The Union County High School JROTC Yellow Jacket Battalion held its annual awards day ceremony on April 24 to recognize cadets for outstanding performance throughout the year.
Parents who have volunteered to help with various battalion events were recognized first. Certificates were presented by the Battalion Commander C/LTC Tommy McKelvey to Mrs. Paula Wright, Mr. Richard McKelvey, Mrs. Mitzi McKelvey, Mr. Eddie Edwards, Mrs. Lynn Edwards, Mrs. Lacretia McClurkin Peake, Mr. Randall Burns, Mrs. Deanna Burns, Mrs. Jennifer Belue, Mr. Andy Fowler, Mrs. Pam Fowler, Mrs. Kerryann Hawkins, Mrs. Sandra Sigmon, and Mrs. Tonya Bailey
Mr. Henry Turner presented Pirelli Big Buck t-shirts to cadets who participated in the color guard at the Grand National Cross Country Championships. Receiving the t-shirts were TC/LTC Tommy McKelvey, C/MSG Meagan Hames, C/SFC Hannah Hartley, C/1LT Avery Hyatt, C/FSG Michael Leigh, C/SFC Jasmine Smith, C/CPL Kayleigh Duckett, C/2LT Kayce Edwards, C/ PFC Andre Jeter, C/CPL Satardra Hall, and C/Dalton Johnson.
C/CPL Satardra Hall was the Outstanding Color Guard member.
C/PFC Andre Jeter was the Outstanding Drill Team member.
C/PVT William Sherfield was the Best Drill Cadet.
C/SFC Mitchell Ward was the Outstanding Rifle Team member.
Physical Fitness Awards were presented to the top five male and female cadets in Cadet Challenge. C/SSG Ethan Pendleton, C/CPL Shameek White, C/CPL Quandarius Neal, C/PVT Ronnie Woodruff and C/FSG Lucas Kelley were the top male cadets. C/ LTC Tommy McKelvey, C/MSG Meagan Hames, C/MAJ Lindsey Palmer, C/CPL Satardra Hall, and C/ CPL Nicole Fowler were the top female cadets. As the number one finishers, Ethan and Tommy will have their names engraved on a plaque in the JROTC hallway.
C/SFC Jasmine Smith was the Outstanding Cadet Non-Commissioned Officer. C/MAJ Lindsay Palmer was the Outstanding Cadet Officer.
SFC(R) Franklin McCullough presented the Army Instructor Leadership Development Ribbon to C/FSG Georgia Teal, C/CPL Kayleigh Duckett, C/CPL Denise Cipriano, C/CPL Briana Spencer,C/CPL Nicole Fowler, C/CPL Satardra Hall, C/CPL Brandon Copeland, C/CPL Shameek White, C/CPL lea Kershaw, C/CPL Taylor Shope, C/CPL Porsha Riley, C/CPL Tyrin Briggs, C/CPL Quandarius Neal, C/CPL Hailey Sherbert, C/CPL Cathryn Young, C/PFC Andre Jeter, C/PFC Dalton Johnson, C/PFC Darius Washington, C/PFC Jesse Belue, C/PFC Nicholas Garrison, C/PFC Rashawn Washington, C/PFC Shemar Moore, and C/PVT Ronnie Woodruff.
Colonel (R) John Odell presented the Senior Army Instructor Leadership Development Ribbon to C/CPL Tatiana Ferguson, C/SSG Justin Dudley, C/SGT Alana Wright, C/SSG Jonathan Bailey, C/SGT Cole Sigmon, and C/CPL Devin Ivey
C/1LT Kaelyn Thomas received the Army Instructor Award. C/MSG Victoria Powers received the Senior Army Instructor Award
The Military Service Award was presented to C/FSG Lucas Kelly.
The US Army Recruiting Award for JROTC was presented by SFC Barker to C/CPT Myia McClurkin.
C/MAJ Lindsey Palmer won the JROTC Essay Contest.
The Board of Education and Trustees award was presented to C/CPT Michael Stewart.
Mr. Floyd Lyles, Principal of Union County High School, presented the following awards: Academic Excellence to (LET 4) C/MAJ Dylan McNeace, (LET 3) C/SFC Mitchell Ward, (LET 2) C/ SSG Detric Means, and (LET 1) C/CPL Satardra Hall. C/CPT Taylor Cooper, who had the highest grades in JROTC over a four-year period, received the District Award for Academic Excellence.
The West Point Association Leadership Award was presented to C/1LT Avery Hyatt, who may now attend the West Point Strong Leader Academy this summer.
C/1LT Ollie Burns received the Military Officers Association of America Award.
Mrs. Gloria Northern and Mrs. Virginia Walker presented The American Legion Post 22 Auxiliary Award for Military Excellence to C/MSG Meagan Hames and the American Legion Post 22 Auxiliary Award for Scholastic Excellence to C/SFC Hannah Hartley.
Col. (Retired) Bill Goodwin and Lt. Col. (Retired) Al Black presented the American Legion Post 22 Award for Military Excellence presented to C/ SSG Ethan Pendleton and the American Legion Post 22 Award for Scholastic Excellence to C/FSG Michael Leigh.
The Legionnaires also presented a new award for the first time — an American Legion $1,000 Scholarship reserved for a JROTC graduating senior. C/2LT Kelsey Ledford won the scholarship.
Mr. Freddie Thompson presented the National Sojourner’s Award to C/2LT Kayce Edwards, the Military Order of World Wars Award to C/1LT Ollie Burns, and the Scottish Rite of Freemasonry Award to C/CPT Taylor Cooper.
Mrs. Packy Whitener presented the Daughters of the American Revolution Award to C/2LT Kelsey Ledford.
The Sons of the American Revolution Award was presented to C/MAJ Dylan McNeace.
Department of the Army Superior Cadet Awards were presented by SFC (R) Franklin McCullough to: LET 1 — C/CPL Nicole Fowler, LET 2 — C/FSG Michael Leigh, LET 3 — C/ MSG Andrew McGee, and LET 4-C/LTC Tommy McKelvey.
At the conclusion of the ceremony Cadet Ollie Burns was promoted to the rank of Cadet Lieutenant Colonel by her parents, Randall and Deanna Burns. Following her promotion, C/LTC Burns assumed command of the battalion from the outgoing commander C/LTC Tommy McKelvey.