There’s a New Cadet Commander at Alvirne

June 9, 2017


by Len Lathrop

While the command change seems simple, when you consider what the speakers said, their speeches put many things into prospective from the past year and into the next school year.

In the Steckevicz gymnasium, the cadets of Alvirne JROTC watched and listened as the guidons, small flags for marking or signaling, were passed.  This is a tradition that dates back centuries and now is a standard in today’s military.

In military organizations, the practice of carrying colors, standards or guidons, both to act as a rallying point for troops and to mark the location of the commander, is thought to have originated in ancient Egypt some 5,000 years ago.  The Roman Empire also made battle standards a part of their vast armies.  It was formalized in the armies of Europe in the High Middle Ages, with standards being emblazoned with the commander’s coat of arms.

Serving as narrator was Cadet Lt. Colonel Ben Desrochers, who explained to the assembled cadets and parents attending the ceremony, that First Cadet Lt. Colonel Jess Maucieri will relinquish command and cadet Jillian Robicheau will take command of the Logistics squadron.   Following that Cadet Lt. Colonel Isabelle Russell will hand the command of the operations squadron to Cadet Nicholas Spargo.

After brief remarks, Lt. Cadet Colonel Noah Bellomo relinquished command of the Alvirne Cadet Group to Cadet Catie Donahue under the watchful eye of Lt. Colonel Christian Cheetham serving as presiding officer.

Final speech as Group Commander by Noah Bellomo

“Going into the 2016-2017 school year the senior staff knew that this year would not only be a busy year but a challenging one.  We knew that we were here to set precedents and establish standards that we hope will live on.  Together we learned how to accomplish our goals and strengthen our program to be its best.  This year has been a journey with unexpected twists and turns, ups and downs.  However these are the very things that help us learn and grow to become better students, leaders and citizens…

“As we look back on the school year we remember the memories, the lessons and the friendships that we made.  This was all made possible by the hard work of you and your classmates; however I would like to give my sincerest thank you to my entire senior staff for the countless hours they put into to every event and activity we planned this year.  I would like to give a special thanks to LT Col Cheetham for being a teacher, a mentor, but, more importantly, a role model.  Without the hard work of these people it would be difficult accomplish many of our goals.  I would like to offer my thanks for a great year, your support and unwavering dedication to this program, which is like a family to so many of us.  As we pass command to the class of 2018 I wish them the best of luck in their endeavors and continuing the work of the class of 2017!  Thank you!”

Speech by incoming G.C. Catie Donahue

“I am extremely grateful to stand in front of all of you today.  This year’s senior staff has done a tremendous job in running the program and have continuously gone above and beyond what is asked of them, and I can only aspire to experience that same level of commitment from my fellow peers.  A commitment that I am confident we can achieve.

It is my goal for the upcoming school year to adapt and expand upon all the new changes that were made to the organization this year as well as to implement new changes and ideas that will benefit the program and all of you.  These new changes are a topic of excitement and it is one of my top priorities to ensure that they will lead to a fun and successful school year as individual cadets.

I am eager to take on this responsibility as your next group commander and although I know I have some big shoes to fill, with the help of my senior staff, I am more motivated than ever to see this program reach its fullest potential.  Each and every one of you will play a key role in the growth of the program, and it will be because of your efforts that we will reach the success we strive for.

Thank you for the hard work and dedication you all have given and will continue to give.  I cannot wait to see what next year brings.”