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Catalog Number 2013.58.7
Object Name Diary
Accession number 2013.58
Description From the personal diary kept by Corporal Thomas R. Shook, December 26, 1918-April 22, 1919

Went to pasture for usual close order drill; Had a review of the four Co's billeted in this area; No drill now from Christmas day until after New Year's Day; Went to Ballou after dinner with Pew, Orr and Joe; Late for supper as not much to eat; Ballou a nice town; 30th Division H.Q located there; Kept warm in beds; Sealed orders were in and Co. was told to fall out with light pack, helmet and gas mask; Marched to chateaux drive-inspected by a Divisional Staff Major; Told to fall out with equipment; Inspected by Sgt. Col. Hartigan; No drill; Corral in a bad condition; Regular inspection; Inspections; Checked on shortages of equipment and were issued Red Cross socks, combs, and tooth brushes; Went to chateaux to try and find Pew's knife; Got some paper from the Y and went to cafe; Seldom receive any mail; Went to village church in the morning while Co. were at service; Had dinner at cafe; Bought six francs worth of beef, steak, and sausage, French fried potatoes, coffee and bread; Wrote a few letters and went to bed early; Chaplain at Y said we are going home soon; Turned out for field inspection this morning; Carried pack containing shelter; Reviews; Part of 30th Division artillery has returned to the States; Today the 59th Brigade review before Major General Tiason; Left for parade ground; Carried full field equipment; Passed in review first then displayed our equipment for inspection by General; Equipment was best in brigade; All men must now wear "Old Hickory" insignia; Most men now wear their service stripes and wound stripes

January 1, 1919: New Year's Day

Rode "Billy" when Reeves and I went to see about chicken for dinner; Unable to buy one so Price bought beef-steak and we went to cafe where we had dinner prepared; Together all day with Price, Orr, Reeves, Pew and Joe; Had a very good dinner; Filled up good today; Rolling packs for inspections; Transport boys worked on harness until after "Taps"; Getting everything ready for inspection; Made a good impression at inspection; Color's carried in parade the second time since being in France; Fell in for usual drill; Sgt.Wilkinson in charge of the Co.; Only drilled a short time; Co. was judged excellent; All leaves cancelled-soon to start for home; Sgt.Wilkinson explained military points; All Private First Class reduced tomorrow; Regular Saturday morning inspection; Turned in all blankets; Each man turned in extra equipment; Started cleaning machine guns and oiling them before noon and after dinner began packing for shipment; No church formation so several went to the village church; Private First Class reduced but retain privileges; Sgt.Wilkinson held school in afternoon for benefit of men trying for Class A; Took pictures; Sgt.Wilson took charge of the Co. and took us to pasture for drill; Hikes; At mess formation an order was read calling for men with experience in police work, insurance or embalmers-no one responded; Rolled packs after dinner; Ground in an awful condition for drill; Late getting back to billets

January 7, 1919: Birthday; Rather than get a good paddling with the hair brush, gave boys supper

Morning inspection; Called out for drill but had to check up on equipment again; Had no drill in morning

January 8, 1919: After dismissal, Sgt.Baily read an order to the Co. announcing the death of ex-president Roosevelt; Co. was supposed to be off in respect of the dead but order came in late

