Drill Team Technique

Last-Minute Performance Advice

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I am consistently asked about last-minute advice whether it be for a competition the next day the next week or even the next month. Most of the time the request for advice comes a bit too late to fix any major issues. What what a team can work on at the last minute is uniforms and haircuts, etc, but teams …

Tuck Your Gloves! But, In Your Epaulet?

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Some may find this innocuous, but (first responder) ceremonial guardsmen need to maintain a professional image when in uniform before, during and after a ceremony. Any other time that we are out of uniform, dress is most likely not an issue. For us in the military, it’s a big no-no to tuck gloves into an epaulet. That’s not where they belong …

Exhibition Color Guard? Consensus Says it’s OK!

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I cannot even bring myself to insert a picture of a color guard performing exhibition moves. Instead, here is an awesome firefighter color guard, the members of which were trained by yours truly. Reference: Training Circular 3-21.5; Marine Corps Order P5060.20; AF Manual 36-2203; The Honor Guard Manual I have heard from several cadets that their color guard has performed …

American First Responder Joint Service Order

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Is this a “thing”? Possibly, my reasoning for the research and writing this article is to provide information that may be necessary for certain situations for American First Responders. For the US military, we have our joint service order or military order of precedence:  Army, Marine Corps, Navy, Air Force, and Coast Guard. The order is based on the creation of …

Firefighter Uniform for the Funeral Procession

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I constantly receive questions on here my website and on my social media accounts. I also belong to a couple of Facebook first responder groups where drill and ceremonies and honor guard questions are posted from time-to-time. For some questions, I just read the responses and learn; for others, I am able to share my knowledge. This one was a …

The Honor Guard and the Suicide

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It’s been years since I was part of an Airman’s Active Duty (full honors) funeral who committed suicide (early 1990s). During the preparation for that funeral I remember some of my fellow guardsmen voicing their opinion as to whether the Airmen deserved full honors or even a flag on his casket. Suicide is looked upon as shameful; less so now, …

The Three Types of Respect

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And you probably thought there was only one type. I did initially. Thank you very much to my Facebook friends who chimed in giving me their requested feedback for this article. Very interesting! I need to make one point very clear, it does not matter what one “thinks” about this subject. “I think respect is…” What you think, what I …

The Burial at Sea

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Burial at Sea is a long standing maritime tradition and, just like a committal service on land, there are certain procedures to follow. Picture courtesy of navaltoday.com. It’s not just military members, Coast Guard or Merchant Mariners, there are also law enforcement and firefighting departments that have water-dedicated sections and burial at sea for the members of those sections would …

The Honor Guard Equipment Checklist

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These are suggestions for your team. Ceremonial Equipment 9.5′ flagstaffs with spade finial 4′ x 5.5′ (4′ x 6′) Indoor/Parade fringed flags US (0216) State Military Service Law enforcement Fire (7784) EMS (7625) POW/MIA (7724) Colors harnesses (the best for training) Colors harnesses (the best for performance) Flag Stands These are beautiful These are economical (AMG) Floor Stand Adapters for …

The “Ownership” Style of Leadership

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There really isn’t a style of leadership called the “Ownership Style”, it is the best way I have found to describe this very bad technique of leading subordinates. It most likely stems from selfishness, insecurity, and fear and it is wrong. Here is how it works. In each one of these pictures, there is at least one thing wrong. This …