Respect of Formations

Gentlemen, I have a good line of discussion. We have all heard "hey, don't walk in front of my formation"; but where is this referenced? I have searched the D&C book to some length, as well as contacting a Drill Sergeant friend of mine at Leonard Wood. The most common answer is "you just don't". I hate that answer. The other popular answer is, "that only applies to the formation having a guidon posted". That answer is not much better becuase again there is no reference. Any one have some referance points or a point of order? Thanks guys SFC Kennedy, Fort Benning, GA
Original Post
Desert Rat,


I hate to bust your bubble, but that is just "anothert one of those things". For example, nowhere in the old FM22-5 did it state that a soldier had to stand at parade rest when addressing a noncomissioned officer, but we did it,....didn't we? And if you failed to when speaking to , let's say the BN CSM or the unit 1SG, you would wish you had. I'm sure you never questioned the CSM or the 1SG about why you had to do it because it didn't appear in a regulation somewhere. Now, since the FM 22-5 has been upated and changed to FM 3-21.5, that specific guidance atually appears in the NOTE just under the passage that describes how to stand at the position of parade rest. Probably thanks to soldiers like you who feel the need to see everything in black and white.

As far as the formation deal, it is just a common courtesy. It is not referenced in any regulation. But, if you continue to "challenge" this by walking in front of your peers formations, you will learn about a few more unwritten rules that exist in the Army and the NCO Corps.

" I am an expert, and I am a PROFESSIONAL"

and oh by the way, "GENTLEMAN"are not the only people who frequent this site. There ARE females who are professional noncommissioned officers as well.

DS2000
On the same note: I was taught in Basic to go to Parade Rest when a formation is marching by. I stopped doing it long ago, because I will not be able to make it to my office, if I have to stop every 2 minutes. No one says anything, but I do get dirty looks once in a while. So, is it another "informal rule" or is it just something for trainees only?
[quote:b23e06a23c="Bradmeister"]if the formation has a guidon in front of it, I would stop and salute. Remember: you're saluting the guidon, not the person in charge of the formation.

aahhh..... the good ole days of road guard on Friday morning at Ft Hood...[/quote:b23e06a23c]
I've never heard of that one. :?
Judge - evidentally you never had a 1SG or CSM jump out of formation or from behind the formation to jump in your behind for not saluting. Also, when you're calling cadence during a PT run and a CO sized element or larger is passing you, don't you salute the the head of the formation?

As for walking in front of formation. It's just common courtesy. Would you walk in front of a formation that had a Bn or Bde Cdr addressing them? I doubt it. It's just one of those unspoken rules that everyone follows.
[quote:fa552b605f="BigDaddyIce"]Judge - evidentally you never had a 1SG or CSM jump out of formation or from behind the formation to jump in your behind for not saluting. Also, when you're calling cadence during a PT run and a CO sized element or larger is passing you, don't you salute the the head of the formation?[/quote:fa552b605f]
In the past two and half years no one has [b:fa552b605f]ever[/b:fa552b605f] made me salute a formation or a guidon. I don't even remember it being taught in basic.
Ok, saluting a guidon is plain wrong, it's not a flag, just a symbol of identification. I've never been told to do that (been in the Army for 4 and a half years now). Not to walk in front of formation - that's obvious for anyone with a sense of survival, to get out of the way for marching formation, to salute someone when you are in charge of formation - ditto, but to go to parade rest for formation, when you are walking on your own? It will take all day on normal base to get from point A to point B.
Standing at parade rest while a formation marches by is a courtesy usually only observed on training installations by trainees. The troopie goes to parade rest, and as soon as the DS in charge of the formation observes THEM observing this courtesy, he/ she instructs them to "Carry on soldier!"

It is not practiced at most non-TRADOC related installations nor by permanent party personnel.


When the company guidon is being carried in the formation, thus assisting those of us outside of a unit to recognize it as a unit /company or higher formation, you only salute when the commander or his or her commissioned representative is leading the formation. Therefore, the guidon is not saluted, the commander is.

DS2000
[quote:3c64841e95="RedKat"]I've never been told to do that (been in the Army for 4 and a half years now).[/quote:3c64841e95]

I've been in the Army 10 and a half years, and I've always been told to do that.

One thing everyone needs to remember is that just because you haven't experienced it, does not mean that everyone else is talking out the side of their neck. I'm sure there are things in my 10 years you have never experienced, just as I'm sure there are things in your 4 years that I have never experienced.

Don't imply that people are making up stories, just because you have a different experience with the same subject. This goes for EVERYBODY.
That's why I've been asking about it. Army has a lot of rules that are not written, it's just something that you do, because that's the way it's done or because someone with more stripes told you to do so.

No implementation was intended, just seeking the truth.
It usually comes up, when someone has to go all the way around. For example - my battery forms up by the mail room, and there is no way not to walk through or even around. Soldiers from different units, that have to get in there, have to stand by till we finish up, but, my god, these damn civilians.. they just walk through. I swear, one day they will push BC out of the way.
[quote:b3c55cd325="RedKat"]That's why I've been asking about it. Army has a lot of rules that are not written, it's just something that you do, because that's the way it's done or because someone with more stripes told you to do so.

No implementation was intended, just seeking the truth.[/quote:b3c55cd325]
Uh... yeah... what he said.

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