tomb of unknowns

On Jeopardy the other night, the final question was “How many steps does the guard take during his walk across the Tomb of the Unknowns?" 

All three got it wrong. 

This is really an awesome sight to watch if you’ve never had the chance. 

Tomb of the Unknown Soldier 

1. How many steps does the guard take during his walk across the tomb of the Unknowns and why? 

Twenty-one steps. It alludes to the twenty-one gun salute, which is the highest honor given any military or foreign dignitary. 

2. How long does he hesitate after his about-face to begin his returning walk and why? 

Twenty-one seconds for the same reason as the answer of #1.

3. Why are his gloves wet? 

His gloves are moistened to prevent him from losing his grip on the rifle. 

4. Does he carry his rifle on the same shoulder all the time and if not, why not?

He carries the rifle on the shoulder away from the tomb. After his march across the path, he executes an about-face and moves the rifle to the outside shoulder. 

5. How often are the guards changed? 

Guards are changed every thirty minutes, twenty-four hours a day, 365 days a year. 

6. What are the physical traits of the guard limited to? 

For a person to apply for guard duty at the tomb, he must be between 5’ 10″ and 6’ 2″ tall and his waist size cannot exceed 30″. 

Other requirements of the Guard: 

They must commit two years of life to guard the tomb, live in a barracks under the tomb, and cannot drink any alcohol on or off duty for the rest of their lives. They cannot swear in public for the rest of their lives and cannot disgrace the uniform or the tomb in any way. After two years, the guard is given a wreath pin that is worn on their lapel signifying they served as guard of the tomb. There are only 400 presently worn. The guard must obey these rules for the rest of their lives or give up the wreath pin. The shoes are specially made with very thick soles to keep the heat and cold from their feet. There are metal heel plates that extend to the top of the shoe in order to make the loud click as they come to a halt. There are no wrinkles, folds or lint on the uniform. Guards dress for duty in front of a full-length mirror. The first six months of duty a guard cannot talk to anyone, nor watch TV. All off duty time is spent studying the 175 notable people laid to rest in Arlington National Cemetery. A guard must memorize who they are and where they are interred. Among the notables are: President Taft, Joe E. Lewis (the boxer) and Medal of Honor winner Audie Murphy, (the most decorated soldier of WWII.) Every guard spends five hours a day getting his uniform ready for guard duty. 

In 2003 as Hurricane Isabelle was approaching Washington, DC, our US Senate/House took two days off with anticipation of the storm. On the ABC evening news, it was reported that because of the dangers from the hurricane, the military members assigned the duty of guarding the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier were given permission to suspend the assignment. They respectfully declined the offer. Soaked to the skin, marching in the pelting rain of a tropical storm, they said that guarding the Tomb was not just an assignment, it was the highest honor that can be awarded to a service-person. 

The tomb has been patrolled continuously, 24/7, since 1930.

One of the most famous monuments in all of France, the Arc De Triomphe was built to honor the fallen soldiers of the French Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars (and not the host of L'Apprentice, Donald Triomphe). It’s an impressive, Roman-inspired architectural marvel with an opening large enough for a suicidal idiot to barnstorm an airplane through.

Beneath the Arc is a WWI tomb for unknown soldiers, whose ghosts probably feel pretty thankful that they weren’t forced to spend eternity underneath another of the proposed designs for the monument: a monstrous, water-spewing circus elephant.

6 Iconic Monuments That Almost Looked Completely Insane

Arc de Triomphe - France

The construction of the  Arc de Triomphe was ordered in 1806 by the French Emperor Napoleon. It was built to honour the French army, then known as the Grande Armee, who had conquered much of Europe and were considered invincible. The names of 128 battles are inscribed on the white walls of the Arc, along with the Generals who took part in them. 

Beneath the Arc is the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, accompanied by an eternal flame, which burns in memory of all soldiers who have never been identified. 

3

Requested by artynerd23! I’d love to be the mother of Cisco’s kid. Damn. I’d take that challenge with great honor. It would be like guarding the tomb of the unknown soldier (I make this analogy for I live in America).

I stared down at the stick between my fingers. Tears spilled over, and I just cried happily on the bathroom floor. Cisco had proposed to me a few nights ago, and let’s just say some ‘activities’ happened after we got home from dinner. But over the past few days, I had been getting sick. 

At first, I thought it was just a cold, but I had my suspicions when I consulted Caitlin. She suggested I take a pregnancy test and call her as soon as I got the results. And here I was, holding a small stick with 2 red lines.

I scrambled to stand, instinctively placing my hand across my stomach and reaching for my phone. I pressed Caitlin’s contact, continually crying tears of joy.

