BC ROTC Honors Fallen Soldiers
Published: Sunday, September 23, 2012
Updated: Wednesday, January 9, 2013 18:01
On Friday, Sept. 21, at 6:45 a.m., the Forty Bravo Company cadets stood in dignified silence while the sun crept up the horizon, slowly filling Burns Lawn with the light of daybreak. The ceremony, held each year on the third Friday of September to recognize the POW (prisoner of war) and MIA (missing in action) soldiers who fought for our country, commemorates the sacrifices of these men and women in accordance with national POW/MIA soldier day.
Rev. Paul McNellis, S.J., a veteran of the Vietnam War, initiated this year’s ceremony with a short, heartfelt prayer, requesting that all observers remember those in arms who never come home. After the prayer, one of the officers of the cadet company came forward and revealed a startling statistic: Over 140,000 American soldiers are MIA. The officer then humanized this statistic with a detailed account of a POW/MIA soldier named Zambrini.
“[The ceremony] is a reminder of our tradition, where we come from,” said Cadet Company Commander Wes Lowenfeld. “The army is one big family, and the POW/MIA ceremony is a reminder of how big that family is and how many amazing things it has done.”
The morning was not reserved solely for remembrance. After the ceremony, the company assembled once again, this time to recognize the many accomplishments of the cadets. Cadets earned awards for academics, personal training, ROTC extracurricular achievement, and, for a select few, awards for LDAC (Leadership Development and Assessment Course).
Among the LDAC Award recipients, Cadet Kathryne Bauchspies, A&S ’13, earned special recognition for completing her LDAC first in her regiment.
Lt. Col. Blaise Gallahue, chair of the department of military science at Northeastern University who presided over the award ceremony, commented on the importance of recognition.
“It means a lot to me to be able to recognize [the cadets] because I want the cadets to feel like all the work they’re doing means something to somebody … because it really does mean something to somebody.”