One Last Hooah
By: Caylen Belden
This past Thursday, May 2, Pueblo County Highschool JROTC held its annual Awards Ceremony. This ceremony is held annually to recognize the accomplishments of the cadet corp throughout the year, many of the awards presented at this ceremony are not just school based awards, some of them are national awards presented by nationally renowned organizations such as: the Scottish Rite of Freemasonry, the Veterans of Foreign Wars Association, and the Special Forces Association. This night is a night of emotionally charged anxiety as the senior staff passed the mantel of responsibility to the incoming junior staff. Outgoing senior C/LTC Nathaniel Romero had this to say about leaving, “I’ll miss making more memories on the numerous trips with the rifle team, as well as the many friendships I’ve found in the JROTC Program.”
Though we look forward into the future we can’t help but mourn the loss of what has become family in the hard learning and uncountable fun our four years of JROTC. At the end of ceremony C/MAJ Laura Ashlee Niichel gave a heart rending speech about the love she has for the JROTC Program and SGM/R Arnold Lewis for giving her a place to fit in, in a school where she was “too smart to be a jock and to athletic to be a nerd”. She also recalls her favorite memory in JROTC, “As I have made numerous memories from my JROTC career, the most memorable none would be JCLC when the tent Kayla and I were staying in flooded, so we had to sleep in the lodge, and also when this girl named Bamfaulk got ‘got in the neck with a pine cone’”
This year 5 new awards were introduced, these awards are trophies to remember the legacy of the Hornet Battalion top 3, battalion commander, executive officer and command sergeant major. These legacy trophies will encourage the future leaders of the hornet battalion to look back and take caution from our failures and encouragement from our successes.
The 14 seniors of the hornet battalion have been led by Sergeant Major for the past four years, he has helped shape us into young men and women we are today, he has lifted us up in the ad times and celebrated us in our triumphs, though we all have been yelled at by him at times, he always had our best interest in mind, he has become a father to all of us and we will all deeply miss him when we leave and though he will not show it, he will miss us just as much. C/MAJ Kayla Mihelich said this about him, “I will miss Sergeant Major the most. During the last four years Sergeant Major became my positive male role model and my hero. Major pushed me to do things I may have not wanted to do, but in the end, I never regretted anything he ever made me do. Sergeant Major gave me the structure I needed to be able to become a responsible productive American adult. There were many times he yelled at me, but he always had his heart in the right place”. Thank you SGM Arnold Lewis for all you have done for us.
All-in-all this night that we will never forget a night of laughter tears joy and pain. Hooah Hornet Battalion good luck in the coming 2019-2020 school year may learn from your mistakes and rejoice in your success, make the best with what you have cause once it’s gone you’ll never get it back.