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Last Retreat at Miramare
Ends Era of Castle Guard
4 August 1954
The Miramare Castle Honor Guard held its final retreat last Wednesday evening [4 August 1954] at 16:50 in the castle courtyard. Twenty-eight soldiers from the 351st Infantry Regiment, traditional guards of the castle since 1948, stood their last ceremony before handing over their posts to the 281st MP Company, who now take over the vital job of guarding the nerve center of TRUST
The ceremony at Miramare opened with the two guard reliefs - Able under the command of acting Sergeant James J. Bergman, Baker commanded by acting Sergeant John P. Beto - marching out into the courtyard. TRUST Commanding General Maj. Gen. John A. Dabney, standing in front of the castle arch, surveyed the three gleaming ranks of his guard for the last time.
1st Lt. Bernard Garred, Castle Guard Commandant, reported, "Sir, your Miramare Castle Honor Guard is formed", and the 98th Army Band, under the direction of CWO Wood, began the retreat while all present remained at parade rest until the last notes had echoed through the courtyard. Then the stirring strains of the "Star Spangled Banner" rang through the castle grounds as all came to present arms. After the anthem, the Castle Guard stood at ease for a short address from the Commanding General.
With pride in his voice, General Dabney congratulated the men for their past performance, and explained the reasons for the disbanding of the guard. "The change of system", said the general, "represents no dissatisfaction with the job that you have done. Your Regimental Commander, Colonel Epson, wanted his troops together for the next few months of training ... I appreciate the splendid job you have done here - your appearance and the way you have conducted yourselves as soldiers ... I wish the best of luck to a fine group of soldiers and good upstanding citizens of the country. You are the finest men it has been my privilege to work with."
Returning to his position in front of the castle arch, General Dabney and Lieutenant Garred stood side by side as the Castle Guard passed in final review. The two reliefs, followed by the 98th Army Band, marched past their Commanding General and out of the immediate castle grounds.
The men of the Castle Guard will now return to their respective units in the Regiment, which for six years has been sending its sharpest soldiers to the castle to safeguard the personnel and documents of the TRUST headquarters.The Blue Devil, Vol. 10, no. 4. Saturday, 7 August 1954. p. 1.
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