Citing a dated and traditionally disregarded city ordinance, Beloit Police have asked the Honor Guard to exclude the time-honored 21-gun salute before a veteran’s burial on President’s Day. The regulation states no weapons should be fired within the city limits, but those who have served in the guard for half a century say this is the first time they have ever been asked to ignore tradition. Not surprisingly, veterans and other concerned residents packed the City Hall to complain.
According to American Military News, BPD Chief David Zibolski argued the noise in a residential area could “cause concerns over public safety,” adding that honorary firings stand as a potential risk to the neighborhood's “general peace.” However, citizens’ and veterans’ disagreement with Zibolski was virtually unanimous. Dave Luebke, City Council president, summed up the sentiment of most in attendance: “The salute is a dignified and honorable way to honor our veterans, and that will not change.”