ARLINGTON, Va., October 13, 2009 – The Maryland National Guard recently paid tribute to Maryland service members who have lost their lives in the line of duty during a ceremony at Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, Va.
Brig. Gen. James A. Adkins, the adjutant general of Maryland, laid a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in remembrance of Maryland’s fallen military heroes.
“I was honored to have the opportunity to lay a wreath at Arlington National Cemetery’s Tomb of the Unknowns with Maryland’s Civilian Aide to the Secretary of the Army, Mr. Turhan Robinson,” said Gen. Adkins. “We must never forget the tremendous sacrifices of these Americans and their families. Marylanders have a proud tradition of defending their state and country dating back to well before the founding of this great nation.”
Maryland military history dates back to 1634 when two militia captains landed at St. Mary’s City, Md. Since then, Maryland service members have served with distinction in virtually every American conflict.
• Members of the “Maryland Line” repeatedly charged a vastly superior British force at the Battle of Long Island during the American Revolution, buying time for the Continental Army to escape.
• Maryland militia units fought on both sides of the Civil War. At the Battle of Front Royal, the Confederate 1st Maryland fought the Union 1st Maryland.
• As part of the 29th Infantry Division, Marylanders took part in the D-Day landings of June 1944 and fought their way across France, Holland, and Germany to link up with the Russians at the Elbe River. During the war, the 29th Division suffered one of the highest casualty rates of any American division.
The Maryland National Guard is currently comprised of more than 7,000 members and has an economic impact of nearly $300 million on Maryland. Since 9/11, nearly 8,400 Maryland National Guard Soldiers and Airmen have been called to support various mobilizations including Operations Iraqi Freedom, Enduring Freedom, Noble Eagle, Jump Start and the relief efforts for multiple hurricanes.