Transport men having trouble with their feet due to so much mud; Dr. has forbidden officers to drill the men any more in the pasture as so many are getting such bad feet; Mud is awful; Mud and water comes to surface of the ground; Squad drill; In afternoon Co. went to pasture and went through drill and guard mount; Some fellows continue to raise too much racket after "Taps"; Awakened by sound of bugler's sounding of "Pay Day"; No silver came in-had to pair off to get full pay; Names corporals transferred to Co.F; No drill in forenoon; In afternoon drill; Regular Saturday morning inspection; Called outside for inspection; First part of Co. went for bath; Took an entire change of clean clothes; Clothes, blankets and overcoats deloused; Some men caused trouble by drunkenness; Went to Y for afternoon-some of the best field meet events pulled off; M.G Co. had best tug of war team; Bothered by more drunks last night; Sgt.Wilkinson read "The Riot Act" to us this morning in regards to drunks; Second platoon and some corral detail went for a bath and delousing this morning; Had to wait an hour at bathhouse before our turn; Unable to get a bath today; Went to cafe; Several men signed up as M.Ps; Regular drill; Pair of transport went to Le Mans today; Drill; Hike; Mail from home; Squad and platoon drill; Captain Ramer made an address to Co. in regards to the "Society of Wolves"; Fellows in the tug of war team went to town square for practice; Gave a short concert in village after retreat; Getting breakfast immediately after formations; Men who had not received baths or been deloused fell in with clean clothes and went to bathhouse; Blankets and overcoats put in delousing machine; Turned loose after bath and could go back to Co.; NGOs laid out equipment as a model for men of the squad; Spent greater part of time in athletic events; Rechecking equipment again today; First hour of afternoon taken up by Sgt. Wilkinson telling us the history of our Co. from the day it was organized; Co. history now being compiled; Transport expected to be turned in tomorrow-turning in everything that is surplus; Issued a few small articles; Called for an early start for field meet held at St. Jamme; Transport not turned in; Boys who were in the tug of war and running events rode over in regimental transport; Band furnished the music and had a good time; Tug of war team out pulled the other team; Co.A team best in the division; Our team lost partly to the advantage the Co.A team had in digging foot holds; Regular Saturday morning inspection; Passed in review in single file before a village woman; Passes to Le Mans granted; Mess formation now compulsory; Drill during the afternoon; Went after washing-was nice and clean; Bought liver sausage; Fine dinner for the six of us; Joe secured his waist belt here; Talked to some 27th Division boys-they believe they are to sail for the States; Stopped at Cross-Roads cafe and rested; Billet in bad condition; Co. formed at 8:15 and was marched to chateaux-each man examined for "cooties"; Usual two hour hike in the afternoon

January 20, 1919: Not feeling very well-some fellows seem to have bad cases of the "Grippe" or the Flu

January 21, 1919: Name placed on sick book first time since coming "over here"; Dr. gave pills and marked quarters; Came back to billet, went to bed, and stayed there all day; Did not eat any dinner-got away with good supper; Many boys now sick; Two went to the hospital this morning

Corral is in awful condition; So many of the men are sick; First Sgt. called for men from the Co. to volunteer to work in there a few days; Did not sleep much; Reported to Dr. and marked for duty; Drilled half an hour but felt so bad platoon Sgt. excused me; "Articles of War" read to the Co. in the forenoon; No drill in the afternoon; Do not feel very well yet; Several more of the men are sick-two more went to hospital this morning; Co. left on a manuever going over near Ballou; Wore overcoats, steel helmets, gas masks at alert and carried light packs; Canteens full of water were carried; Back at billets at 12:30-dinner shortly afterward; NGOs were called to the orderly room after dinner; Explained to us the order about a chance to secure a commission in the Officer's Reserves Corps-no one gave in their name; Fire in billet room for the first time this afternoon; Went to pasture for drill; Field in good condition; Took a two hour hike in the afternoon; Drawing five days rations at a time; Some of the 60th Brigade turned in their transport today; Not much of an inspection as Co. was taking a bath; Went to bathhouse-water was fine but poor place for dressing; Sitting around the fire most of the time; Sick men seem to be getting better-one man went to the hospital this morning; Some men also came back to Co. from hospital; Lists names of MPs; Up an hour later this morning; Snowed for awhile after breakfast-did not stop us fellows from going to the Cross-Roads cafe for dinner; Secured leather for belts; Ate so much yesterday could not sleep good; 27th boys we talked to yesterday were fine fellows and we had a fine time together; Roads so slippery had a hard work standing up in drill work; Usual squad and platoon drill in the forenoon; Some 105th put transport horses in our corral; Have harness packed in limbers and expect to have them taken to Le Mans by truck; Long hike in afternoon; Most equipment in packs-roads sloppy; A few more men have signed up to remain over here for work

