Society of the Honor Guard
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.
“In Valor There is Hope”
May 16, 2022
On May 11, 2022 SFC (Ret) Chelsea Porterfield (2020-21) was the key note speaker during the Federal Protective Service annual wreath ceremony during National Police Week in Washington DC. As a former...
Tomb Guard Identification Badge Ceremony
May 16, 2022
On 19 May 2022 at 1030, there will be an award ceremony to present the Tomb Guard Identification Badge (TGIB) to the following new Sentinels: Sergeant Jacob Sprosty (TGIB #697) Sergeant Kamille...
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?
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).