Big Walnut area folks who attended Sunbury’s Independence Day Parade may remember the young soldier carrying the U.S. Flag in the parade’s color guard. That was Private Jack Schnurr, next to his grandfather Gene Fuller, the American Legion Post 457 Adjutant carrying the post flag.
Private Schnurr should be no stranger to Big Walnut sports fans. He’s a 2015 Big Walnut High School graduate who was captain of the wrestling team. He completed US Army Basic Training and Advanced Infantry Training at Fort Benning, Georgia, in April of this year and has been assigned to the 3rd Infantry Battalion in Washington, D.C.
The 3rd Infantry is better known as The Old Guard and is the oldest active duty infantry unit in the Army, serving our nation since 1784. The Old Guard is the Army’s official ceremonial unit and escort to the president, and it also provides security for Washington, D.C. in time of emergency or civil disturbance.
Fifty campaign streamers attest to the 3rd Infantry’s long history of service, which spans from the Battle of Fallen Timbers to World War II and Vietnam.
Since World War II, the Old Guard has served as the official Army Honor Guard and escort to the President. In that capacity, 3rd Infantry soldiers are responsible for conducting military ceremonies at the White House, the Pentagon, national memorials and elsewhere in the nation’s capital.
The Old Guard is best known for maintaining a 24-hour vigil at the Tomb of the Unknowns and providing funeral escorts at Arlington National Cemetery.
The Old Guard Soldiers must meet special criteria to become part of the elite group. Only two members of Jack’s unit qualified for this duty.
Private Jack Schnurr is the son of Jenny and Tom Schnurr and grandson of Joan and Gene Fuller of Sunbury.
At his Fort Benning graduation ceremony Jack’s grandfather, a Vietnam Era Army soldier, was honored to pin the Blue Infantry Cord on his grandson at the Turning Blue Ceremony.