US Airman Sacked For Taking Oath With a Dinosaur Puppet

Friday, April 20, 2018

US airman sacked for taking oath with a dinosaur puppet

Robin Brown filmed the "appalling" and "embarrassing" ceremony as a joke to show her children before the clip went viral.

A non-commissioned officer with the US National Guard has been removed from her post after reciting her enlistment oath with a dinosaur puppet. 

Master Sergeant Robin Brown, a senior NCO with the Air National Guard, is facing other action after a video of the joke surfaced online.

The unconventional ceremony was filmed for Ms Brown's children to watch later, the AirForceTimes reports.

Footage shows Ms Brown facing a colonel in front of a United States flag, with a tyrannosaurus puppet head on her raised right hand.

Her superior then reads lines from the oath for her to repeat, including: "I will obey the orders of the President of the United States and the Governor of Tennessee."

As she reads out the verses, she moves the mouth of the puppet in time with what she's saying.

The colonel, who has not been named, manages to keep a straight face throughout the ceremony, which was later accused of being disrespectful online.

He has since been forced to retire, US military newspaper Stars and Stripes reports.

Army Major General Terry Haston, the adjutant general for the Tennessee National Guard, announced on Facebook on Wednesday that a unit sergeant has also been removed from his role for filming the ceremony.

Mr Haston wrote in his Facebook post: "I am absolutely embarrassed that a senior officer and a senior NCO took such liberties with a time-honoured military tradition.

"The Tennessee National Guard holds the Oath of Enlistment in the highest esteem because that oath signifies every service member's commitment to defend our state, nation and the freedoms we all enjoy.

"Not taking this oath solemnly and with the utmost respect is firmly against the traditions and sanctity of our military family and will not be tolerated.

"The Tennessee National Guard leadership as a whole is appalled by the actions of these individuals, which do not represent our nation's service members nor the airmen and soldiers of Tennessee."

The video went viral on Saturday after it was filmed by an unnamed unit sergeant

Ms Brown, who worked in the Tennessee Joint Public Affairs Office, was identifiable because she says her name as part of the oath.

Randy Harris, the director of joint public affairs for the Tennessee Military Department, would not identify the other two airmen.

William Jones, a spokesman for the joint public affairs office, confirmed that the enlistment ceremony was official after reports suggested it might have been staged.

Ms Brown's enlistment ceremony took place on Friday, with the video going viral by Saturday.

Social media users are reported to have attacked Ms Brown for being disrespectful in the footage.

The colonel was also criticised for allowing the joke to take place, for not raising his right hand, and for not having memorised the oath.

Lieutenant General Scott Rice, director of the Air National Guard, posted a statement on Facebook blasting the video.

He wrote: "I'm equally shocked and dismayed by this event that mocks such a cherished and honorable occasion.