The RSM (Regimental Sergeant Major) of a recruit training unit is called in to see the Commanding Officer.
The CO tells the RSM that they have received a telegram that Recruit Smith's Father has died and so the CO wants the RSM to inform Recruit Smith of this sad news.
The RSM goes to the Orderly Room, finds out that Smith is doing drill training on the Parade Ground and goes over there. When he arrives he sees Smith's squad marching up and down. so he marches up to the squad and in his best parade ground voice, screams out at the top of his lungs
"Squad, Halt.... Recruit Smith, your father is dead.... Squad, Quick March".
The CO, who has heard and seen this through his office window, sends for the RSM and explains to him that when delivering bad news to recruits, there is a need to be a lot more diplomatic as Recruits are not tough gnarled veterans.
A week later another telegram arrives for the CO, telling him that Recruit Smith's Mother has died. The CO decides that he will again use the RSM to pass on the bad news, so he sends for the RSM. When the RSM arrives, the CO tells him what has happened, reminds him to be diplomatic, and sends him off to do the job.
The RSM finds out that Smith is once again practicing drill on the Parade Ground so he goes over there and sure enough, there is the squad marching up and down.
The RSM marches over to them and in his best parade ground voice, screams out at the top of his lungs
"Squad, Halt.... All those with Mothers, one pace forward, March.... Smith, where the hell do you think your going?".