Simran Singh Lamba has become the first Sikh with turban and beard to graduate as a soldier from the army of the United States of America (USA), nearly after three decades. Just hours after becoming US citizen today, Spc. Simran Singh graduated from Fort Jackson, South Carolina.
“When the bullets begin flying, it doesn’t concern anyone what religion you are. I bleed the same colour,” said Spec. Simran Lamba, 26, after his graduation ceremony from basic combat training.
Lamba said his black turban, full beard, unshorn hair and religious beliefs posed no problems during his 10 weeks of training.
“I am proud to be a Sikh, I’m proud to be a U.S. citizen, and proud to be a U.S. Army soldier,” he said.
The US Army already has two recently graduated Sikhs medical officers ( Tejdeep Singh and Kamaljeet Singh) , but it hasn’t had one in the enlisted ranks. Simran Singh was recruited because of his special skills in two languages Indian Hindi and Punjabi.
“The Sikhs are warriors in Indian culture. Once our soldiers heard that, they were all for him,” said Lamba’s battalion commander, Lt. Col. Bryan Hernandez.