19th Rifle Co. Funeral Home Detail honors WWII US Army Veteran, Jesus M.Chavira, 94, at Crestview Funeral Home, on Thursday, January 12, 2017. From left, Manuel Mendoza, Andy Pacheco, Luis Diaz, Billy Holguin, Ray Marquez, George Cortez, Ted Vasquez, Oscar Muela, Pete Rivera, Gabby Garibay, Eddie DeSantiago, & Alfredo Villarreal.
THE FEW, THE PROUD
19th RIFLE CO., USMCR FOUNDATION
EL PASO MARINE HONORS TEAM
The 19th Rifle Co., USMCR Foundation and the Deane Hawkins Detachment of the Marine Corps League entered into a joint venture when they gathered to pay military honors to deceased Marine Corporal Donald Gillis, age 86, on December 23, 2013 at Ft. Bliss National Cemetery. On the day of their debút, the Ceremonial Rifles Team escorted the casket to the gravesite; played taps; and fired 3 volley shots.
Being a Marine means being a part of a legacy; from the naval actions of the American Revolution to Iwo Jima, Vietnam. and the mountains of Afghanistan, Marines have served valiantly. For hundreds of years Marines have fought, lived, and died with honor.
The Ceremonial Rifles Cemetery Honors Team is continuing the Marine Corps legacy of service to our nation, fellow Marines, and fellow veterans. These dedicated members of the Ceremonial Rifles Cemetery Detail are Marines who hold themselves to the highest standards of character and are ever faithful to their duty by gathering weekly for practice at Ft. Bliss, Building #2950. Constant practice ensures a precise and well executed military honors ceremony; whether it be in the heat of summer or the cold of winter.
These few and proud Marines provide fitting funeral military honors for deceased Marines and the deceased of other military services at the request of their families.
Members of the Ceremonial Rifles Team carry the 11 lb. M1 Garand rifle that fires .30 caliber blank ammunition and automatically ejects its brass. The seven-man detail fires a 3-volley salute in a precisely executed maneuver.
Robert Way, Commandant of the Deane Hawkins Detachment of the Marine Corps League is the NCOIC; calling out the commands throughout the ceremony.
Members of the Ceremonial Rifles Detail are: Robert Aguilar, Fred Beck, Ruben Casas, George Cortez, Eddie DeSantiago, Luis Diaz, George Duron, Alfonso Garibay, Pete Gomez, Frank Juarez, Oscar Muela, Andy Pacheco, John Paul, Ascension Peña, and Ted Vasquez. When called upon, Alex Sepulveda plays “Taps” on the ceremonial bugle.
As to the age of these men; some are sexagenarians (60), most are septuagenarians (70), and one or two are octogenarians (80). They volunteer willingly despite their aches, pains, and other age-related maladies.
Team members wear white shirts, black slacks, black shoes, red garrison cap with respective unit identification, red windbreaker, and a black belt with brass plate with the Eagle, Globe, and Anchor.
In the more than two years since its inception, the Ceremonial Rifles Cemetery Honors Team has performed more than 150 funeral military honors for Marines, Army Soldiers, Navy Sailors, and Air Force Airmen. The Ceremonial Rifles Detail expects no remuneration; the service is gratis; the men do it as a heartfelt act in behalf of their fellow veterans and the families of the deceased.
19th RIFLE CO., USMCR FOUNDATION FUNERAL DETAIL 2017
EL PASO MARINE HONOR CEREMONIAL RIFLES UNIT