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Minnesota National Guard
National Guard honor teams compete in Minnesota

http://wwwkare11com/assetpool/images/100922110615_HonorGuard3jpg MINNEAPOLIS - It is not unusual for a rigorous competition to have a break room Just don't expect to see anyone sitting in it, as Minneapolis plays host to the nation's top Army National Guard funeral honor teams
Sitting causes wrinkles, which is why the folding chairs are going unused this week at the 133rd Airlift Wing

"It's exacting, to say the least," said Capt Dan Rebmann, the manager of the Guard's military funeral honors program National Guard honor teams serve at the funerals of more than 120,000 veterans each year, more than half of the military funerals performed in the United States

Teams from seven regions traveled to Minnesota for the competition An eighth team from Minnesota was given an automatic berth as last year's national champion

"We're proud to be from Minnesota and we want to bring this home," said Sgt Bradley Williams, who commands the state's honor teams Eight competitors were chosen, from among Minnesota's 25 full-time and 50 part-time honor team members Minnesota National Guard honor teams perform roughly 400 funerals a month across the state

In competition, honor teams are judged for their precision and poise as they carry weighted caskets, perform gun salutes and stand at attention

Among the judges are representatives from the Old Guard at Arlington National Cemetery, which sets the standards for military honor guards across the country, "It's this country's way of paying its final respects to its veterans and it's a very important job," said Rebmann

(Copyright 2010 by KARE All Rights Reserved)
By Boyd Huppert
Updated: 9/23/2010 8:13:51 AM

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