Throughout Veterans Day weekend, the Junior Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (JROTC) program at West Henderson will be presenting a variety of ceremonies to numerous crowds, such as students at Rugby Middle and Atkinson Elementary, and the Cherry Springs Retirement community. On Nov. 5, they did a missing man ceremony at Blue Ridge Community College. In this ceremony, an empty table is used to represent members of the armed forces that are no longer with us. JROTC, led by Command Sgt. Maj. David Massullo and Lt. Col. Randy Lytle, will also be posting the colors in their upcoming events.

“A lot more work than it seems goes into these ceremonies,” Cadet Lt. Col. Seth Taylor, senior, said. “We have to plan it out and coordinate with the people at the events. We also have to set up practices and work out all the details.”

Command Sgt. Maj. Andrew Gilbert, senior, shares the same sentiment.

“I’m in charge of conducting and assigning people their roles for missing man and color guard and making sure it gets done. Between finding the right people and training them, it’s a lot of work.”

According to Massullo, cadets will put hours into preparing for these ceremonies.

“The good thing is that we have experienced cadets who already know what they’re doing and can help teach the new cadets,” Massullo said. “And then, the new cadets can train others next year, and we’ll have continuity in the program.”

Veterans Day ceremonies are a regular part of West’s JROTC program, and the cadets within the program take this responsibility very seriously.

“For me, Veterans Day means showing appreciation to people that don’t get appreciated as much as they should,” Taylor said. “I’m proud to be commemorating veterans.”

By: Sarah Monoson, Feature Writer

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