Johnson JROTC celebrates success and tradition

The Johnson High School JROTC program has quickly risen to success since the school opened its doors in the fall of 2008. The following are two stories regarding the program's dedication to outstanding performance and tradition. 

Johnson JROTC goes to Army Drill Nationals

On April 1, more than 90 of the best Army JROTC Drill Teams from all over the country competed in Louisville, Kentucky at the annual Army National Drill Championship. Among the Drill Teams was Johnson High School JROTC’s Liberty Guard Armed Drill Team and Johnson First Legion Unarmed Drill Team. Both Drill teams competed in all four events. These events are Regulation, Inspection, Exhibition, and Color Guard. Regulation is just plain Drill and Ceremony. Inspection is where a judge grades your team based off Knowledge and how well you put your Uniform together. Exhibition is where the Drill team performs their signature routine. Unarmed teams create beats with their hands and feet, while armed drill teams throw and tap rifles. Each team has a Color Guard. During a Color Guard routine, the colors are presented to the head judge and the team performs a regulation routine with the colors. A Color Guard consists of only four cadets.

The Liberty Guard Armed Drill Team placed 19th overall out of approximately 49 other Armed Drill Teams. The Drill Team placed 6th in Regulation, 25th in Inspection, 26th in Exhibition, and 20th in Color Guard. “It felt like a more professional competition and obviously at a higher level,” said C/Maj Joshua Ciotti, Color Guard Commander and 2nd Squad leader for the Armed Drill Team.

The Johnson First Legion Unarmed Drill Team placed 6th overall, also out of over 41 Unarmed Drill Teams. The Drill Team placed 24th in Regulation, 6th in Inspection, 5th in Exhibition, and 5th in Color Guard. “It felt like I was competing at fifth brigade all over again.” stated Grace Pierce, a freshman in the Unarmed Drill team.

Both teams did an outstanding job at Kentucky and believed that it was a great experience.

Why we Retire the Flag

Flag Retirement started because of the 19th National Convention of The American Legion in New York City, New York, September 20-23,1937. We retire the flag as a sign of great respect for our nation. Many people may not think about how the flags age but when they become worn down to the point they can’t be properly displayed, it is time to give them a proper send off. It is an American tradition to take the flags that have served for years and have shown the pride and honor that those in our armed forces and those who supported them have shown for hundreds of years. People have died and are risking life day by day in order to protect what our flag stands for.

The Jaguar Battalion has always respected those who have been a part or have supported the armed forces. This ceremony was a chance to preserve our great nation’s traditions and also to show the loyalty of the citizens. Our battalion believes in Honor, Loyalty, Selfless service and the other army values. We do what is necessary to make sure that we uphold the honor of our military personnel. The beginning of the ceremony started with the national anthem performed on the bugle by Clifton Sitterle after the honor guard raised the flag to be retired. The flag was then lowered and carried to be inspected by C/Maj Kaley Smith. The flag was then cut into separate pieces starting with the blue field of stars that represented the union and then the stripes. After that each piece cut was placed into the fire. Putting each individual piece in the fire is an honorable way to retire our nation’s colors.

“I felt a sense of patriotic pride as I held the flag while it was being retired. It was an honor being apart of the honor guard,” said C/SGM Phillip De Los Santos.

The Johnson JROTC program is proud to have hosted their second flag retirement ceremony and it was an experience that all cadets should never forget.


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L to R, Mary Stewart, Alexandra Fox, Miranda Sandoval, Elizabeth Misnick 5th place Female Color Guard

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Alexandria Fox, Mary Stewart, Grace Pierce, Christine Young, Maranda Sandoval, Raymond Lu, Elizabeth Misnick; 5th place Unarmed Exibition

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Johnson First Legion; Unarmed Drill team

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Liberty Guard; Armed Drill Team

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Cadets place pieces of the flag into the flyer.

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The worn down flag is brought down by the cadets.

Posted on 04/10/2017