US Naval Academy ‘plebes’ climb greased monument to end freshmen year

Matt Seyler/ABC News(ANNAPOLIS, Md.) -- The U.S. Naval Academy freshmen scaled the Herndon Monument in the annual climb Monday.

The event was part of a tradition in Annapolis, Maryland, where the freshmen or "plebes" build a human pyramid and climb a 21-foot monument to replace the "dixie cup" hat with an upperclassman's hat. Finishing in one hour and five minutes, they beat last year’s time of two hours and 21 minutes.

Upperclassmen slathered the monument in nearly 50 pounds of vegetable shortening and freshmen were required to remove their shoes before they started.

"We call it the culminating event for the end of their freshmen year," said Jenny Erickson, a U.S. Naval Academy spokesperson.

The first recorded climb was in 1950, without grease. The greasy climb is a rite of passage for "plebes," or freshmen, to mark officially becoming Midshipmen 4th Class. Christian Schwein, 19, from the 27th Company, had the honor of placing the hat atop the monument this year.

According to tradition, the midshipman who gets the hat on top will become the first admiral in the class.

The Herndon Monument is named for Navy Cmdr. William Lewis Herndon, who "possessed the qualities of discipline, teamwork and courage."

Much like the monument, the climb represents the teamwork, and perseverance freshmen have to endure in the first year at the academy. In addition to their academic responsibilities, they undergo military-style training including six weeks of "Plebe Summer" which is similar to basic training in the military.

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Parents brawl during youth baseball game after disagreeing with 13-year-old umpire

Parents brawl during youth baseball game after disagreeing with 13-year-old umpirefstop123/iStock(LAKEWOOD, Colo.) -- A baseball game between a group of 7-year-old kids degenerated into an all-out brawl with parents throwing haymakers, other cowering for cover and a woman even jumping on someone's back.

The reason for the brawl: a parent didn't like the calls being made by a 13-year-old umpire.

The fight began at Westgate Elementary School in Lakewood, Colo., a suburb southwest of Denver, on Saturday at about noon as 15 to 20 adults got into a violent tussle, according to Lakewood police.

The brawl was still ongoing as Lakewood police arrived at the scene.

These adults took over the field and began assaulting each other on 6/15 during a youth baseball game. We're looking for any info, in particular to ID the man in the white shirt/teal shorts. Several people have already been cited in this fight and injuries were reported. pic.twitter.com/ieenhwCrbU

— Lakewood Police (@LakewoodPDCO) June 18, 2019

Police issued four citations for disorderly conduct, but said they are still searching for others involved in the fight.

Police are looking for an adult in a white T-shirt and teal shorts in particular because he can be seen in the video throwing sucker punches at people looking in the other direction. Police said it is unknown if this person is a parent of one of the children in the game.

There were a few minor injuries and one person suffered serious bodily injury, police told ABC News. No details on the injury were available.

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