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King welcomes new JROTC staff

<p>First Sgt. John Hamilton takes a picture of himself and the cadets during the Martin Luther King Jr. march. Courtesy photo.</p>

First Sgt. John Hamilton takes a picture of himself and the cadets during the Martin Luther King Jr. march. Courtesy photo.

King welcomes 1st Sgt. John Hamilton to their JROTC program. As Hamilton transitions to King, students are excited to see what he can accomplish and how far the program will grow during his journey.

“I would like to develop the following character traits into each cadet and that is ethical values, leadership, effective communication, and physical fitness aspect,” Hamilton said. “I would like the cadets to reap their benefits and their successes by bringing home a drill competition trophy within the next year.”

JROTC instructor Sgt. Jamille Phillips is thankful for the help Hamilton has provided since his start. His plans for the rest of the year will continue to soar as they both keep teaching at King.

“It gives us the opportunity to expand our program," Philliips said. "We have an opportunity to let our kids shoot at a high school, college Olympic level with air rifles."

Sophomore Ethan Moore said he is excited to learn from Hamilton.

"He seems like a very energetic and kind person, and he is really laid back and chill," Moore said. "I also like how he is trying to bond with the students more."

Although Hamilton may be somewhat nervous about joining a new school, he said he feels inspired to be a part of the program. He wants to teach the students valuable morals that will be with them throughout their life.

“As I was transitioning out of the military, I found out that the JROTC program was a program for me and found out that it was needing an instructor," Hamilton said. "So, I thought to myself what better way to give back to the community and to continue to serve."

Hamilton recently retired from being an active-duty soldier for the U.S. Army. The friendship and trust that he built over the years with the soldiers is something he will really miss.

“What I really miss about active duty is the camaraderie and the friendships and the trust you build with each other as soldiers," Hamilton said. "As a soldier, we rely heavily on each other to watch each other's back and to be successful in our career field and you must have trust and confidence and in each other and a friendship."

This will be Phillips last year as an JROTC instructor. He will be missed by many students and teachers, but he has been the instructor of this program for 13 years. 

“I am planning to pastor a church after I retire as an JROTC teacher,” Phillips said.

As Moore receives the news about Phillips retiring, he is sad but will continue his journey in the JROTC program.

“I think it is his time to retire," Moore said. "I'm happy that he's retiring and with him leaving it kind of encourages me to continue on his legacy."


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