The United States Air Force Honor Guard Drill Team
The U.S. Air Force Honor Guard originated in 1948 when Headquarters Command, U.S. Air Force, directed the creation of an elite ceremonial unit. The ceremonial unit was activated within the 1100th Air Police Squadron at Bolling AFB, Washington, D.C., with the responsibility of maintaining an Air Force ceremonial capability in the National Capital Region. The Honor Guard officially became a separate squadron in 1972,and the unit remains at the base now known as Joint Base Anacostia-Bolling, Washington, D.C.
The Honor Guard has evolved into a selectively manned unit with more than 210 ceremonial guardsmen and support personnel. Organizationally, the U.S. Air Force Honor Guard consists of four ceremonial flights, made up of Colors, Bearers, Firing Party and Parade Flight qualified personnel. The Honor Guard also operates the U.S. Air Force Drill Team. Together, the ceremonial flights perform an average of 10 ceremonies per day, and more than 2,500 ceremonies annually. They remain a very high visibility ambassador to military drill excellence around the world!
The Air Force Honor Guard Drill Team is comprised of twenty-five airmen. A USAFHG Drill Team member is deemed "performance ready" after six months of rigorous training. Typically, the Drill Team trains five days a week for 8-10 hours per day. Many individuals put in a considerable amount of "after hours" training. To be selected to be on the drill team, you must be an Active Duty member of the Air Force and selected to be a member of the Honor Guard. After completing the Honor Guard eight-week technical training school, you'll are given opportunities to apply for and "try-out" for the Drill Team. The goal is to have each member serve a two-year commitment to the team.
The performance drill team has undergone many recent changes that propelled their inclusion into the Military Drill Hall of Fame. While they have always been a high profiles ambassador, for many years they seemed to toil in the shadow of their more well known peers in the Army Drill Team and the Marine Corps Silent Drill Platoon. However, in the past few years, the level of professionalism, polish and overall excellence in presentation to both military and civilian audiences has risen to a level that is on par with any professional drill done anywhere on the planet. Their current routine blends very difficult maneuvers recently added to the routine but also leaves decades old favorites that play homage to the history of this illustrious group. It is an honor and privilege to feature the U.S. Air Force Honor Guard Drill Team within the National Drill Hall of Fame.
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