Silence, Respect, Dignity and Perseverance not only represent the aspects of the Sentinel’s Creed, but the name of the four pistols being presented to the Sentinel Guard protecting the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. The pistols were created by SIG Sauer using the specifications of the U.S. Army’s M17 Modular Handgun System and are chambered in 9 mm.
Presentation of the M17 Tomb of the Unknown Pistols will take place Oct. 11 at Arlington National Cemetery Chapel at 9 a.m. Included with the private presentation will be a Changing of the Guard right afterward, where the 3rd Guard soldiers will return to their duty with the pistols. The presentation will conclude with a wreath-laying ceremony at the tomb at 10:15 a.m.
Each gun has wooden grips made from the same wood as the ship, the USS Olympia, which transported the Unknown to the United States in 1921.
Along the slide are XXI cocking serrations engraved to signify the 21 steps it takes the Tomb Sentinels to walk by the Tomb of the Unknown, as well as the 21-Gun Salute. In a nod to the classical Greek elements used in the Tomb of the Unknown, the figures of Peace, Victory and Valor are engraved on the side place and the names of the figures are engraved on the bottom of the magazine, along with a Tomb Sentinel badge number.
Every part of the guns have been designed with reverence and respect toward the Tomb of the Unknown throughout its long history. To view more photos of the pistols, visit here.