Soldiers mugging around empty casket sparks furor

Soldiers mugging around empty casket sparks furor

A group photograph showing soldiers clowning around an empty, flag-draped casket has sparked a furor on Facebook, in military chat rooms and other social media where people say it’s disrespectful of veterans and those killed in action.

The Wisconsin National Guard responded Tuesday by announcing that it had suspended the soldier who apparently posted the photograph online from her honor guard duties. The photograph was taken at a guard training facility in Arkansas and included soldiers from other units.

The National Guard also was taking steps to protect the soldier after she received death threats.

The photograph originally posted on Instagram shows about a dozen soldiers around a casket. Several hug playfully. One flashes a peace sign. Another has his back turned and is pointing off in the distance.

The caption reads, “We put the FUN in funeral — your fearless honor guard from various states.”

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