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The United States Marine Corps Silent Drill Platoon executes precise drill movements without cadence or command during the Battle Color Ceremony Feb. 29 at Lance Cpl. Torrey L. Gray Field. The Silent Drill Platoon is made up of 24 hand-picked, highly-trained Marines that carry M-1 Garand Rifles with bayonets attached. The Marines are trained to spin, toss and catch these rifles in synchronized order within mere inches of the Marine next to him.

Photo by Lance Cpl. Monica C. Erickson

Battle Color Detachment storms through Combat Center

29 Feb 2008 | Lance Cpl. Monica C. Erickson

The United States Marine Corps Battle Color Detachment left the Combat Center in awe after their performance at Lance Cpl. Torrey L. Gray Field Feb. 29.

 The Battle Color Detachment is comprised of the United States Marine Drum and Bugle Corps, United States Marine Corps Silent Drill Platoon and Official Color Guard of the Marine Corps.

 The ceremony opened with the Drum and Bugle Corps marching onto the field playing an assortment of traditional Marine Corps music to a very well-known band standard, “Malagueña” by Ernesto Lecuona.

 “I thought it was just going to be a bunch of Marine Corps songs,” said 11-year-old Shane Weston, son of Col. Wes Weston, assistant chief of staff, G-4 logistics. “It was totally uplifting and impossible to keep a straight face.”

 Weston, a Tampa, Fla., native, said every aspect of the performance was amazing, forcing him to the edge of his seat.

 The Drum and Bugle Corps closed their performance with John Phillip Sousa’s “Semper Fidelis,” then stepped aside as the Silent Drill Platoon took over the field.

 The 24 Marines of the Silent Drill Platoon performed synchronized drill movements without commands or cadences while carrying M-1 Garand rifles with bayonets attached.

 Marines executed precise movements as rifles sliced through the air coming within inches of their unwavering comrades.

 “These Marines spent a lot of time training and practicing the routine,” said Capt. Edson Greenwood, Silent Drill Platoon commander and Philadelphia native. “They looked really

 good today.

 “This entire routine shows the dedication and excellence every Marine expects, and what America expects from the Marine Corps,” added Greenwood.

 Silence fell over the crowd as Marines and civilians stood to honor and salute the official battle colors of the Marine Corps as they were marched onto the field.

 There are 54 streamers and silver bands that represent military campaigns the Marine Corps has been involved in dating back to the Revolutionary War.

 As the ceremony ended, Marines from the Drum and Bugle Corps and Silent Drill Platoon answered questions and let children from Condor, Twentynine Palms and Landers elementary schools take a look at their rifles and instruments.

 Lance Cpl. Anthony Calpino with the Drum and Bugle Corps gave children an opportunity to hold his soprano bugle while explaining what it takes to be a Marine in the Drum and Bugle Corps.

 Calpino, a Reading, Penn., native, said the Battle Color Detachment is meant to inspire and motivate everyone who watches the performance, filling them with pride.

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