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Cheese Grits
Col. of Charleston Fan
Wherever I lay my hat is my home
Member since Apr 2012
38943 posts

Old person observation of the day : 3 volleys and funerals
Was at a funeral of a Colonel (around 90) maybe 3 years ago and the service had 12 men
(private cemetery)
2 for flag
7 for volley (x3 for 21)
1 for taps
1 for commands
1 appeared to be observer and support

Was at a funeral of a Colonel (around 90) this summer and the service had 6 men
(VA cemetery)
2 for flag
3 for volley (x3 for 9) [one did double duty for taps]
1 for commands

Now usually seems the folks are a generation or two younger so a person in their 90's would have folks in their 70's to their 50's doing the honor guard work. Deduct 3 spend shells for the flag, that means 18 to the mourners, or in this case 6, so no shells for the grandchildren. After the service I thanked the nice men but wondered why they were a bit short of men. They said it is harder to get the full number.

Is this because they are literally dying off or they are not getting enough younger men to perform these duties?

While 3 volleys are required, fewer spent shells means no outreach to young generations?


Commander Data
Alabama Fan
Titletown, USA
Member since Dec 2016
6309 posts

re: Old person observation of the day : 3 volleys and funerals
Not sure why it would be hard to find 4 more men to shoot more volley. For those that don't know the ceremony dates back to the Europeans during war. They would literally stop the conflict in order to remove the dead from the battlefield and when they were done, three shots were fire signifying that battle could resume.


Wtodd
Missouri Fan
Tampa, FL
Member since Oct 2013
48805 posts
 Online 

re: Old person observation of the day : 3 volleys and funerals
quote:

Not sure why it would be hard to find 4 more men to shoot more volley

Go to the Outdoor Board and ask for volunteers; you'd never be short again.....oh yeah I'd do it.


Cheese Grits
Col. of Charleston Fan
Wherever I lay my hat is my home
Member since Apr 2012
38943 posts

re: Old person observation of the day : 3 volleys and funerals
Lots of VFW folks on that board?


Wtodd
Missouri Fan
Tampa, FL
Member since Oct 2013
48805 posts
 Online 

re: Old person observation of the day : 3 volleys and funerals
quote:

Lots of VFW folks on that board?

Nope just patriots looking for another reason to fire a weapon


Cheese Grits
Col. of Charleston Fan
Wherever I lay my hat is my home
Member since Apr 2012
38943 posts

re: Old person observation of the day : 3 volleys and funerals
I think you have to be current of former servicemen to play

Talked to another guy this am - which got me thinking about this in the first place - and seem getting Taps players is getting hard, they are using canned music for lack of folks. This just makes me sad in so many ways.
This post was edited on 9/17 at 4:21 pm


Arksulli
Arkansas Fan
Fayetteville
Member since Aug 2014
18430 posts

re: Old person observation of the day : 3 volleys and funerals
It comes down to how many people know that he passed away.

My father taught JROTC for more then a decade and everyone in town loved him, but he had been out of the public eye for years when he passed and we hardly got anyone at his funeral.

Now, the two or three weeks after he died and news got around town, we got hundreds of cards from people that had just heard the news. It has been more then two and a half years since he died and I still have people coming up to me in the grocery store telling me how much my father meant to them.


Cheese Grits
Col. of Charleston Fan
Wherever I lay my hat is my home
Member since Apr 2012
38943 posts

re: Old person observation of the day : 3 volleys and funerals
quote:

It comes down to how many people know that he passed away.


Normally I would agree

Colonel #1 became a teacher after service and taught for ages. Well loved, but seems under 40 set just does not pay respects anymore

Colonel #2 became a faith and community leader after service. Very well loved but nobody under 40 at service or visitation outside of grandchildren and great grandchildren

Dropping attendance - a sign of respect when I was a kid in the south - is another thing I notice at funerals these days.


Back on topic tho, usually honor guard is retired military or older active duty. Point is, are these folks disappearing and not being replaced by the younger set. Interesting your dad did JROTC as that seems a no brainer for folks to work the funeral. Did any youth do his honor guard and were any his former charges? Seems he should have had full crew. Was he buried private or VA?


Arksulli
Arkansas Fan
Fayetteville
Member since Aug 2014
18430 posts

re: Old person observation of the day : 3 volleys and funerals
We had a full honor guard from the JROTC. But they had been notified only two days before. It would have happened sooner but dad's NCO with the program was dealing with serious family health issues of his own.


TopFlightSecurity
Arkansas Fan
Watertown, NY
Member since Dec 2018
723 posts

re: Old person observation of the day : 3 volleys and funerals
Was it an active duty funeral detail?

Under the 2000 NDA every eligible veteran is entitled to a funeral team which is at least the presentation of the flag and a bugler (99% are recordings played through an actual bugle).

The other elements (color guard, firing party etc) depend on availability, rank, and service specifics (ie MoH winner).



Arksulli
Arkansas Fan
Fayetteville
Member since Aug 2014
18430 posts

re: Old person observation of the day : 3 volleys and funerals
quote:

Was it an active duty funeral detail?

Under the 2000 NDA every eligible veteran is entitled to a funeral team which is at least the presentation of the flag and a bugler (99% are recordings played through an actual bugle).

The other elements (color guard, firing party etc) depend on availability, rank, and service specifics (ie MoH winner).



Yes, we had a gentleman come up from Fort Hood. He had actually served with my father at Great Lakes Navy Base (MEPCOM was stationed there and its a joint command which is how we got stuck on a Navy base for years).

Oddly enough, while dad never joined the VFW it seemed like every time we went somewhere he'd run into an old service buddy. I have fond memories of a gent we ran into down in Florida who tried the challenge coin thing on my father. Only for dad to pull out not one, but four different challenge coins he'd picked up over the years.


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Wtodd
Missouri Fan
Tampa, FL
Member since Oct 2013
48805 posts
 Online 

re: Old person observation of the day : 3 volleys and funerals
quote:

and seem getting Taps players is getting hard

It's been hard for a very long time.

quote:

think you have to be current of former servicemen to play

I qualify as I'm sure a fair amount do on the Outdoor Board.


Cheese Grits
Col. of Charleston Fan
Wherever I lay my hat is my home
Member since Apr 2012
38943 posts

re: Old person observation of the day : 3 volleys and funerals
quote:

I qualify




quote:

I'm sure a fair amount do on the Outdoor Board.


I just don't post that board, but if you are a regular maybe put up a PSA to get the younger kids involved in their local communities.

quote:

It's been hard for a very long time.


Is it a person issue or an issue of the instrument itself, and kids not knowing how to play anymore?


Wtodd
Missouri Fan
Tampa, FL
Member since Oct 2013
48805 posts
 Online 

re: Old person observation of the day : 3 volleys and funerals
quote:

Is it a person issue or an issue of the instrument itself, and kids not knowing how to play anymore?

If memory serves me correctly, just not enough people that know how to play it and as you well know this isn't a tune you want to screw up at a funeral.

quote:

but if you are a regular maybe put up a PSA to get the younger kids involved in their local communities.

Solid advice.....I'm on my way there right now


Cheese Grits
Col. of Charleston Fan
Wherever I lay my hat is my home
Member since Apr 2012
38943 posts

re: Old person observation of the day : 3 volleys and funerals
quote:

I'm on my way there right now


Thanks

Need both buglers and volley folks.



Arksulli
Arkansas Fan
Fayetteville
Member since Aug 2014
18430 posts

re: Old person observation of the day : 3 volleys and funerals
quote:

Need both buglers and volley folks.


It is the very least we can do. As some have said in this thread the respect for the deceased just isn't what it used to be.


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