The mystery surrounding the revoking of the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier Identification Badge is something that has been talked about in ad nauseam. The reason for the confusion regarding the revoking of the Tomb Badge is that it is the only badge in the military that can be revoked, either when the soldier is in service or out of service.
1stly, according to the Society of the Honor Guard Tomb of the Unknown Soldier's frequently asked questions: http://tombguard.org/society/faq/ "The Tomb Guard Identification Badge (TGIB) is awarded after the Sentinel passes a series of tests. The TGIB is permanently awarded after a Sentinel has served nine months as a Sentinel at the Tomb. Over 600 have been awarded since its creation in the late 1950's (on average 10 per year). And while the TGIB can be revoked, the offense must be such that it discredits the Tomb of the Unknowns. Revocation is at the 3rd Infantry Regimental Commander’s discretion and can occur while active duty or even when the Sentinel is a civilian. The TGIB is a full size award, worn on the right pocket of the uniform jacket, not a lapel pin."
"2ndly, from sentinel Lonny LeGrand, "A 'Revoked' badge is just that, its been revoked due to actions that bring discredited to the individual and disrespect to the Tomb. Once a Sentinel is awarded his badge it only becomes permanent after that Sentinel has completed no less than 9 months service at the Tomb. Most every Sentinel will test out and receive their badge before that 9 month period, which at any time during that period or after, the badge can be revoked. An altercation with Law Enforcement Officer that leads to an arrest, a disrespectful action to a superior while still in the military are just a couple of things to name. Every situation is evaluated on an as is basis.
As for the Badge Board, the names listed there are Badgeholders that have been issued a badge, permanent orders for their badge comes later but at the the time of award they are issued a placard that gets mounted on the board. Once a Badgeholder has had their badge "Revoked" their placard with name is removed from the board and replaced with one that reads "Revoked" and the badge number is never to be used again.
Hope that helps... Lonny LeGrand, Badge #249."
3rdly, it is actually a very painful and horrible event to have happen to any Soldier, and the revoking of the badge is official and extends to the Soldiers DD214 which is the official U.S. Army records. No other badge or award in the military can be revoked, but when you are a guard of Honor at our nations most sacred place then you are held to a higher standard throughout your life.
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Please check out our new documentary film 'The Unknowns' - www.theunknownsmovie.com - to get a behind the scenes look at what it takes to be a Tomb Guard, and learn some of the history behind the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.
Ethan Morse, Badge #548
Tomb of the Unknown Soldier (2005-2006)