Salutes & Awards

May 7, 2018
 

AF Honor Guard training team graduates Luke honor guardsmen

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Tech. Sgt. Clinton Atkins
Luke AFB, Ariz.

The honor guard rifle team stands ready during an exhibition at their graduation ceremony at Luke Air Force Base, Ariz., April 25, 2018. An Air Force Honor Guard mobile training team spent 10 days training 24 base honor guardsmen on dress and appearance, rifle team, color guard, and pallbearing.

An Air Force Honor Guard mobile training team from Joint Base Anacostia Bolling, Washington, D.C., graduated a group of 24 local honor guardsmen at Luke Air Force Base, Ariz., April 25, 2018.

The trainers from the Air Force’s premier honor guard spent 10 days with the group, ensuring they meet the honor guard’s high standards for dress and appearance, rifle team, color guard and pallbearing.

The base honor guardsmen displayed their polished skills during an exhibition of an active duty funeral sequence, which consists of a 20-member base honor guard team: seven for the rifle team, eight pallbearers, four color guardsmen and a bugler.

Tech. Sgt. Jerome Bryan, flight chief for the Air Force Honor Guard Training Flight, and his team, travels around the world to ensure the Air Force is well-represented when its base honor guard teams conduct funeral ceremonies.

The pallbearer team prepares to move a casket during an exhibition at their graduation ceremony at Luke Air Force Base, Ariz., April 25, 2018. The Luke Airmen performed a 20-member active duty funeral sequence, consisting of rifle team, color guard, pallbearers and a bugler.

“It’s all about representing every member of the Air Force,” he said. “Our goal is to ensure that when we go out there we represent them and we represent excellence, which is why we ensure everything is standardized, that whatever we train here we train at any other base the same exact way.”

Bryan praised the Luke Airmen for getting through the training and for their trainability and desire to learn.

“One of the most important things with Luke Air Force Base Honor Guard is the people. They seem to be very close knit, very coachable, very trainable, and they made the experience worthwhile,” he said.

Airman 1st Class Robin Cooter, 61st Aircraft Maintenance Unit crew chief and base honor guardsmen, said the whole Honor Guard experience is worthwhile and looks forward to continuing to represent Luke as the base provides its valued service across Arizona.

“Honor guard is so rewarding, going to these funerals, having these experiences, with people you don’t know, to give their spouse or family members’ their final rights. It’s one of the most rewarding things I’ve done in the military and probably my entire life,” he said.
 

The eight-member pallbearer team finishes folding the American flag during an exhibition at their graduation ceremony at Luke Air Force Base, Ariz., April 25, 2018. The team is used for active duty service member’s funeral ceremony.

 

Airman 1st Class Caitlin Diaz-Gorsi, base honor guardsman, delivers the message of condolence along with the folded American flag to a spouse role player during an exhibition at their graduation ceremony at Luke Air Force Base, Ariz., April 25, 2018. Twenty-four base honor guardsmen graduated from the 10-day training course.




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