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.
October 18, 2021 - Honoring the Battlefields of France – and the Centennial of America's Unknown Soldier
October 19, 2021
Here is an article written by Denise Doring VanBuren, President General of the Daughters of the American Revolution Honoring the Battlefields of France and the Centennial of Americas Unknown Soldier...
October 11, 2021 - TUS100 Update
October 11, 2021
New update with information on events in France and the US, along with the US Senate Resolution. Don't forget to check out the list of...
At the Society of the Honor Guard, Tomb of the Unknown Soldier (SHGTUS) general membership meeting in October 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 works 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.
Our members are working 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.
SGM (Ret) Gavin McIlvenna (1997-98), SHGTUS President
Centennial Committee Chairman
For more information regarding the Centennial and how you can help, click HERE.
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?
Are the shoes specially made with very thick soles to keep the heat and cold from their feet?
The shoes are standard issue military dress shoes. They are built up so the sole and heel are equal in height. This allows the Sentinel to stand with a straight back and perpendicular to the ground. A side effect of this is that the Sentinel can "roll" on the outside of the build up walking down the mat. Done correctly, the hat and bayonet will appear to not "bob" up and down with each step. It gives a more formal, fluid and smooth look to the walk, rather than a "marching" appearance.
The soles have a steel tip on the toe and a "horseshoe" steel plate on the heel. This prevents wear on the sole and allows the Sentinel to move smoothly during his movements when he turns to face the Tomb and then back down the mat.
Then there is the "clicker". It is a shank of steel attached to the inside of the face of the heel build-up on each shoe. It allows the Sentinel to heel click during certain movements. A guard change is considered great when all the heel clicks fall together and sound as one click. The guard change is occasionally done in the "silent" mode (as a sign of devotion to the Unknowns) with no voice commands - every thing is done in relation to the heel clicks and on specific counts.