January 27, 1919: Father's birthday

Road fine to drill on and cold enough to make work snappy; Officers were all away during the forenoon; Co. in charge of Sgt. Hendricks; Usual drill; Went to the billets and platoon sergeants had charge of their platoons in signing the clothing slips; Had an hour of semaphore work; Fire makes a good place to set beside each night and talk over each other's experiences; Doughnuts issued by Red Cross; Cold night but manage to keep warm while in bed; Usual forenoon drill; Sgt.Wilkinson working on the Co. portion of the Division history; In the afternoon the Co. took a bath, going to the village a platoon at a time; After taking bath, each platoon marched back to billets-soiled clothing put away and then marched back to the village square to take in the athletic events; Talk of going home by the 15th of next month seems favorable; Co. inspection this forenoon; Each man taking all his equipment and going to the lot where the kitchen is located; Put in requisition for new or un-serviceable equipment; In the afternoon the Co. took the usual afternoon two hour hike; Snow has fallen occasionally but has not been very cold at any time; Fire in billet is fine these cold evenings; Got up at 5:45 this morning and had breakfast at 6:00; Was so dark that several of the men carried lanterns or candles for light; Co. left with light pack gas mask and wearing steel helmets at 7:30 for regimental manuever; Got back to billets at 1:30 having marched something over twenty kilos and only stopping a few times; Marked steel hats and turned them into the supply room to be marked with divisional insignia; Issued candy at mess time tonight; No Saturday morning inspection this morning as we went to the chateaux for cootie examination; Co. was formed before noon; Sgt.Baily and another sergeant made farewell talk to us before transfer to S.O.S; Indoors most of the afternoon except when we played volley ball at the Co. H.Q billet; Price's belt finished this evening; Ice froze hard enough on the pools to hold the French kids up while skating; Went to St. Jamme in the morning taking Pew's kodak and getting a picture of "Au Marie" statue up in the park; Had dinner in a small cafe near the bathhouse; Got back to Co.street about 3pm; No mail for over a week; All men who have cooties were sent to the de-louser early in the morning; Information came in that we were to leave for forwarding camp; Do not place much confidence in the news; Sgt.Phillips had charge of Co. for a hike of one hour; Came back to billets and turned in surplus equipment; Old Hickory insignia painted on our steel helmets; Co. and transport marched to the chateaux for cootie inspection; Cooties were found on one man who took his blankets and clothing to the delouser; Back to billets at 9:30 and Co. in charge of Sgt.Hendricks went for an hour hike; Back at 10:45 and spent thirty minutes in foot rubbing; Transport boys getting limbers and transport equipment ready to be turned in; Took a hike in the afternoon of one hour going to the Cross-Roads cafe; Fell out and Sgt.Wilkinson told us some of the plans made to muster us out; Fell out at usual drill hour; Co. and transport men told to roll packs and turn in all surplus equipment; Many articles turned up that had been lost and were all turned in; Sgt.Wilkinson read divisional and Co. history; Fell out for drill; Sgt.Phillips gave orders to go to billets and work on feet for thirty minutes to get in shape for hike Friday; One and half francs dedicated for damaged billets; Formation at usual hour; First Sergeant gave orders to begin cleaning up our billets; No leave during the day; Expect a few fatigue jobs; Had charge of two squads in digging a large refuge hole; Some boys going to extremes today and hike will be hard on them; Bugler sounded off this morning-adding a few extra notes of march; Breakfast call immediately; Two blankets and overcoats carried by trails for all companies; Stopped for dinner outside Le Mans; Going on to American forwarding camps; Reached camp going into one story barracks; Filled bed sacks and prepared beds before supper; Placed equipment out on bunks for inspection; Sgt.Phillips inspected same checked up on all shortages and unserviceable stuff; Examined men for cooties; Good dinner; Fell in formation and marched-examined closely for cooties; Received new U.S issue underwear and socks; Men so sick last night better this evening; Fixed bed and slept nice; Supposed to spend review hours each day while in this camp-drill and fatigue officers have let down to three hours; Spent forenoon in foot rubbing; Men who put in for transfer as motor workers were taken out today-most sorry to leave since we have started west-ward; Had squad drill and platoon drill-went indoors and placed all our equipment on cots for inspection to get new articles;Equipment out on cots for inspection; Line Co.'s are doing guard duty

February 10, 1919: Divisional artillery is quarantined in this camp with contagious disease

