Cadets of the Michigan City High School (MCHS) Marine Corps Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps (MCJROTC) earned numerous awards at a military drill competition held at the University of Illinois at Chicago. The cadet Wolves earned first place in Armed Squad and the Personnel Inspection, second in Unarmed Platoon and third in Color Guard. 12 schools competed in the meet, with MCHS finishing third over-all. The units earning awards were commanded by (respectively) Cadet First Lieutenant Pauline Lutton, Cadet Captain Arturo Moreno (Inspection and Unarmed Platoon), and Cadet First Sergeant Michael Livengood. Livengood also finished third and Cadet Staff Sergeant Christen Lepage finished ninth out of 300 cadets in individual competition.
“This was a very competitive meet,” said Senior Marine Instructor Major Tom McGrath. “With perennial powerhouses like East Aurora and Zion Benton in the mix, our cadets did very well to place the way they did.” East Aurora is the largest JROTC in the world, with 700 cadets in their program. Zion Benton has so many cadets that they had two separate teams at the meet.
Master Sergeant Jeff Benak, the Marine Instructor, also commented on the cadet Wolves stepping up to meet the tough level of competition. “In the past, we would not be able to come near schools like East Aurora and Zion Benton. Now, we are beating them in certain categories. It shows the dedication of our kids to improve and the confidence they have to go against the best.”
The cadets will stay busy through December, supporting school events like providing the Color Guards for home basketball games and supporting the community with events like Wreaths Across America and Bell Ringing for the Salvation Army. The cadets next drill meet will be at East Aurora High School in Illinois on January 14, 2017.