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Army Major explains Retreat ceremony

By Dana Molina, Multimedia Journalist/Telemundo Anchor, dana.molina@krdo.com
Published On: Feb 26 2014 07:41:34 PM CST

Retreat is an old Army tradition that marks the end of the day

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. -

The ceremony behind a controversial Fort Carson soldier photo is considered an old tradition with a lot of meaning.

Pfc. Tariqka Sheffey posted a selfie on social media this week, with the caption, "This is me laying back in my car hiding so I don't have to salute the 1700 flag, KEEP ALL YOUR 'THATS SO DISRESPECTFUL/HOWRUDE/ETC.' COMMENTS TO YOURSELF cuz, right now, IDGAFFFF."

The salute the soldier mentions is known as Retreat.

"Retreat is basically a ceremony we do at the end of every duty day," Army Major Herbert Flather said.

At 1700 hours, or 5 PM, the song Retreat plays over loudspeakers. Everyone faces the flat standing at what's known as parade rest, a more relaxed stance. Major Flather said every military member who is in a car is expected to pull over, get out and participate.

When the song's over, To the Color begins to play. The American flag is brought down, and soldiers switch to the more rigid attention position. They salute until the flag comes down and the song ends.

"(It's) to at the end of the day, remember who it is we're fighting for, the American people and for our friends and family," Major Flather said.

Everyone in uniform is expected to participate. The consequences of not wanting to participate could vary.

"It's going to be completely going to be dependent on that unit and the situation," Major Flather said. "I can't tell you exactly what's going to happen or what can happen, because well, it changes, varies, from unit to unit."

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