The first time I watched a video about Boys State, I was delighted to see that hundreds of Staters were marching in columns and files. It didn’t surprise me, as I knew that the program was run by the American Legion. What really excited me was being able to put my marching skills in action.
A bit of background about me – I’m a Cadet Captain in Air Force Junior ROTC, and I’ve been participating in drill teams and color guards for years. As such, marching and performing close-order drill movements has become muscle memory for me. Swinging my arms six inches to the front and three to the rear is a habit that’s been hard to break – not that I’m complaining.
However, I also need to remember that not everybody is at an advanced skill level. This was especially obvious during the first march to McCain Auditorium.
“So far, I’ve liked marching,” said Jake Nespor of the City of Newman, Patton County. “But it could have been a little more organized. Some people could look out for the roads, to keep in mind.“ He has no marching experience, but has attempted, along with hundreds of other Staters, to keep in step and shout jodies, or chants, for the first time.
While today’s marching may seem strict, it doesn’t seem like much compared to what is done by JROTC. Even then, I still hope that we can all march as a team by the end of the week.