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Wisconsin National Guard suspends soldier for posting controversial photo

Noah Ovshinsky, Wisconsin Public Radio

The Wisconsin National Guard says it has suspended a guardswoman who posted a photo online of a group of soldiers posing around a flag-draped military casket.

The photo, which created an uproar on social media, shows the soldiers joking around and striking comedic poses around the coffin.

The suspended soldier has been identified as Specialist Terry Harrison – a member of the Madison-based 1st Battalion. Major Paul Rickert says the Guard is taking the matter seriously.

“We know, based on what we do, that that could be us some day – our family requesting that funeral honors details,” said Rickert. “So we will be treating this matter with the respect and diligence it deserves.”

The photo features an empty casket and was taken at a training facility in Arkansas.

The Guard says it has begun an investigation; in the meantime, Harrison has been taken off the funeral honors detail.