Cadets Paying Their Respects:  Benedictine Participates in the Funeral of a Fallen World War II Sailor

Cadets Paying Their Respects:  Benedictine Participates in the Funeral of a Fallen World War II Sailor
By Hunter Cheely ’22

On Friday March 6, Benedictine Cadets took part in the funeral service of Andrew Schmitz. Schmitz was killed when a Japanese torpedo hit the U.S.S Oklahoma during the attacks at Pearl Harbor, December 7, 1941.

The Cadets formed a saber arch and a color guard was their also. "This was a very special opportunity the Cadets had," said Charles Williamson (Benedictine Class 2021, and one of the members of the saber arch). "I am honored to have the opportunity to participate in this historic event."

At the funeral service there were various groups of people present. Richmond, Chesterfield and Hanover Police were present at the funeral service. Various family members of Andrew Schmitz's family from all around the United States. A veteran biker group was also present and rode in the funeral procession. The United States Navy was at the funeral and were pall bears of the coffin. "The Cadets performed magnificently," stated Mike Forster (Benedictine faculty member present at the funeral). "After the funeral was over I received several comments on how well the Cadets performed and looked during the service."

The funeral procession went to Virginia Veteran Cemetery in Amelia. There Mr. MacLeod (Benedictine Pipe and Drum teacher) played the bagpipes. The Navy performed a 21-gun salute and Andrew Schmitz was laid to rest a whole lot closer to home. "I believe this showed how professional Benedictine Cadets can be," said Williamson. "This also might bring up more opportunities for the Cadets in the future."

Cadets Paying Their Respects:  Benedictine Participates in the Funeral of a Fallen World War II Sailor
Cadets Paying Their Respects:  Benedictine Participates in the Funeral of a Fallen World War II Sailor

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