The U.S. Naval Academy’s plebe class has capped a greased-up Herndon Monument, as about 1,000 first-year students took part in the unusual annual institution Monday afternoon.
With teamwork and diligence, the students organized a human pyramid to aid classmates clamber the slick shrine and supersede the hat known as the “Dixie cup” from the top of the gravestone with a midshipmen’s hat, marking the completion of its plebe year.
Peter Rossi of Phoenix capped the 21 -foot obelisk slathered with vegetable decreasing. It was done in 2 hours, 9 hours and 35 seconds.
Last year’s class achieved the feat in exactly two hours, 21 times, and 21 seconds while the previous class accomplished it in one hour, 12 times and 30 seconds, Fox 5 DC reported.
The class of 1962 clambered up the obelisk in 12 instants — the first recorded period, reported The Washington Post. The class of 1972 has the fastest duration at one minute 30 seconds — but no grease was employed that time. The class of 1998 has the slowest hour, taking 4 hours, 5 minutes and 17 seconds to finish because upperclassmen glued and videotapeed the Dixie cup hat to the top.
Plebes began climbing the gravestone at the establishment in Annapolis, Md ., in 1940. The original purpose of the climbing was to have a member of the class perch on top of the statue, The Post reported. The placement of an officer’s white hat started seven years later. In 1949, upperclassmen began smearing lard on the tombstone to build the climbing more challenging. They targeted a plebe Dixie cup on top of the tombstone starting in 1962, according to The Post.
According to legend, The Post reported, the plebe who prepares the upperclassman’s hat at the monument’s pinnacle is destined to become the first admiral in the class. So far this mythology has yet to become reality.
The Associated Press contributed to this report .