“(Y/N)? What’s up? What did the tests say?” Caitlin asked immediately, excitement lacing her words.

“Caitlin,” I started, trying to calm myself.

“I’M CARRYING A MINI RAMON!” I screamed, laughing as I heard Caitlin scream on the other end. 

 “REALLY! OH MY GOSH! WHAT ARE YOU GONNA NAME THEM? IF IT’S A GIRL, IT BETTER HAVE THE NAME CAITLIN!” She squealed on the other end. 

“Alright, you can’t tell Cisco just yet, alright? I don’t know how he’d react.” I said, rubbing my hand across my stomach, a smile gracing my features. 

“(Y/N), dear, for as long as I’ve known Cisco, he’s always wanted a kid. Preferably a little girl, so he could raise a new female nerd. But I am positive he will love your child either way.” Caitlin’s words calmed me, and I soon heard the front door open.

“Cait, he’s home. I gotta go.” I whispered, and she whispered back her bye.

“Baby, are you doing okay?” I heard Cisco call from the living room. I opened the bathroom door slowly, tucking the pregnancy test into my pocket, and going out to meet Cisco. 

He immediately wrapped his arms around me, placing kisses all over my face. I giggled, leaning away slightly. He purred, pulling my head up and connecting his lips to mine. I kissed back, smiling into the kiss. 

I pulled back slightly, contemplating if I should tell him just yet or not. 

“Come with my Cisco.” I said, taking his hand in mine, and leading him to the dining room table. I sat him next to me, and worry crossed his features.

“What’s wrong Queen of Mordor?” Cisco joked, trying to see if something was terribly wrong. I giggled, signaling to him, in our own way, that it was nothing life threatening. 

“I-I have something to show you.” I whispered, pulling the stick out of my pocket, and handing it to him. 

He was confused at first, but as soon as he turned the stick over, he went bug eyed. He looked up at me, than down at the test, then back up at me again. Tears began to fall from his eyes, along with I wide smile gracing his cheeks.

“I’m pregnant Cisco. You’re gonna be a dad.” I laughed out, beginning to cry with him.

He immediately pulled me towards him, sobbing loudly, and putting me into his lap.

“I-I’m gonna be a dad!” He cried into my shoulder, and I hugged him also.

“We’re gonna be parents Cisco.” I cried back, rubbing circles into his shoulder. 

“What are we gonna name them?” Cisco asked, pulling his head off my shoulder and wiping his tears. 

“I say, if a girl, Caitlin, and if a boy, Bartholomew.” I smiled up at him, curling up more in his lap.

“Perfect.” He whispered, placing his hand on my stomach. I placed my hand atop his, and looked him dead in the eyes. 

“I promise I’ll protect our child, and you, from anything any world throws at us. Even if it means I have to advance my powers, I will.” Cisco whispered, placing his forehead against mine.

For once in a long time, I felt safe.

5

Memorial Day

On May 11, 1950, Congress issued a joint resolution requesting that the President proclaim a “Prayer for Peace” on each Memorial Day.  In 1971, Congress declared Memorial Day a federal holiday to be held on the last Monday of every May. 

The commemoration of fallen soldiers was originally called Decoration Day – a time to honor Civil War graves with flowers.  The first Decoration Day was observed on May 30, 1868, three years after the end of the Civil War. 

Over time, people adopted the name Memorial Day, and ceremonies were held across the country to honor all U.S. soldiers who had died at war. 

This Memorial Day weekend, we honor the men and women who have served our country.

Images:

George W. Bush stands with U.S. Army Major General Guy Swan for a moment of silence during the Memorial  Day wreath laying ceremony at the Arlington National Cemetery Tomb of the Unknowns. 5/29/06.

Harry S. Truman laying a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier for Memorial Day ceremonies.  5/30/48.

Ronald Reagan attending a Memorial Day ceremony honoring the Vietnam Unknown Soldier at Arlington National Cemetery. 5/28/84.

Dwight D. Eisenhower participates in the ceremonies for the internment of the Unknowns of World War II and Korea. Arlington National Cemetery. 5/30/58.

A bugler plays during a Memorial Day ceremony at Arlington National Cemetery attended by John F. Kennedy. 5/30/63.

