JROTC experiences SOCSOUTH

As much as Junior ROTC (JROTC) cadets enjoy the day they spend at Homestead Air Reserve Base (HARB), there was a special element this year.

Thursday, April 4, 2019, Major General Antonio Fletcher, Commander of Special Operations Command South (SOCSOUTH), was able to personally address the cadets. He also introduced Master Gunnery Sergeant Jerome Root, the Command’s Senior Enlisted Leader, and Mr. Stephen Simpson of the State Department, the SOCSOUTH Political Advisor.

The fact all three men had once been in JROTC was no doubt a surprise to many of the students. The visit, part of SOCSOUTH’s Military Assistance Program, the cadets with an opportunity to learn about SOCSOUTH’s role,

interact with other organizations, and take on a series of physical fitness tasks.

The line-up included displays and presentations from the Miami-Dade Police Marine Unit, the U.S. Coast Guard’s Maritime Safety and Security Team Miami (MSST), and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. More than 100 total cadets participated with Homestead Senior High Air Force JROTC on April 4th and April 5th was for South Dade Senior High Army JROTC.

“It’s important for these students to be exposed to the opportunities beyond their current environment,” MG Fletcher said. The SOCSOUTH Commander inspired them with more than words though. He had a friendly pull-up challenge and presented a SOCSOUTH coin to Cadet Joe Lynn of Homestead Senior High who managed one pull-up more than he did.

Since SOCSOUTH is a joint command, the cadets were able to speak with soldiers, sailors, marines, and airmen as well as members of the other organizations about their career choices.

JROTC Instructor Master Sergeant (Ret) Mark Margara, is proud of the Homestead Senior High cadets. “The mission of Air Force JROTC is to develop

citizens of character dedicated to serving their nation and community. The goals are to instill values of citizenship, service to the United States, personal

responsibility and sense