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kiva Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-24-09 11:14 AM
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Enlisted Man Gets Burial Once Reserved For Officers
At Arlington National Cemetery, the sound of an Army band could be heard Friday as a young soldier was laid to rest. Spc. Joseph Hernandez, 24, died two weeks ago, when a roadside bomb hit his vehicle in Afghanistan...The band along with a colors team, an escort platoon and a horse-drawn caisson are reserved for full-honors military funerals. And before now, Hernandez wouldn't have qualified for one.

......

"Rank has nothing to do with honor," he says. "And my hypothetical example is that a second lieutenant can graduate officer candidate school. He could hypothetically die in a car accident and receive full honors at Arlington. Whereas an enlisted service member with 20 years in the Army could be killed in action over here or Afghanistan and receive a standard honors funeral. To me, that just doesn't pass the common sense test."

Finally, last month, the Army announced it was changing the policy to create a "common standard" for all soldiers killed in action and buried at Arlington.


http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=99...

Kudos to Sgt. 1st Class Robert Durbin for challenging this policy.
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Ilsa Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-24-09 11:17 AM
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1. Good. There is no reason for having "first vs second class" procedures for death. nt
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