The Wisconsin National Guard announced Tuesday that one of its soldiers has been "indefinitely suspended from the funeral honors detail pending an investigation" after posting a photo on her Instagram account that many are calling offensive and disrespectful.
The image, which has since been deleted from the photo sharing site, shows 14 uniformed military members posing in front of a training casket draped with an American flag. The caption reads, "We put the FUN in funeral -- your fearless honor guard from various states."
The soldier who is front and center in the image is the only National Guard member present, according to Major Paul Rickert, the Director of Communications for the Wisconsin National Guard. The other people in the picture are from unidentified branches of the military, according to Rickert.
The Wisconsin National Guard confirmed in a statement Tuesday that the image was snapped during a training program at a National Guard training facility in North Little Rock, Arkansas.
Another photo posted to the same soldier's Instagram account, which is now disabled, is a selfie with the caption: "It's so d**n cold out... WHY have a funeral outside?! Somebody's getting a jacked up flag." There appears to be a folded American flag in the background of the image, which lives on in screen grabs that are being shared across the web.
"I was appalled by the offensive photos and comments that appeared on this Soldier's social media site regarding her duties as a funeral honor guard member," Maj. Gen. Donald P. Dunbar, the Wisconsin adjutant general, is quoted as saying in the statement.
The law requires that the Department of Defense provide military funeral honors to eligible veterans, according to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. The service includes, at a minimum, a two-person uniformed detail to conduct a playing of taps and the folding and presentation of the flag. Additional elements may include a rifle detail, a color guard or a military flyover.
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The Wisconsin National Guard said in the statement that it "expects all Soldiers who carry out this sacred detail to handle it with professionalism and honor."
HLN has reached out to the soldier who posted the photos, but has yet to hear back. She has received several death threats, according to the National Guard, which says it has taken measures to ensure her safety.