Posted on Mar 18, 2014
CW2 Cbrn Warrant Officer
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While at the Drill Sergeant school I have seen many senior/junior NCOs come through the course unprepared. There is a significant lack of knowledge in regards to the Drill and Ceremonies topic. Few are able to march an element smaller than a squad around the block and back.

I know, know: deployments, war, OPTEMPO, NTC, leave, Disney World... They all play a factor. However, it is my personal believe that all Soldiers should know how to execute drills at their own level i.e. Individual, squad, company, and (yes SGM) Battalion. SGM I've seen you out there during parades, struggling.

I know you've seen some of them yahoos out there during funeral detail, flag ceremonies, parades, reviews, or just marching down the street (by that I mean walking in a cluster ...you know what...).

I'm not the sharpest tool in the shed, but I can make one hell of a cut!

Don't have Soldiers? No problem! Where is your knowledge base?

Is it much to ask for proficiency within this area? Is it antiquated or does it need some serious polishing?
Posted in these groups: Drill Drill Sergeant
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Responses: 5
SFC William Swartz Jr
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It was an important part of the Army prior to the GWOT, then as with some common MOS tasks (in most all MOSs), it became something that got put on the back burner as less important. I know it was a part of the POI for PLDC, excuse me WLC, back when I was an SGL '00-'02, not sure if it is now or not, but it should be. As the Army transitions back to a more-Garrison like environment, it will probably become important again. I agree with SFC Gates for the most part, that there are so many more important tasks that NCOs can be training their/your Soldiers on, but I also know that there are times when you are sitting around waiting for COB to come around when you can take your Soldiers behind the orderly room or into the parking lot and conduct D&C training. It is a traditional part of our Army that should be maintained as you WILL, at some point if you are in long enough, take part in some kind of formal change of command where you will need to conduct a pass & review and other D&C fundamentals. That's just the humble opinion of an older retired fart though!
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Maj Chris Nelson
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Personally, Being both Army and Air Force, i can only remember using D&C 5 or 10 times TOTAL in the last 26 years.  For Honor Guard, it needs to be known.  Basic Training, Needs to be learned.  For Change of Command, it can be practiced.  While I don't think it needs to go, I think it is unrealistic to think everyone is "spot on" with this.  Just like a forgein language....if it isn't used, you loose it.
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SFC Recruiter
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Drill and ceremony is the foundation of discipline. If we desire soldiers that can respond effectively to commands and execute with precision when conducting complex tasks, I believe we need to begin with basic functions. That is largely on us as leaders to refine our abilities to teach and correct- so I ask, is it that d&c is antiquated, or is it our understandings of our roles as professional soldiers?

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