From the Stillwaters Email Bag!

From the Stillwaters Email Bag!

A Stillwaters resident recently shared an email with amazing facts surrounding guarding the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.  It is quite an elite group of guards with very tough training requirements. Being thankful about many things during this season I thought I would share this as another item to add to our thankful list. Thankful there are individuals who willingly go through strenuous training and duty for the privilege of protecting this important place.

Guarding the tomb
Guarding the tomb

Below are some of the interesting facts:

How many steps does the guard take during his walk across the tomb of the Unknowns and why?
21 steps: It alludes to the twenty-one gun salute which is the highest honor given any military or foreign dignitary.

How long does the hesitate after the about face to begin the return walk and why?
21 seconds for the same reason as answer number 1

Why are their gloves wet?
The gloves are moistened to prevent losing their grip on the rifle.

Do they carry their rifle on the same shoulder all the time and, if not, why not?
They carry the rifle on the shoulder away from the tomb. After their march across the path, they execute an about face and moves the rifle to the outside shoulder.

How often are the guards changed?
Guards are changed every thirty minutes, twenty-four hours a day, 365 days a year.

What are the physical traits of the guard limited to?
For a person to apply for guard duty at the tomb, they must be between 5′ 10′ and 6′ 2′ tall and their waist size cannot exceed 30.

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.

For more information about this elite group go to:

The Tomb Guard

Quote of the week:
Your own resolution to success is more important than any other one thing. – Abraham Lincoln

Happenings this week: ♫ Tis the Season ♫

Decorating treeTuesday, December 2nd: Lewis County Community Band Concert, 7:30 p.m. at Centralia College. Free Concert of instrumental music.

Wednesday, December 3rd: Centralia College Choir Concert, 7:00 p.m. at the Harrison Square Presbyterian Church. This is a free concert to celebrate the season.

Saturday, December 6th: The Historic Fox Theatre presents “A Christmas Story” with a 2:00 and 7:00 p.m. showing. Price is $8 per person or $20 per family for a family of four. A fun holiday tradition at the Fox Theatre!


weather-snowOur rather temperate rainy weather is turning to cold and possibly snow tomorrow. The long term forecast is for rain and windy weather into December, so hopefully we will just get a hint of snow tomorrow and back to normal weather after that.

Matthew Williams

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