The Order of the Spur is a Cavalry tradition in the United States Army. For a cavalry trooper (the word for Soldier in the Cavalry) to join the order of the spur, they must pass a series of tests set by their command culminating the final test--the spur ride. Once accomplished, the trooper is awarded spurs to be worn with their military uniform. A trooper may forgo the tests and join the order of the spur by seeing combat with their cavalry unit. In some units gold spurs are awarded for combat inductions, while silver spurs represent induction into the order of the spur via a spur ride. Therefore, silver spurs and gold spurs hold a relationship in the cavalry as the expert infantryman badge and the combat infantryman badge holds in the infantry.
Once inducted into the order of the spur it is for life, and the status travels with the soldier from unit to unit.
The Spur Ride is an event normally held over multiple days during which a Trooper must pass a series of physical and mental tests that evaluate leadership, technical and tactical proficiency, and the ability to operate as part of a team under high levels of stress and fatigue, under both day and night conditions. A written test is often administered, with questions that cover United States Cavalry and unit history. During the Spur Ride, candidates will be required to recite from memory the traditional cavalry poem, Fiddler's Green, or other traditions or historical information pertaining to the Cavalry.
The criteria for participation in the Spur Ride are set by each Cavalry unit, usually at the Squadron level. Many units require demonstrated leadership ability through planning and conducting unit-level training events such as gunnery ranges, soldier task training or other NCO/Officer-level tasks. Some examples of minimum criteria are:
Score a minimum of 250 on the Army Physical Fitness Test (APFT).
Meet height and weight requirements of AR 600-9.
Qualify "Expert" with primary weapon (M9 or M16/M4).
Be recommended by Troop First Sergeant and Commander.
Upon successful completion of the Spur Ride, new spur holders are welcomed with a formal induction ceremony.
Anyone wondering why I thought you needed to know all of this or have you all guessed why?
Yes, Christopher officially joined the Order of the Spur today and has earned his Silver Spurs. HOOAH Son, we are so proud of you. As soon as I can get him to send me some pictures I will post them here.
Have a great day,