Military retirement ceremonies offer friends, colleagues and others to thank the retiring veteran for his services and sacrifice.
Such ceremonies are usually solemn occasions although humorous recollections about the retiree's experience in service are often encouraged.
The formal ceremony usually has the following elements:
The speech may include humorous comments but the overall tone should be patriotic and inspiring.
If you are attending a retirement ceremony as a civilian and this is a new experience for you, relax. The military has an established protocol for such occasions and there will be a master of ceremonies who tells you exactly what to do, when to stand and how to show appropriate respect for the national anthem and other music.
You may have an occasion to make a speech during the military retirement ceremony or perhaps give a toast at the reception afterwards. For ideas to inspire you, check out this collection of what others have said about military service and our veterans.
And if you are hosting the party, there are some great suggestions from this website for military spouses.