|Saint Barbara crushing her infidel father,|
with a kneeling donor,
by Domenico Ghirlandaio, ca. 1473
St. Barbara was persecuted by her own father due to her commitment to her faith. While imprisoned, torches used in her torture were miraculously extinguished when they were brought near her. Eventually she was martyred by beheading, the execution carried out by her father's own hand. Tradition holds that he was struck by lightening on his way home afterwards and his body consumed by flame.
Today, the United States Army Field Artillery Association and the United States Army Air Defense Artillery Association maintain the Order of Saint Barbara as an honorary military society. Members of the US Army and US Marine Corp are eligible for nomination for membership.