ROTC color guard leads MLK parade

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The Longview Junior Reserve Officers’ Training Corps’ color guard, the rest of the battalion along with Judson and Foster cadets represented Longview Independent School District and their country as they led the Martin Luther King Jr. parade on Saturday, Jan. 18.

ROTC color guard leads MLK parade

Wed Jan 22, 2020

The Longview Junior Reserve Officers’ Training Corps’ color guard, the rest of the battalion along with Judson and Foster cadets represented Longview Independent School District and their country as they led the Martin Luther King Jr. parade on Saturday, Jan. 18. Two days later they also led the MLK Jr. march that started at the Broughton Recreation Center on Monday, Jan. 20.

“Taking part in events (like this) allows the cadets to learn things about their community and be aware of what others are going through,” said JROTC teacher SGT First Class Jennifer Jackson. “It allows them to give back to the community.”

The Longview High School JROTC program was established on Sept. 7, 1978. From that time, the program has grown and is now frequently seen at Longview ISD events as well as local civic events, as shown with the recent MLK Jr. events. Over 100 students now participate in the LHS JROTC program.

JROTC program teaches the cadets discipline, leadership and how to treat others through drills but it also becomes a second family to many of them according to Jackson. It also allows them to connect with veterans throughout the area such as those at nursing homes through their “Red, White and You.” Another community event that they do aid the homeless of East Texas doing Operation Stand Down.

Every November, JROTC takes part in the “Honor America Night” at LHS. They present the colors at the event which has a flag of each military branch presented. Veterans are honored for their service to our country during “Honor America Night.”

“It’s really about recognizing the veterans and the first responders,” Jackson said.

Their next big event is the Waco Drill Meet on Saturday, Feb. 1, where they will take part with 7 different teams: Female Color Guard, Male Color Guard, Armed Drill Team, Unarmed Drill Team, Male Physical Fitness, Female Physical Fitness and Raider Challenge. The Raider Challenge is a three-mile obstacle course with tire flipping, low crawling under hurdles and a log walk to challenge the competitors while being timed. They will be competing against thirty schools.

For more information about the Lobo ROTC program please visit their new website here

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