Albans_Cross.jpg (1913 bytes) The Blue Beret Crest Albans_Cross.jpg (1913 bytes)

St. Alban's Cross

We have St. Alban's Cross pins available.

Thanks to Jason DeMark (IL Wing) for doing the foot work on this project.

These are reproductions of the originals

 $7.00 each including shipping

Please do not refer to these as "cadre pins."
They are the blue beret crest.
If you earn the beret, you earn the St. Alban's Cross.

To order a St. Alban's Cross pin, send a check to:

Ted Lohr
9103 N Humbert Rd
Brighton, IL 62012

Due to 1 person screwing it up,
I will no longer accept PayPal.

 

 

The crest worn on our berets is a symbol that embodies the Blue Beret spirit. The design is the St. Alban's cross. It is a gold cross on a dark blue background. The cross was picked for what St. Alban stood for.

St. Alban was a monk, who was a martyr in medieval times. He was put to death for giving a condemned man his cloak. A man who was willing to give everything, including his life, for his fellow man. This is the same feeling and dedication felt by all Blue Berets.


The crest is designed in accordance with the Air Force standard for beret crests (using enamel and chrome/brass) and the Civil Air Patrol standard for simplicity in design. The crest is in the shape of a shield, representing our mission as "protectors" of human life, our strength in adverse times, and our military heritage. The crest design is gold cross superimposed on a dark blue background. The crest is worn on the beret, centered over the left eye.


Contrary to popular belief, the beret is not the most important symbol to the Blue Berets. It's the crest, our "Cross".

Often you will see pictures of "old school" Berets with a silver St. Alban's cross on their berets. This is how that came about. When Beret candidates first reported in, they were issued their cross to be worn on the front of their fatigue caps [or, in earlier years of the program a French Beret that was issued to them]. As the encampment progressed, the candidates performed a little ritual. At the end of each day, they would rub the crests on their foreheads. The acid and salt in their sweat would slowly dissolve the cheap gold electroplating on the crests. This ritual was used as a measure of how hard you were working to earn your beret. If you worked hard enough, by the end of the encampment, your beret crest would be blue and silver.

 

This is a coincidence - The St. Alban's cross is also the emblem for the USAF Basic Military Training School (37th Training Wing) at Lackland AFB.  The use of the Alban's Cross emulates our endeavor to train new professionals to enter our organization and foster the Air Force spirit for future generations.

 

The History of St. Alban

St. Alban was the first martyr of England, his own country (homeland). During a persecution of Christians, Alban, though a pagan, hid a priest in his house. The priest made such a great impression on him that Alban received instructions and became a Christian himself.

In the meantime, the governor had been told that the priest was hiding in Alban's house, and he sent his soldiers to capture him. But Alban changed clothes with his guest, and gave himself up in his stead. The judge was furious when he found out that the priest had escaped and he said to Alban, "You shall get the punishment he was to get unless you worship the gods." The Saint answered that he would never worship those false gods again. "To what family do you belong?" demanded the judge. "That does not concern you," said Alban. "If you want to know my religion, I am a Christian." Angrily the judge commanded him again to sacrifice to the gods at once. "Your sacrifices are offered to devils," answered the Saint. "They cannot help you or answer your requests. The reward for such sacrifices is the everlasting punishment of Hell."

Since he was getting nowhere, the judge had Alban whipped. Then he commanded him to be beheaded. On the way to the place of execution, the soldier who was to kill the Saint was converted himself, and he too, became a martyr.

More Information on St. Alban

The life of St. Alban before his conversion is not known. Legends say that he was a Roman soldier at Verulanium; he may have been a Romano-Briton. Scholars have suggested that Verulanium, which is now St. Albans in Hertfordshire, was part of an enclave in Britain which resisted Roman rule. Alban, a pagan, is said to have sheltered a priest who was fleeing persecution. Alban took the priest's cloak and allowed him to escape. Roman soldiers arrested Alban, who was later beheaded. Bede dates the event to the reign of Diocletian (c. 305); modern scholars predate it to the reign of Septimius Severus (c. 209) or Decius. The first reference to the cult of Alban is found in a V Century life of St. Germanus of Auxerre, who visited a shrine during his preaching crusade against Pelagianism in Britain. Gildas, in the VI Century, relates the story of Alban's martyrdom, and Bede details the story and discusses a church dedicated to the martyr. The traditional site of Alban's death, Holmhurst Hill, became the site of St. Alban Abbey, founded by King Offa in the VIII Century. During a Danish invasion, Alban's relics are said to have been transported to Ely; St. Canute's in Odense claims to have relics of Alban, which Canute stole in his 1075 raid on York. What remained of Alban's relics were scattered in the time of the Dissolution.

 

Wikipedia article about St. Alban http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saint_Alban

 

This is Not an Official WebSite & does not reflect the views or opinions of the U.S. Air Force, Civil Air Patrol or the National Blue Beret Program.

LINKS OR REFERENCES TO INDIVIDUALS OR COMPANIES DOES NOT CONSTITUTE AN ENDORSEMENT OF ANY INFORMATION, PRODUCT OR SERVICE YOU MAY RECEIVE FROM SUCH SOURCES.  PER CAPR 110-1.


If you have pictures, information, or graphics to add to this page, please e-mail them to me. Thanks, Lt Col Ted Lohr, Webmaster

Back to the Blue Beret Page

e-mail:

Lt Col Ted Lohr

SSgt Chris Yaroch

B.B.A.T.W.

Please note:

  • I don't have any info or contact with Nat. HQ about applications

  • I DO NOT have any information about the current program

  • Please DO NOT ask me any questions about the current NBB program

Copyright firearsn 1997-2012.
Last revised: 29 December 2011.