The Society of the Honor Guard
The Society is a non-profit association organized expressly for and wholly committed to preserving the unique history of the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier (Tomb), honoring and remembering the service and sacrifice of the Unknown servicemen buried on the east plaza of the Memorial Amphitheater as well as the empty crypt dedicated to our nations missing, and protecting and enhancing the welfare and image of the Honor Guard, Tomb of the Unknown Soldier (alternative reference as, Tomb Guards) past and present.
The mission of the Society is to:
- Honor the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier
- Educate the citizenry of the United States of America of the service and sacrifice of the Unknown Soldiers, and the duty performed by the active Tomb Guards, while perpetuating the memory of former Tomb Guards
- Recognize past and present Tomb Guards who demonstrate exemplary service at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier
- Protect, uphold, preserve and keep safe from exploitation, the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier Identification Badge (TGIB)
- Maintain and conduct an organization that will further develop the camaraderie and common bond existing among those who served with, and shoulder to shoulder besides, the Tomb Guards, and their families
- Preserve and maintain records and publish the history of the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier
- Authenticate and recognize the achievements of the Tomb Guards
- Support the soldiers actively serving in the Honor Guard, Tomb of the Unknown Soldier
The goal of the Society is to make certain that the individuals that made the ultimate sacrifice of their life for our freedom are not forgotten, and that the general public understands this price of freedom.
The membership of the Society is made up of former and current Tomb Guards, and individuals and organizations who have an affinity for the Society mission.
The Society welcomes the opportunity to share our mission through our community outreach programs and events. And we encourage the participation of anyone interested in volunteering or donating in support of our mission.
U.S. Navy Veteran, Thomas Spivey, Passes Away
November 30, 2022
With a heavy heart, we inform you of the passing of a U.S. Navy Veteran, Thomas Spivey, on August 19, 2022. Petty Officer Third Class Tom Spivey was an 18-year-old fireman with a place in history as...
World War I History Podcast Released
November 6, 2022
Please take a moment and check out this podcast from the MacArthur Memorial where they talked with former 1st Relief Commander and Society President Gavin McIlvenna (1997-98) about the World War I...
In 2014 the Board of Directors approved the formation of the Centennial Committee. The committee was directed to act as the point of contact for Society matters related to the 100th Anniversary of the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier (TUS) and to develop resources, and coordinate and implement new Society educational campaigns, programs, and media releases associated with the 100th Anniversary of the TUS.
The Centennial Committee worked closely with another non-profit organization, The Tomb of the Unknown Soldier Foundation, in the national planning of the 100th Anniversary of the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier (TUS) in Arlington National Cemetery in both the US and overseas.
Our members continue to work tirelessly in every community in America to bring attention to each of the Unknown Soldiers, the anniversary of the burial of the World War I Unknown Soldier, why the Tomb as a national monument is important, and the Sentinels who have stood the watch since 1926 and continue to do so 24hrs a day, 7 days a week since 1937.
Support the Society
The Society of the Honor Guard, Tomb of the Unknown Soldier (SHGTUS) is able to provide our programs, events, assistance, scholarships, and services due to the generosity of its members, organizations, and individuals. SHGTUS does not receive institutional funding. Note: The Society of the Honor Guard, Tomb of the Unknown Soldier is a 501(c)(3) organization, so your contributions may be fully tax deductible.
Did you know?
How many times will a Sentinel be on duty during the shift?
Each Relief has a 24 hour rotational work day. Ideally, four qualified Sentinels, one Relief Commander (RC), one Assistant Relief Commander (ARC), and several Sentinels in training comprise the Relief. The daily walk schedule is made by the RC or ARC and is dependent on the number of Sentinels who are proficient enough to guard the Tomb in front of the public. Generally, the Sentinel will do several walks back to back and then be done for the day. However, in extreme cases, Sentinels have been known to go back-to-back (every other walk) for the entire shift.