First Salute Coins
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This is the major fundraiser for the Club, and provides First Salute coins to the graduating firsties and their parents. We obtain the breathtaking uncirculated American Eagle silver coins, which are one ounce of pure silver, and whose value fluctuates with the silver market. These coins are used to commemorate the first salute of newly commissioned Ensigns and Second Lieutenants.
Naval Academy tradition says that the newly commissioned officers are to give a silver dollar to the person delivering their first salute after the pinning on of their new shoulder boards following
commissioning. The tradition states that one has to buy their first salute, and each salute after that is earned by the new officer by gaining the respect of their subordinates. Today, the ‘paying’ for their first salute is considered a way to show respect and gratitude for those superior enlisted personnel who helped the new officer achieve commissioned status.
The first salute is often pre-arranged to be given by a person of particular significance to the graduate, such as a relative, a faculty member, or an enlisted person who has helped him/her along the way. Some parents obtain a coin for each year their Midshipman is at the Academy and presents the coins as a memento to the Mid upon commissioning.
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