History page


The Honor Guard was formed in July, 1999 when Active Duty Armed Forces were unable to perform military honors for veterans in our area because of their services were needed abroad. To date our Honor Guard has performed over 1,300 Military Honor Ceremonies at the funerals and memorial services for veterans of all branches of the armed forces.

Originally the Honor Guard was part of the Marine Corps League #680 in San Luis Obispo.  In 2008 the unit changed the name to Central Coast Leatherneck Honor Guard and became an independent organization.  All uniformed members of our Honor Guard are honorably discharged veterans authorized to wear their uniform at funerals and patriotic events.

The Honor Guard is a volunteer organization and does not charge the veteran's families for the services.  The Honor Guard pay for their own transportation, care and upkeep of their uniform, owns their weapons, and supplies the ammunition, bugle & flags.

                        MAKE UP of HONOR GUARD:

The Central Coast Leatherneck Honor Guard is comprised of former active duty Marines and veterans from other branches of service that served their country from WWII through the ongoing War on Terrorism with the majority coming from the Korean/Vietnam War era's.  They volunteer their time and maintain their uniform and appearance according to Marine Corps or Military regulations. 

The Honor Guard provides military honors in keeping with military traditions at the funerals or memorial services of any honorably discharged veteran.  They recognize the sacrifices made by veterans and their service to our country.

The Honor Guard's current roster consists of 31 volunteers, 28 are Marine Veterans, and 3 are veterans of other  branches of the Military . During the past several years the Honor Guard has averaged six members at each Military Honors Ceremony. 



When performing in Military Honor Ceremonies all Honor Guard members and special members must wear military type shoes with a high shine, their uniform must be clean, tailored to fit, and worn in accordance with Military regulations. Sun glasses or dark glasses may not be worn during the ceremony.


All Honor Guard members and special members (both uniformed and non-uniformed) when attending any funeral or memorial service as a member of the Leatherneck Honor Guard will always have their face clean shaved (a mustache must be trimmed and cannot extend below the upper lip).  Hair must be short and the hair on the back of the neck cannot touch the collar.  Sideburns cannot extend below the middle of the ear...female members must wear their hair in accordance with Military regulations.

The Central Coast Leatherneck Honor Guard performs Military Honors for all veterans upon request.

The Honor Guard is comprised of Central Coast former Marines who dedicate their time to recognizing the military honors that Veterans are entitled to by law as part of their final ceremony.

Providing the dignity to which your loved one is entitled as an Honorably Discharged member of the United States Armed Forces.

                WE SALUTE....in memory

the HONOR of your veteran's choice
to faithfully serve our country and our military

the COURAGE of your veteran
in the service of our country at home and abroad
in times of peace and war

the COMMITTMENT of your veteran to his or her branch of service and their comrades in arms

Some Thoughts of our prior coordinator SFC Jim Brenton, USA:

Not Enough Marines for Funerals, So Veterans Take Up the Honor

As the coordinator for the Central Coast Leatherneck Honor Guard, a independent¬† organization formed to render military honors at funerals, I could not agree more with the overall feelings that our country’s veterans are being forgotten by the government.
Due to the fact that there are no national cemeteries in our area of California and the government’s lack of money or willingness to provide full military funeral honors for the veterans of this area (even though many veterans’ families requested full military honors for their loved ones), starting in 1999 a small group of Marine veterans, remembering the Corps’ principles of honor, courage and commitment, stepped forward to fill the requests of veterans’ families.

The current membership of the honor guard is 25 volunteers; 23 are Marines and two are from other branches. They served in all wars and conflicts since World War II. They all have honorable discharges and agree to comply with the dress and appearance codes in line with U.S. Marine Corps regulations.

This group of veterans has been conducting military funeral honor ceremonies since 1999, and on November 25, 2016 they rendered their 1,200th military honor ceremony in the San Luis Obispo area.

To quote President Ronald Reagan: “Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. It has to be fought for and defended by each generation.”

My belief is: if veterans such as those of the Central Coast Leatherneck Honor Guard of San Luis Obispo, CA. do not continue to provide military honors for veterans who served to protect the freedom of the United States, then who will? Honoring and respecting the veterans shows their families and friends that the people of a grateful nation truly care about their sacrifices.

SFC Jim Brenton, USA
Coordinator, Central Coast Leatherneck Honor Guard




Leatherneck Honor Guard is an independent organization   All rights reserved.