The Sentinel — The Story Behind the Image
SGT Charles Lee "Chuck" Gauldin, Tomb Badge #248, 3rd U.S. Infantry Regiment.
Several years ago, during another snowstorm that shutdown Washington, DC, The Patriot Post published an image of a Sentinel keeping watch at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in the midst of heavy snowfall. We distributed it in several versions, which were shared virally across social media platforms.
At the time, we knew the photo was about 30 years old given that Sentinels now wear a winter cap instead of the barracks cover seen in the photo. We determined this Sentinel was SGT Charles Lee “Chuck” Gauldin, Tomb Badge #248, 3rd U.S. Infantry Regiment (The Old Guard). However, we were not able to locate him or his family.
Within days of posting this image, though, we received the following message:
“Thank you so much for posting the picture of the Honor Guard at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. You see that man — my late husband — meant the world to me then as he does now. That picture was taken when I was pregnant with the first of our two children. Charles died unexpectedly in 1997. His family and I are touched and honored by the picture and thank you and The Patriot Post staff for posting it. What a sweet, sweet memory for us.”
In the most recent storm to hit the East Coast, national media outlets promoted our Sentinel image and the spirit of honor it reflects, but did not acknowledge who he was.
Now you know. God bless the Gauldin family!