Orders were for each man to sleep under his own blankets and head to feet; Slept warm but Pew was cold; My squad was on detail in dining hall cleaning; Co. placed their entire equipment out for inspection by camp inspector; Men do not try to drill; Told if we passed inspection we will move out; Had exercises then returned to billets for thirty minute foot rubbing; Rumors that there will be more war-that we may go to Russia or anywhere but the States; Immediately after dinner Co. was all broken up again; Camp Jackson and Camp Sevier men going in first platoon-Camp Funston in second platoon; Talk now of entire division returning at one time; NGOs and men going to Le Mans on pass-have nothing to do all day; Sixty men on detail; Bought some souvenir knives and match boxes-managed to pass through guard line and go to large Y hut; Dining room detail for the day; Co. received issue of smoking and chewing tobacco; Dining room detail; Spent thirty minutes in foot rubbing; All men except NGOs were issued overalls and blouses for fatigue work; Each man sleeps under own blanket; Saturday morning inspection; Co. was given an examination after dinner for cooties; Pvt. Morgan who transferred to truck driver's Co. came over to visit in the evening; Pew and Joe went to church in the morning

February 16, 1919: First fight since being in the Co. broke out between two boys over a card game-one had too much liquor

No work today; Small Y was opened in a tent for the regiment-doing a rushing business; Detail work in dining room; Men on extra duty given drill during afternoon with packs; Ten men each day continue to go to Le Mans; Entire Division is now in camp; Do not know when any of the Division leaves but believe our regiment will be the first to go as we were first to come into camp; Nothing to do during forenoon; Do not get many papers to read; Formation for all men in Co. at one o'clock; Captain made a short talk to us regarding the demonstration caused in Le Mans by soldiers who wanted to return to the States soon; 120th Infantry had their field inspection by S.O.S. inspection today; Co. formation for all men and officers; Marched outside block to the camp inspection barracks-all men given examination; Fell out for Co. bath at 2:00; Went to delousing plant where given a good bath and furnished soap and towels; Believe we will be leaving this camp this week; Could not sleep during the night; Put in names for a pass to Le Mans; Walked all the way in; Walked over city visiting cathedrals, railroads; Had a good supper at a cafe on the right of the square; On forming out of town Pew and I became separated from Joe and Price; Another cootie inspection; Each corporal issued three helmets to have for squad wash basins; One boy who went to delousing plant after inspection placed in quarantine for two days; Camp Funston boys of this regiment stand retreat in a Co. by themselves under command of Captain Underwood who will have charge of us until we are mustered out of service; No inspection this morning; Field kitchens are now used to heat water for washing; Still continue to make good use of beds for card parties; Camp Funston men must all present for retreat; Joe and Pew went to church and were able to find out where the 114th boys are located; No more passes granted to leave camp; Not getting very much to eat in dining room; Mistake made in drawing rations; Chaplain told men we were going home; Better meals now we have changed mess halls; Orders to fall out for another field inspection; Inspected by Captain and passed fairly well; Captain Underwood told us not to build up great hopes on leaving Wednesday; Line Cos drilled with raincoats and helmets; Nothing to do except detail work in the dining room; Get better chow in present mess hall but other Cos try to get ahead; Sgt. Phillips came over and made some of the Line Cos fall out so we could go in; Know now that artillery brigade has never had any contagious disease; Officers telling us so we would not try to break through picket fence; Rolled out with no better prospects of leaving today than we had a week ago; Understand now that the 27th Division is on the water; New York Herald paper gave a list of Divisions returning to States in March, April, May and June; Detail work for two squads today; One in dining hall, one after rations; Need to be more careful about sleeping head and foot; Officer of the Day has been making inspection after "Taps"; Changed to head and foot method of sleeping again; At foot of bunk-put raincoat up by window to keep cold wind out; Line Cos are having baseball games each afternoon; Those not on detail off for rest of the day; Co. has a volley ball to play with for exercise; Joe's squad on detail in mess hall; After March 1st, afternoon drill will be dropped; No work except detail work; Several Co. boys went to large movie show in the Y in the evening; Pictures were very good-first movie since leaving Camp Mills last