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To honor with dignity

F. E. Warren AFB, Wyo. -- The honor code: "We will not lie, steal, or cheat, nor tolerate among us anyone who does."

In recent times the honor code and words like dignity and duty have lost their meaning. They have become slogans, catch phrases and punch lines. Everyday we hear and read of politicians being dishonest, generals demoted to staff officers and Airmen cheating or stealing money during a partial do-it-yourself move.

Have you ever not filled your gas tank when weighing your car empty, or removed the spare tire? Take a moment before continuing and reflect on what honor is to you.

There are a select few on this base to whom honor is everything; they are your base honor guard. Comprised entirely of volunteers, people who are highly motivated and maintain high standards of appearance and conduct are considered for this duty. The primary purpose of the honor guard is to provide funeral honors. Other duties include honoring the Colors, retirement ceremonies and marching in parades.

But the honor guard is more than just an additional duty or bullet on a performance report, it is about honor. Honor is a foundation upon which character is built. We have all heard examples of honor and character, but do you apply these qualities everyday? The honor guard members live up to these standards, and I want to thank the team for their dedication and deciding to constantly do their best. It is not an easy decision, but not all decisions come easily -- especially those made for the right reason.

In my past four years, these honor guard members are some of the greatest Airmen I have had the privilege to work with. They are tasked with representing the base and American flag. The flag is a symbol of our nation, our strength and the unfaltering will of the military to achieve whatever we are called to do. The honor guard represents both proudly and without fail.

In today's military, expectations are high. The Air Force is going through radical changes, and during this period of capitalization we have all heard that we need to do "more with less." The honor guard does more at their job and more for their base. It's duties may take a full day, or a Saturday morning, but these volunteers are there. Let your Airmen do more, and I promise you will be impressed with what they can accomplish. I want to thank the supervisors for releasing their honor guard members for details. Without your support we could not accomplish our duty. You allow us to honor our fallen comrades, honor the flag and accomplish all we can.

Calvin Coolidge, the 30th president of the United States, once said, "No person was ever honored for what he received. Honor has been the reward for what he gave." This is the reward you will receive from the Warren Honor Guard. If you want to experience honor, come see what the Warren Honor Guard has for you.