Fontana resident joins US Navy Ceremonial Guard | News
Fontana-native Airman Marco Ruiz underwent an intensive 10-week training program to become a member of the US Navy’s elite Ceremonial Guard.
“I joined the Navy because I always wanted to serve my country while traveling the world and exploring career opportunities,” Ruiz said.
Founded in 1931, the United States Navy Ceremonial Guard is the official honor guard of the United States Navy and is based at Naval District Washington Anacostia Annex in Washington, D.C.
According to Navy officials, the primary mission of the U.S. Navy Ceremonial Guard is to represent the service at presidential, joint armed forces, Navy and public ceremonies in and around the nation’s capital. Members of the Navy’s Ceremonial Guard participate in some of the nation’s most prestigious ceremonies, including presidential inaugurations and arrival ceremonies for foreign officials.
“What I love the most about the Ceremonial Guard is that I work with great people and do cool stuff,” Ruiz said.
Ceremonial Guard sailors are hand-picked while attending boot camp at Recruit Training Command in Great Lakes, Illinois. Strict military order and discipline, combined with teamwork, enable members of the Ceremonial Guard to carry out their responsibilities with pride and determination. They are experts in the art of close exercise, coordination and timing.
The ceremonial guard is made up of the drill team, color party, casket bearers, and firing party.
Pallbearers carry former members of the Navy to their final resting place. The gun party renders the 21-gun salute, the signature honor of military funerals, at every Navy burial at Arlington National Cemetery.
There are many opportunities for sailors to gain recognition for their command, community and career.
“I’m very proud to have completed the initial training to become a guard,” Ruiz said. “It’s very intense, but with the proper mentorship and discipline, I can definitely say it was one of my greatest accomplishments.”