted a civilian guard. In 1926, a US Army soldier was posted during cemetery hours. On July 1, 1937 guard duty was expanded to the 24 hour watch. Since then, the ceremony has evolved throughout the years to what you see today. Today, most of the challenges faced by the Sentinels are tourists who are speaking too loudly or attempting to get a better picture (by entering the post).