Pelion, SC (Paul Kirby) – The Pelion High School JROTC held its annual banquet last week in the Performing Arts Center at the school. There were many distinguished guests from various organizations in attendance. They included the American Legion, the Daughters of the American Revolution, the Grand Lodge of the Freemasons, the US Marine Corps League, the VFW, and the Order of the Purple Heart. There were quite a few more that also attended, observed the ceremony, and presented awards to outstanding cadets.
The ceremony opened when the crowd was called to order, the cadets paraded in and took a place at their assigned seats, and Cadet Colonial Conner Westberry made a few remarks. That was followed by the presentation of the colors by the Honor Guard. There was then a beautiful rendition of the National Anthem sung in two-part harmony by Cadets Rihanna Dowling and Jennifer Aremndariz. The Pledge of Allegiance was led by Cadet Captain Peyton Freeman and he was followed by Cadet Captain Martha Young who let the battalion in the Cadet Creed. This was followed by the presentation of awards. The entire ceremony was presided over by Cadet Lieutenant Colonel Elijah Robinson who did a masterful job with his smooth baritone voice.
Some of the most prestigious awards included The Distinguished Award for Academic Excellence that was presented to Cadet Lauren Duenke. Academic Excellence Awards were also presented to a cadet from each class. Those were presented to:
Freshman – Allison Bramlett
Sophomore – Makenna McLeod
Junior - Sydney Green
Senior - Lauren Duenke
You can see a list of all the awards presented by clicking this link: AWARDS
From this point forward, there were awards presented to cadets who participated in the Color Guard, the Honor Guard, the Rifle Team, the Cadet Challenge Presidential Fitness Award, and a host of others. There were also National Awards presented by many of the special guest who represented their individual organizations. Each cadet stood at attention then proudly marched across the stage and accepted their award in the form of a ribbon for their uniform, in some cases a medal, and in others a certificate.
As the ceremony drew to a close, families met their cadets beaming with pride at what their cadet student had accomplished during the 2018/19 school year. Many have already committed to serve in the armed forces of our country and one was represented by his mother as he has already started his basic training. These exceptional young people are the future protectors, leaders, and standouts of our country.
Congratulation to all the cadets, their families, and the leadership of the school’s JROTC program for another outstanding year.