At Arlington National Cemetery, a snow storm is knocking temperatures down into the single digits (factoring in wind chill) as record snow falls near our nation’s capital. But members of the 3d U.S. Infantry Regiment, also known as “The Old Guard” are staying with the Tomb of the Unknown Solider at Arlington National Cemetery. (U.S. Army photo by Cpl. Cody W. Torkelson)

The Shadowrun Hong Kong Protag, wearing sunglasses:
  • Taking a selfie next to Gaichu: Meet me in the tomb of the unknown samurai in 43 minutes if you want an ass kicking.
  • Taking a selfie next to Rachter: Meet me at the transhumanism subreddit in two hours if you want an ass kicking.
  • Taking a selfie next to Duncan, who looks like he's about to explode: Meet me at Dink's Premium Twinks in the next forty eight seconds if you want an ass kicking.
  • Taking a selfie next to Is0bel: Meet me at the Octopus's garden in the next fourteen minutes if you want an ass kicking.
  • Taking a selfie next to Gobbet: Meet me in the cute garbage disposal in the next three days if you want an ass kicking.
  • Taking a selfie next to Reliable Matthew who is grinning and pointing like eeeeey: Meet me on the island for misfit toys in exactly 15 minutes if you want an ass kicking.
4

Women from the first all-female honor flight in the United Sates watch a Changing of the Guard ceremony at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at Arlington National Cemetery, Sept. 22, 2015, in Arlington, Va. There were 75 female veterans from World War II, Korean War and Vietnam War in attendance, as well as 75 escorts, who were also female veterans or active-duty military.

(U.S. Army photo by Rachel Larue/released)

Writing Prompt

To honor Metro Man the local planetarium puts together an exhibit commemorating the solar system that was destroyed by the black hole. The setup is extensive, scale models, planet info, Imax documentary with digital renderings, a memorial to all the sentient peoples that lost their lives (a ‘tomb of the unknown soldier’ kinda deal). Metro man is invited to be the guest of honor during the unveiling. 

Megamind shows up uninvited, not as a crasher, but as a mourner.

Unknown Soldier - One Shot

Author: Admin GCV
Title: Unknown Soldier
Chapter no/One Shot: One shot
Words number: 492
Original imagine: /// 
Notes/Warnings: Requested by anonymous “Imagine going to Arlington National Cemetery with Steve and watching the change of guard and the tomb of the Unknown”. This is short, I know, but I hope you like it! 


You and Steve were walking through the streets and paths of the Arlington National Cemetery. It was huge, you couldn’t even imagine a place like that with so many graves, and they were all soldiers.
In all those years you lived in Washington you never went there, maybe because you didn’t like cemeteries so much, but when Steve asked you if you wanted to go with him at the tomb of the Unknown you couldn’t refuse. You were curious.
It was few minutes too 6 pm so you picked up the pace to not miss the change of the guard and wait half an hour for the next one.
You two stood on the stairs behind the chain that divided you from the tomb, actually you didn’t expect to find a lot of people, but you were wrong, after few minutes there wasn’t a free spot.
Since it was December it was really cold, your breathe condensed in the air, and Steve surely noticed that you were trembling a bit because he hugged you from behind.
«Is it better now?» he asked whispering in your hear.
You nodded smiling. 
The change of the guard began and everyone looked in silence, and you weren’t an exception. 
A man arrived from your right and marched towards the other one that was already standing there. It was like a choreography. Their movements were so rigorous and without mistakes, perfectly synchronized: you wondered how much training was behind that, probably a lot because they seemed perfect!
The men marched for 4 minutes before standing one in front of the other, and in that moment began the part that you enjoyed the most. One of the two soldiers gave the other one his rifle and he took it and began to inspect it. It was like a feather in his hands, so light, but you knew that should have weigh a lot. In one hand, in the other, he controlled every inch of the weapon. In the end he returned the rifle to the other soldier and walked away. 
A shiver run down your spine, but it wasn’t the cold. In some way that change of the guard touched you. A lot of thoughts run through your mind.
«Steve, do you ever think about who is the Unknown Soldier?»
He sighed «During the war I met a lot of people that died, I constantly think if one of them is in the tomb of the Second World War.»
«Do you think that there’s a possibility that…» you began the sentence but you didn’t want to finish it, maybe it wasn’t the right thing to say. But Steve understood.
«That Bucky is in there? I don’t know» he was still hugging you from the behind whilst saying those things, and he kissed gently your cheek when your look was still on the graves.
Few seconds later you felt something cold and wet touching your face. It was snowing.

2

Mussolini and Hitler with others officials on the steps of the Vittoriano. Italy, May 1938.

The Monumento nazionale a Vittorio Emanuele II, better known as the Vittoriano or Altare della Patria, is a national monument located in Rome, on the Campidoglio, designed by architect Giuseppe Sacconi. The name “Vittoriano” is derived from Vittorio Emanuele II di Savoia, the first king of Italy. Since 1921 the monument holds the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, and gained a new symbolic value, initially thought of as a dynastic monument finally became a celebration of union and freedom.

Bonus: