Recently, the West Gadsden Panther Battalion was selected as Gov. Rick Scott's personal escorts
for he and his guest dignitaries at the 2011 Florida Governor's Inauguration at the State Capitol.
West Gadsden High School was the only Junior Reserve Officer's Training Corps Unit selected for this honor, while Florida A&M University represented all senior units.
West Gadsden Cadets offered VIP treatment to the Governor and his distinguished colleagues.
Cadet Master Sergeant - C/MSG LaShavente Lightfoot stated that, "Despite the fact that it was hard work, meeting and greeting was very exciting. Encountering all of those wonderful people was something that I really loved. As they walked in, we all greeted the officials with a warm smile and handshake."
Prior to the event, the West Gadsden JROTC cadets learned the importance of how the service component is key in their development as productive citizens. Cadet Command refers to it as service learning.
C/MSG Lightfoot continued to comment that, "The Governor's Inauguration was very important to me because not many people get a chance to attend something that special. I was chosen to attend the inauguration by my very own Army instructors, which made me feel proud."
When asked to describe the event, Cadet Sergeant Major C/SGM Monica Perez stated that, "there were many parts I enjoyed such as the aircraft, meeting and greeting, and being surrounded by so many important people."
Finally, Cadet First Sergeant C/1SG Francisco Cantero said that, "I enjoyed the aircraft because they flew directly above our heads. The 21-gun salute was very special. The aircraft were very loud, and something I never experienced before, but now I have. What a pivotal moment it was."