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Cherokee NJROTC cadets learn about military life, history during trip to Charleston

HEATHER WHITT • Nov 24, 2018 at 1:08 PM

ROGERSVILLE — Twenty-six Cherokee High School NJROTC students toured Charleston’s Patriots Point and The Citadel on November 16-17.

The trip started with a visit to The Citadel, a four-year public military college established in 1842.

Graduates of The Citadel are not required to serve in the military; however, about 35 percent of each class commission as military officers.

Cadets enjoyed a guided tour by Taylor, a former Citadel cadet who graduated last year.

“The Citadel was a fantastic experience,” said Cadet Commander Heather Whitt. “We were toured around its beautiful campus, and, during the tour, we were able to witness an everyday cadet’s life as they were milling about the campus, getting ready for their fall break.”

Afterward, cadets visited Fort Moultrie, which has been restored to portray the major periods of its history. A visitor to the fort moves steadily back in time from the World War II Harbor Entrance Control Post to the site of the Palmetto-log fort of 1776. The cadets especially enjoyed the many climbs and outlooks the fort had to offer.

On Saturday, cadets visited Patriots Point, a hands-on history and marine science experience featuring the USS Yorktown, USS Laffey (DD-724), USS Clamagore (SS-343), and the Congressional Medal of Honor Museum onboard the USS Yorktown.

The Cherokee NJROTC students gained experience and knowledge in astronomy, aviation, history, oceanography, math and technology. 

Prior to leaving Patriots Point, the cadets enjoyed the Vietnam Experience Exhibit.

This exhibit brings the history of the Vietnam War to life through holograms in an exciting 3-D production. The exhibit is approximately 2 1/2 acres set in a “Brown Water Navy” support base and a U.S. Marine Corps artillery fire base during the Tet Offensive and the Battle of Khe Sanh in 1968.

The Vietnam Experience Exhibit also serves as a place for the two million Vietnam veterans in the United States to reflect and reconnect with their experiences during their years of service. Cadet Senior Chief Christopher Seals added his remarks on the exhibit: “It was a very surreal experience. They had sounds going off to simulate an actual battlefield. It was almost as if we were soldiers in Vietnam.”

The following cadets attended this trip: Skylar Altman, Travis Baxley, Kendall Chamberlain, Julie DeCaro, Zachery Eisenhuth, Jaden Gillin, Shannah Gray, Emily Harris, Nicholas Hirt, Gabriel Lyons, Jewel MacGregor, Austin Manning, Elizabeth Massengill, Audrie McCann, Douglas Napier, Cynthia Pierce, Jessica Rawlings, Kameron Sauceman, Christopher Seals, Sara Sirkin, Maisie Smith, Zachary Strauss, Nick Swatzell, Grace Templeton, Alonte Villa and Heather Whitt.

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