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History of the ROTC Dept. Silver Punch Bowl Set & Cups

Around 1982 – 83 (date may not be exactly correct), the silver punch bowl set and cups came into being. In an earlier assignment, I (then CPT Ron Munden) was in the 3rd Armored Cavalry Regiment at Ft Bliss, Texas. One of the traditions of the “Brave Rifles” was a ceremonial punch bowl and cups. The cups were purchased by the officers of the regiment. They were engraved with the regimental crest and the officer’s name and date of assignment to the regiment. Upon leaving the regiment, a final toast was made to the departing officer and you took your cup with you. (Otherwise, the collection of cups would be too large to manage). I recommended that we institute a similar program for the detachment. The cadre recommended some changes to the program described above that would make it more relevant and traditional to the ROTC program. Such things as the cups remaining in the detachment since most of the cups would be of alumni and they could use them upon return for Corps of Cadets events. Also, we thought that it was appropriate for cups to be purchased in memory or in honor of another cadet, cadre or individual appropriately associated with the Corps of Cadets. The silver punch bowl, silver ladle and silver serving tray were donated. I am not certain who donated them, but I think I remember. I made arrangements with a jewelry store a couple of blocks from campus to maintain a supply of cups for us. I negotiated a rate of $6 per cup (including engraving on the cup). We sold them for $20 per cup. The money was used to augment the funds that we needed to run High School ROTC Field Day, Hall of Honor ceremonies, etc. It was not much money, but it helped. Based on an inventory that was done just prior to my departure for Ft Leavenworth in 1984, we had about 70 engraved cups in the set.

Story by: Ron Munden 11 August 2015


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