by E.I. Hillin
Mustang High School JROTC cadets bring the Ultimate Mustang Showdown to town. The first ever JROTC drill meet to happen in Mustang was on Saturday. Eleven schools traveled to the event which took place at various locations across the high school campus, 801 S. Snyder Drive.
JROTC Battalion Commander, Emily Young, said holding a drill meet at Mustang has been an aspiration of hers since she started JROTC four years ago.
“It’s never happened in our 12 years of being a program,” she said. “That was one of my goals.”
Young, 18, said the event was completely coordinated by the JROTC cadets. The Ultimate Mustang Showdown gives local schools the opportunity to go to another drill meet without having to leave the state. Some meets require schools to travel as far as Texas.
“It’s very nice for Oklahoma City to have another local event,” she said.
There was a total of eight events to compete in at the meet. MHS JROTC has 140 cadets and it took all hands on deck to make the Ultimate Mustang Showdown a reality.
On Saturday morning, family members of cadet Peyton Mott, watched from the bleachers as she competed with her battalion in the unarmed competition. Mott’s mother, Kellie Perkins, said she was glad to have a competition close to home.
Perkins said JROTC has made a lasting and positive impact on Mott.
“She’s had a lot more structure and discipline,” Perkins said. “This is her life and what she wants.”
Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps or JROTC is a four-year leadership program with military values at the core. Each year cadets learn new curriculum covering a wide variety of skills, from how to build a resume to knowledge of flags. Another component of the organization is the drill competitions.
The drill meet wasn’t the only new thing brought to the MHS JROTC this year. The organization joined in to participate in homecoming as well as senior night. As a MHS senior, Young said she hopes the younger cadets will take what her class legacy gave them and add to it.
“I hope they are able to take what we’ve done and transform it into something of their own,” she said.