As most people know, the military has strict rules and guidelines for their regulations that they live and die by, and this is especially true with their ceremonies. Before you attend a military funeral, you will need to know the rules of engagement so that you won’t go against their sacred and fundamental traditions. So what are the expectations while attending a military funeral? Here is a summary to get you up to speed.
Remain Standing During the Ceremony
As odd as it may sound, everyone must remain standing during a military funeral ceremony procession. Once all the ceremonial traditions take place, everyone may sit for the eulogy performed by a military chaplain. The fallen veteran’s family sits at the front of the congregation as tradition permits.
All Veterans Must Attend in Dress Uniform
Whether they have served or are currently serving, veterans should always attend a military funeral ceremony in dress uniform per traditional standards. This has always been how the military has carried out its traditions to honor the fallen and their military brothers and sisters who have served and are serving now.
Always Salute the Hearse or Flag As It Passes
Out of respect, active duty and retired military veterans should always salute the casket when it moves. In the event of a cremation, a veteran should carry a flag behind one carrying the urn, and when the flag passes, you should salute.
Civilians Should Remove Headwear and Dress Smartly
While there’s no formal dress requirement for civilians, they must still dress formally and smartly as a part of funeral etiquette rules. The ideal dress would be all-black, but you can vary that if the dress is tasteful and appropriate for a funeral procession. What civilians should remember is that when the casket or the flag passes, they should remove all headwear and hold it over their hearts.
We have listed an overview of what the expectations are while attending a military funeral. Now, you will know what to do if you ever find yourself engaged in one of these ceremonies.