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Sentinel at Tomb of Unknown Soldier Accidentally Gets Stabbed, But Won't Stop Doing His Duty

The Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at Arlington National Cemetery is one of the nation’s most solemn monuments. The tomb is dedicated to service members of the U.S. Armed Forces who have died defending the country, but whose remains have not been identified. The tomb is guarded by Sentinels, known as the Old Guard, for 24 hours per day, seven days per week. It doesn't matter if there is a blizzard, a tornado or hurricane; the Sentinels never stop their duty.

Becoming a member of the Old Guard is a prestigious position, and it's not an easy one to get. Fewer than 10 percent of soldiers who apply for the position will get it. Members of the Old Guard are put through an intense training period, as the Sentinel’s job is highly ceremonial and complex. They have to learn everything from steps, cadence, bearing and handling of weapons with unthinkable precision. Sentinels rarely make mistakes and stop for nothing.

Sentinel uniforms must be absolutely impeccable and can take hours to properly care for and prepare. Even among the members of the military, few are as disciplined as one needs to be in order to be considered for the honor of the Old Guard.

One Sentinel proved just how dedicated and deserving he is of the position when he was stabbed on duty. A knife went right through his foot in the middle of the ceremony, but he didn't miss a beat. A visitor caught the entire incident on video.

The unnamed Sentinel was performing the Changing of the Guards ceremony with a relief Commander. During the white-glove weapon inspection, the Commander made a rare blunder-- he dropped the bayonet. Unfortunately, the rifle went straight down, and the pointy knife on the end of the firearm went into the guard's foot.

A momentary flash of agony went across the guard's face, but within a split second, he had regained his composure. For many of us, such an accident would be unthinkable, but this guard hardly even flinched.

The Commander got a grip on the weapon again, and without hesitation, the two completed the ceremony as if nothing had happened. Not a single step was rushed, not another movement was out of place for either of the soldiers. The two continued with their duty, flawlessly, with perfect timing.

If you blinked when the bayonet was dropped and didn’t catch the split-second grimace on the face of the soldier who was stabbed, you might never have realized that anything was amiss at all. The only clue after the incident was over was the hole on top of the guard’s boot that was pooling with blood.

Walking must have been agony for the Sentinel after the injury, but he did his duty just as he vows in the 'The Sentinel's Creed'.

"My dedication to this sacred duty is total and whole-hearted," the creed reads. "In the responsibility bestowed on me never will I falter. And with dignity and perseverance my standard will remain perfection."

Source: Sharebly, Business Insider
Photo: YouTube

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