May; Regular Saturday morning inspection; One squad detailed for mess work-three squads to place sand in mess hall; Two boys from 89th Division visiting today; They have told us of their fighting; Sgt.Phillips left to attend school at a university opened for American soldiers; Secured pictures of the three officers before Sgt.Phillips left; Went to movies with South-show was bum; Band plays each morning just after buglers blown first call; Winding up on "Pay Day"; All men not on dining room detail went in a detail under Wilkinson to camp headquarters; Watched ball game played by two officers; Spent a few minutes in the Y in the evening then walked about camp; Clocks set an hour ahead on March 1st so we roll out while it is dark; Boys who missed formation yesterday morning are on mess hall detail; Line Cos turning in extra pairs of shoes-we will be doing the same; Went to movie with South; Could hardly breathe-almost crushed on way out; Cpl. O'Neil's squad in the dining hall today; Received weekly bath this morning; Turned in extra shoes this afternoon; Artillery units leaving this camp today-expecting sure to leave on Sunday; Captain told us of the "Old Hickory" 30th Division that has been formed; Started for drill at 8:30 this morning-first drill for weeks; Had Co. squad drill and platoon drill; Several boys played indoor baseball in the afternoon; Went to the Y in the evening; Passes granted to Le Mans; Co. with exceptions of a squad in the mess hall were put on detail building streets; 105th Eng. have been coming in camp the past two days; Detailed for road work; Passes granted to Le Mans; Reserve rations carried to the billet in evening; Each man issued hard bread and roast beef as a reserve ration-good for two days and will not be touched until we board the train; No work in the morning-squad detail; Detachment formed for pay shortly after dinner; Captain Underwood acted as pay master; Camp Sherman detachment paid about the same time; Could get no rest; Rolled out in a slight rain and not cold enough for overcoats; No Saturday morning inspection held in any of the Co's regiment; Inspected for cooties; Given a bath-water contained strong mixture of kerosene; Took a detail of two men and went to Red Cross tent-received cans of jam for the Funston detachment; Left barracks after giving the place a good policing; Left packs in car and marched to Y where we were served hot chocolate and cookies; Left camp but moved very slowly; Had beefsteak, gravy and coffee; Rained most of the day; Could not get any sleep-men going back and forth; Arrived in Camp # 2 in Barrack 23; Given physical exam; Passed through building very rapidly; Only one man caught with cooties; Took him to be deloused; Went back to camp and came back with the detachment; First three squads of our detachment are in with M.G Co; Much better camp than # 2; Given good meals and fed in short time; Rolled out at 6:00 this morning; Nothing to do but hunt up Camp Pike-Gordon men added to our detachment; Ran around the camp going through the Y huts and Salvation Army during the forenoon; Went to movies at Y and from there went into line for warm chocolate and cakes; Ate doughnuts and coffee; Went to a show; M.G Co. sent one squad out for pack inspection and they passed; Waited with Pew all forenoon in the barber shop then failed to get any work done; Went back to shop after dinner and had hair cut; Turned in reserve rations, tent pole and pins and had gloves and dog tags inspected; Several camp detachments listed to sail tomorrow; Had French money exchanged for US today; Acting as supply sergeant-have issued gloves, tape for dog tags and cap; Some fellows went to the Y and took in a good reel movie show; Co. formed and divided into three platoons in the afternoon; Detachment took a bath getting new underclothes; Took in the 364th Inf. show last night; Scheduled to load on 14th or 15th on ship-bound for Charlestown; Generally good meals in this camp; Trying to get more clothing for the men; Drill early in the morning; Detachment went to #2 camp for final physical exam before leaving this camp; Could not leave barrack; M.G Co. left camp to load on the boat; Most men have rolled lower portion of packs; Met Lt. Eubank brought him to our barrack; Rolled out and went to parade ground-waited until after 8am before officers came; Boarded ship at 10am cleared off; Have three bands on board ship's band; Mercury was a former German ship; Lists statistics of ship; No supper last night; Pew has a friend in ship's band; Feeling light headed; No mess; Went to movie show; Sea very calm; Hard to keep anything sweet on stomach; Go to movies most every night; Sail boat sighted today; Turned in names to Red Cross to have telegrams sent home; Service held on deck for troops officer's mess room; Pew took picture while I was lying on deck; All troops on board had clothing inspection today; All men not on detail must be out of hold; Good dinner

