Cadet Command turns 25

Sunday, May 01, 2011

U.S. Army Cadet Command will celebrate its silver anniversary on June 3 at Fort Knox, Ky., with a celebration, dedication and memoriam, thereby completing the command’s recent move from Fort Monroe, Va., to this Kentucky post.

All Army ROTC graduates and their families are invited by the command to join in the celebration.

The day’s events will include the opening and a reception for the new Cadet Command headquarters, and the dedication of Cadet Park on historic Brooks Field, directly across from the new headquarters.

June 3 also marks 95 years since the U.S. Congress established the U.S. Army Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC).

As the ROTC mission grew, the Army established Cadet Command on May 2, 1986.

Army ROTC is the largest officer-producing organization within the American military, having commissioned more than half a million second lieutenants since its inception.

Currently, the Army has ROTC programs at 273 colleges and universities across the nation. Cadet Command also oversees Junior Army ROTC programs in high schools throughout the country.

Over the last 25 years, Cadet Command has achieved several milestones. Among them, this past November, U.S. Army Cadet Command uncased its colors at Fort Knox.

The new Cadet Park on Brooks Field will honor all ROTC graduates who died while serving our nation.

"As we look forward to the command’s future, symbolized by the ribbon-cutting of the new headquarters, we must also pause to honor the past," Maj. Gen. Mark McDonald, commander of U.S. Army Cadet Command, said.

Adding, "Our ceremony would not be complete without remembering those ROTC graduates who died while serving our nation.

"Therefore, we are hopeful that families and friends of ROTC graduates who died while serving our country will join us for the dedication on June 3," McDonald added. "Cadet Park honors all ROTC officers who died while serving since World War I to the present day."

Families and friends interested in attending the ceremonies will incur their own travel and lodging expenses.

"Cadet Command, through precision recruiting, rigorous leader development and focused retention, commissions the future Army officer leadership for service to the Army and nation; in addition, motivates young people through caring leadership and positive influence to be better citizens for life-long service to community," a command spokesman said.