The following is a press release from Marion High School, shared by Patricia Gibson, director of communications, Marion Community Schools.
Thirteen cadets from Marion High School’s JROTC program recently participated in summer camp at Camp Atterbury, a week of physical and leadership challenges designed to push them beyond what they thought they could do. Once Marion cadet was named the best cadet in his platoon, and three others were named to the Top 10.
Cadets were selected for recognition by their cadre/instructors for recognition from their respective platoon. Because of his superior performance and attitude, Cadet Command Sgt. Maj. Joseph O’Donnell was selected as the No. 1 cadet from his platoon of approximately 55 cadets. He was one of only four selected for this honor from the 200 cadets, representing 19 Indiana JROTC programs.
The three Marion cadets selected to be among the Top 10 Honor Graduates from their respective platoon were Adrianna Aleman, Jerit Wigner, and A’Yela Hornaday.
Cadet Aleman was also recognized for her superior performance while serving as the Cadet command sergeant major during the camp. Cadet Josue Martinez received the Commandant’s Medal for his ability to overcome fear while rappelling off the 60-foot tower.
“It is truly quite an accomplishment for our program to have so many cadets recognized by the camp cadre/instructors for these honors,” said Command Sgt. Maj. (retired) Jon Smith, Army Instructor at Marion High School. “It speaks to the strength of our program and the quality of our cadets. In my opinion, all of our cadets who attended camp are exceptional. The Marion cadets were only small percentage of the total cadet population at camp but earned multiple top cadet recognition.”
The mission of JCLC is to provide an environment conducive to practical application of good citizenship and leadership techniques taught during the school year. The cadets faced many physical challenges, including rappelling, obstacles courses, land navigation, and a leadership reaction course. Additionally, they learned water safety and survival techniques.
“Camp was a great experience,” said O’Donnell, who has attended two previous JCLCs. “I was surprised and honored to be selected as the No. 1 cadet from my company.”
The cadets rose at 6 a.m. each morning and conducted a full day of training, then ended with two hours of athletic competition each evening. Their bunks, personal area, and barracks were inspected each day to ensure the highest standards of cleanliness. They learned how to function as part of a team, completing most tasks in squad-sized elements comprised of about a dozen cadets.
Other cadets from Marion High School attending JCLC were Paige Asher, Eric Asher, Ashley White, Jade McKoon, Audrey Dickerson, Kaleb Starr, Angel Morales, Tayler Garriott, and Lucas Riley.