November 10, 2018 was more than just a huge college football showdown between #4 ranked University of California-Davis (UC-Davis) and the #5 ranked Eastern Washington University (EWU), it was also the university’s annual Military Appreciation Day game. As part of the day’s festivities Cadets from the EWU Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC) Fighting Eagles Battalion were invited to the VIP alumni area before the game. The University President Dr. Mary Cullinan met with the Cadets and took pictures with them before they departed to support pre-game activities.
From left: Professor of Military Science, Lieutenant Colonel Jonathan Stafford, Samantha Knight, Megan Anderson, Dr. Mary Cullinan, Megan Baker, Cheyenne Sweet, and Melinda Leen.
As part of the pre-game activities Cadets, active duty military personnel, and veterans from the local community stretched an oversized American flag across Roos Field. The EWU ROTC Cadets had been practicing all week to execute the pre-game show despite the cold weather that has arrived in Eastern Washington this week. The practice paid off as both the Color Guard and the flag team performed flawlessly during the event.
EWU ROTC Cadets pose for a group photo before executing the pre-game show as part of Military Appreciation Day activities on November 10, 2018 at Eastern Washington University.
EWU ROTC Cadets Samantha Knight, Megan Anderson, Megan Baker, Cheyenne Sweet, and Melinda Leen prepare to conduct Color Guard duties. (Photo from Mr. Jerry Mellick)
Cadet Commanding Officer Haley Bent (center) poses with the EWU Color Guard. (Photo by Mr. Jerry Mellick)
EWU ROTC Cadets prepare to unfurl a large American flag as part of pre-game activities.
EWU ROTC Color Guard prepared to march on to Roos Field. (Photo by Mr. Jerry Mellick)
The EWU ROTC Color Guard and Cadets present flags during the singing of the National Anthem. (Photo by Mr. Rob Riedel)
Cadets Samantha Knight, Megan Anderson, Megan Baker, Cheyenne Sweet, and Melinda Leen execute Color Guard duties before the November 10, 2018 home football game. (Photo by Mr. Rob Riedel)
Besides conducting pre-game activities, the EWU ROTC battalion also executed its cannon crew duties during the game.
EWU ROTC Cadets pose with the battalion’s historic World War II pack howitzer. (Photo by Mr. Rob Riedel)
EWU mascot, Swoop made time to visit with the cannon crew. (Photo by Mr. Rob Riedel)
After every home team touchdown the cannon crew fires the cannon much to the jubilation of the home crowd.
Cadet Jazmin Castrejon fires the historic pack howitzer after a touchdown.
At halftime a contracting ceremony was held on the 50-yard line. Cadets Michael Beier and Kylie Crooks recited the Oath of Enlistment given to them by Lieutenant Colonel Jonathan Stafford, the Professor of Military Science and Department Chair for the EWU ROTC battalion.
Michael Beier (left) and Kylie Crooks (right) take Oath of Enlistment from Lieutenant Colonel Jonathan Stafford. (Photo by Mr. Rob Riedel)
The first Oath of Enlistment was developed during the Revolutionary War when the Continental Congress established different oaths for the enlisted men and officers of the Continental Army. The first Oath of Enlistment under the Constitution was approved by an Act of Congress on September 29, 1789. It applied to all commissioned officers, noncommissioned officers, and enlisted Soldiers in the United States military.
EWU ROTC Cadets take the Oath of Enlistment at halftime of the EWU Military Appreciation Day game. (Photo by Mr. Rob Riedel)
The oath would receive minor modifications during the 1800’s, but the current oath recited by the contracting Cadets has remained unchanged since 1959. The current Oath of Enlistment reads:
“I, _____, do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; and that I will obey the orders of the President of the United States and the orders of the officers appointed over me, according to regulations and the Uniform Code of Military Justice. So help me God.”
By contracting the Cadets can now activate scholarship benefits, receive a monthly monetary stipend, attend advanced training, and other opportunities to help them towards their goal of becoming a US Army officer after graduating from EWU.
EWU ROTC Cadets Michael Beier (left) and Kylie Crooks (right) repeat the Oath of Enlistment into the microphone. (Photo by Mr. Rob Riedel)
After the halftime contracting ceremony the Fighting Eagle Cadets would fire the cannon 5 more times after an offensive barrage of touchdowns from the home team.
Newly contracted Cadet, Kylie Crooks fires the historic pack howitzer after a 2nd half touchdown.
The EWU football team would ultimately defeat UC-Davis by a score of 59-17, which capped off a memorable Military Appreciation Day for everyone involved. For anyone wanting to see more pictures from the game, EWU ROTC alumni, Mr. Jerry Mellick has his photos posted at this link.
From all the Cadre at the EWU ROTC battalion we hope everyone has a great Veterans Day weekend.
Go ROTC! Go Eags!