CHARLESTON — Cadet Trent Keitt “T.K.” Purcell of Newberry has earned a position on the 2013 Summerall Guards, a silent drill platoon at The Citadel, The Military College of South Carolina.
Purcell is among 61 rising seniors who have gone through a rigorous physical training and initiation process to be selected for membership. Members are chosen for their physical stamina and drill proficiency and come from every company in the South Carolina Corps of Cadets.
The 2013 Summerall Guards made its debut on March 17, during Corps Day Weekend.
The platoon was created in 1932 and named for Gen. Charles P. Summerall, former chief of staff of the U.S. Army and president of The citadel from 1931-1953. Its purpose is to exemplify the exactness and thoroughness with which The Citadel cadets are trained. Members come from nearly every company in the Corps.
The drill which has never been written down is a unique series of movements based on the old German close order drill and performed to a silent count. Each year’s guards take responsibility for teaching the next year’s unit the precise drill.
Purcell is a business administration major and a member of Tango Company.
The Citadel, founded in 1842, is a public, coeducational military college in Charleston and offers a classic military education for young men and women seeking a college experience that is intense, meaningful and academically strong. With the core values of honor, duty and respect, The Citadel prepare principled leaders for the military as well as the global workplace.