The Joint Task Force – National Capital Region announces military participation for the 57th Presidential Inaugural Parade following President-elect Barack Obama’s second swearing-in ceremony and inaugural address scheduled for Jan. 21, 2013.
The Presidential Inaugural Committee officially announced several selections of Inaugural Parade participants, including military organizations, Dec. 18, 2012. Military support is designed to provide appropriate honors to the commander in chief, recognize civilian control of the military and celebrate democracy.
Traditionally, military units from each of the five branches have marched in the Presidential escort and in the Inaugural Parade. More than 2,100 military personnel will be marching in the parade, with a total of about 5,000 troops supporting the inauguration.
Additionally, for the current inauguration, 2,807 groups applied to march in the parade. All applications were collected and organized by Joint Task Force – National Capital Region, or JTF-NCR, and 317 were submitted to the PIC, which is appointed by the President-elect. These applications were reviewed by the PIC with assistance of the JTF-NCR, including members of several military bands, musical acts and drill teams.
“The Inauguration Day parade is the largest, most complicated event that takes place in the nation’s capital, which requires a multitude of mission partners to work together,” said Maj. Gen. Michael S. Linnington, JTF- NCR’s commanding general. “The role of the military in this event is one of support. We are here to support the Presidential Inauguration Committee, Joint Congressional Committee on Inaugural Ceremonies, and the other civilian agencies.”
Service members involved in the 2013 Presidential Inauguration represent an integrated Total Force — Soldiers, Marines, Sailors, Airmen, and Coast Guard members — proudly serving their country at home and around the world. This support comprises musical units, marching bands, color guards, salute batteries and honor cordons, which render appropriate ceremonial honors to the commander in chief.
Below is the list of military organizations selected to participate in inaugural activities on Jan. 21, 2013:
– Military support to the Presidential Escort;
– JTF-NCR senior service representatives led by Maj. Gen. Michael S. Linnington;
– Joint Staff led by Army Col. James C. Markert, commander 3rd U.S. Infantry (The Old Guard) Regiment;
– The United States Army Band (Pershing’s Own), led by Drum Major, Master Sgt. Scott Little;
– 3rd U.S. Infantry Regiment (The Old Guard);
– U.S. Marine Corps. Ceremonial Guard Company, Marine Barracks Washington, D.C.;
– Armed Forces Color Guard;
– U.S. Navy Ceremonial Guard;
– U.S. Air Force Honor Guard;
– U.S. Coast Guard Honor Guard;
– The Old Guard Fife and Drum Corps led by Drum Major Master Sgt. William White; and
– The Commander and Chief’s Guard.
The Presidential Escort is often viewed by the general public as part of the Inaugural Parade. However, the Presidential Escort is actually a smaller, distinct procession that, in addition to the President and Vice President, includes the U.S. Army Band, Commander in Chief’s Guard, Old Guard Fife and Drum Corps, Honor Platoons for each of the armed services, and the Armed Forces Color Guard.
There are five distinct parade divisions and each division is comprised of various elements of the five armed services.
– U.S. Army Staff comprising academy, active, guard and reserve members;
– The U.S. Army Field Band;
– The U.S. Military Academy Marching Company, West Point, N.Y.;
– The U.S. Army Marching Company, 3rd U.S. Infantry;
– The U.S. Army Color Guard, 3rd U.S. Infantry;
– The U.S. Army National Guard, D.C. National Guard;
– The U.S. Army Reserve, 200th Military Police Command, Fort Meade, Md.; and
– The 54th Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry Regiment, Hanscom Air Force Base, Mass.
– U.S. Marine Corps Staff comprising active and reserve members;
– The U.S. Marine Band (The President’s Own);
– The U.S. Marine Corps Marching Company, Ceremonial Guard Company;
– The U.S. Marine Corps Color Guard; and
– The U.S. Marine Corps Reserve Marching Company.
– U.S. Navy Staff comprising academy, active, guard and reserve members;
– The U.S. Navy Band;
– The U.S. Naval Academy, Annapolis, Md.;
– The U.S. Navy Ceremonial Guard;
– The U.S. Navy Color Guard; and
– The U.S. Navy Reserve.
– U.S. Air Force Staff comprising academy, active, guard and reserve members;
– The U.S. Air Force Band;
– The U.S. Air Force Academy, Colorado Springs, Colo.;
– The U.S. Air Force Honor Guard;
– The U.S. Air Force Color Guard;
– The U.S. Air National Guard, 113th Wing, D.C Air National Guard; and
– The U.S. Air Force Reserve, 459th Air Refueling Wing.
– U.S. Coast Guard Staff comprising academy, active and reserve members;
– The U.S. Coast Guard Band;
– The U.S. Coast Guard Academy, New London, Conn.;
– The U.S. Coast Guard Honor Guard;
– The U.S. Coast Guard Color Guard;
– The U.S. Coast Guard Reserve;
– The U.S. Merchant Marine Academy Staff Element;
– The U.S. Merchant Marine Academy Band;
– The U.S. Merchant Marine Academy Color Guard; and
– The U.S. Merchant Marine Academy.
In addition, the Presidential Inauguration Committee has selected the following military elements as representatives of their home states: Commanding General’s Mounted Color Guard, Fort Riley, Kan., in historic cavalry uniforms, and the 81st Reserve Support Command Wildcats Color Guard, Fort Jackson, S.C., in historic World War I era uniforms.
Military involvement in the Presidential Inauguration is a centuries-old tradition. The U.S. military has participated in this important American tradition since April 30, 1789, when members of the U.S. Army, local militia units and Revolutionary War veterans escorted President George Washington to his first inauguration ceremony at Federal Hall in New York City.