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SMA JROTC cadets during a formal inspection on Dec. 2. PHOTO via SAN MARCOS BAPTIST ACADEMY

SUBMITTED REPORT

SMA senior Shane Boyer during a JROTC formal inspection on Dec. 2. PHOTO via SAN MARCOS BAPTIST ACADEMY

San Marcos Academy’s JROTC Bear Battalion was named an “JROTC Honor Unit with Distinction,” which is awarded to only about 10 percent of all JROTC units in the nation in any given year.

The designation, awarded for the battalion’s performance during its Dec. 2 annual formal inspection, enables the cadets to wear a gold star on their uniforms for the next three years as evidence of their achievement.

During their day-long inspection, the cadets had a military review, cadet staff briefing, color guard evaluation, in-ranks inspection of the two companies, and testing of curriculum knowledge. At the out-brief, the visiting inspectors from the 5th Brigade U.S. Army Cadet Command announced the Battalion had scored 587 out of 600 points, much more than the score needed for the gold star award.

“First Sergeant Mark Moore and I are extremely proud of all of the young men and women in the Bear Battalion,” said Senior Army Instructor LTC Larry Revell. “They have all worked very hard since their last inspection, and especially this year, to earn the Gold Star. This accomplishment would not have occurred without the total support and commitment of the San Marcos Academy family, from our building custodian all the way to the principal and Academy President. Together our efforts exemplified the Bear Battalion motto: ‘One Team, One Goal, One Result.’”

A total of 79 cadets — one-third of all SMA high school students — are part of the volunteer Bear Battalion unit. The battalion is currently led by cadet commander Daniel Sexton, who is a senior from Buda, and his executive officer, Alec Patton, who is a senior from San Marcos. Company commanders are Shane Boyer and Tiara Hansen, both of whom are seniors from San Marcos.

“Our JROTC program is a key component of the leadership training we offer at San Marcos Academy,” said SMA President John Garrison. “The Gold Star recognition signifies that our Corps of Cadets is one of the best units we have had in recent memory. I know how hard the students worked for this recognition and I am proud of what they have accomplished under the direction of LTC Larry Revell and 1SG Mark Moore who are both exemplary leaders in their own right.”

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