March 28,1919: Anchored in harbor; Boarded train for Camp Jackson

Many of the 113th F.A boys are now discharged; Detachment had group picture taken this morning; Guard placed to keep us but did not do much good-sun burned bad; Funny sight of boys greeting home folks-all are in a great hurry to get home; All busy this morning getting ready for parade; Placed in charge of detail helping haul cootie blankets to delousing plant; Reported to Captain Underwood who dismissed us to go to parade M.G boys all discharged in the morning so they did not parade; Most boys wearing overcoats; In charge of quarters today; Generally not much of an inspection made by officers; Taken to laundry-pressed coats; Had sleeves lengthened in evening; Sent to delousing plant at 11:30pm; Several slipped away and came back to billet; Went with Pew and Price to buy shoes but the A.E.F boys tore things up so much they would sell any today; Sell good shoes; No leave granted to men during the afternoon as we may leave anytime; Joe in charge of quarters today; Thirty seven men from detachment were transferred to the 156th Depot Brigade to be discharged; Went to a good movie show late in the evening; Ole and Joe were taking a bath and we fellows helped them in a way they didn't like; Pew came and we made beds together; 50 men put to work in Q.M warehouse immediately after breakfast; Acted as mess sergeant; Barbeque dance; In charge of quarters today; Most all the detachments to other camps leave today and tomorrow; No one came to inspect today; Collected special mess fund and spent part of it on 10 gallon ice cream and cake; 60th Brigade 30th Division paraded in Columbia today and all men not on duty given leave to go; No cake last night but ice cream was fine; Travel very slowly; Have over 486 men going to Camp Dodge aboard; Country we have passed through has been very poor; Do not serve very good eats-have to buy to keep from getting hungry; Good night's rest with exception of disturbance about 12pm; Rolled out while in Atlanta, GA; Called out by a 1st for not jumping at his commands fast enough to suit his taste; One of the boy's furnished music for a dance on the walks by the train; Red Cross ladies dancing with the officers and boys; Marched to Y-had ice cream and pie; Crossed river; Country very nice compared with what we have been traveling through; Nice 90 miles this side of St. Louis; Took direct road to Des Moines; Meals; Red Cross treated us to ice cream; From Des Moines pulled to camp by trolly; Taken to barracks-given breakfast and paper work; Mud everywhere; Will receive discharge tomorrow; Told to report to hospital to have ear examined; Went to Y to several good lectures; Could only put in for breeches, coats and shoes; Had a restless night as Lt. told me I was to be transferred to hospital and given discharge there; Told to remain in quarters while rest of boys took records to be checked; Went to camp H.Q then to infirmary; Doctor said further treatment unnecessary; Expect to be held at least five more days; Men going to final examination and to depot brigades to be mustered out; Almost on the edge of camp; Some men able to get passes to Des Moines; Placed me in charge of men for kitchen duty; Went to movies with Reid and Anderson-ladies from Des Moines at Y dancing with boys; Stayed near barrack in case called for examination or transfer; Good dinner; Everything very quiet; Signed 135 immediately after breakfast; Had charge of detail to clean up bath house; Large number of men went from here to discharging center

April 14, 1919: Quarantined for diphtheria

Snowing; Fire guard; Doctor came and took cultures of all men in Co.; Worked on service records in afternoon; Brought mine the 10th and today it is nowhere to be found; Doctor examined throats; All number one causals put on detail for fixing walks; Went to final examination after dinner; Quarantine lifted this morning; Sent home gas mask, helmet; Men examined had to be sworn in; Had to go to war compensation board to make out claims; Cleaned for Saturday morning inspection; Went to Des Moines and took in relay races

April 20,1919: Easter Sunday

Went to Easter service at Y; Visited Dick; Sent to discharge center; Signed final clothing slip; Signing papers all day; Could not leave barracks unless in formation

April 22, 1919: Nineteen months since entering service; Had papers checked over; Pay and discharge at eight o'clock; Left in trucks-took car for Des Moines; Left for Mitchell; Met Mr. and Mrs. Jim Black in depot-travelled as far as Sioux City; Reached Mitchell April 24th; Reached home at 11am

Lists battle sites; Lists medical issues; Lists names of various people; Citations awarded to men of Machine Gun Co. 118th Infantry; Drawings of various division insignia; Clothing items and random information; Lists military supplies; French words with English translations

From the service of Corporal Thomas R. Shook, Company D, 340 Machine Gun Battalion at Camp Funston, Kansas; then Machine Gun Company, 119th Regiment, 30th Division, AEF.
Date December 26, 1918 - April 22, 1919
Year Range from 1918
Year Range to 1919
People Shook, Thomas R.
Subjects World War I
Clothing & dress
Letters (Home)
Military service
Military personnel
Military life
Card games
Wounds & injuries
Military parades & ceremonies
Military discharges