FORT KNOX, Ky., – Cadets of 7th Regiment, Basic Camp (Cadet Initial Entry Training) finally reunited with their loved ones on Family Day at the Patton Museum, Aug. 12 towards the end of their 30 days of Cadet Summer Training (CST).
Family members from all around the country gathered on Family Day to spend some quality times with their Cadets before they watch the Regiment graduate on the following day.
Prior to Cadets’ participation in Cadet Summer Training, they often have their own goals and inspirations for enrolling in the Reserve Officer’s Training Corps (ROTC) program. Some Cadets enrolled to pursue their academic interests. Others were inspired by family stories from past generations.
“I believed it goes back to his grandfather, which he never knew. But he served in World War II,” Karin Miller, mother of Cadet Tyson Miller from Slippery Rock University, said. “He was a Rail-splitter and just through the stories that he heard about him that inspired him to serve his country.”
Family members have been the greatest source of supports and encouragements for the Cadets during their hardships and trainings.
“Give them all the supports you can. It is a great thing that they are doing, serving their country and it is good for them,” Kent Burke, father of Cadet Wyatt Burke from University of North Georgia, said.
However, some families have also experienced some challenges without their sons and daughters back at home.
“He is like the man of the house. Their father passed away 10 years ago. He is the older brother, so leaving his younger brother was hard. So not having him around was challenging,” Karin Miller shared.
Regardless of the adversities, family members have always encouraged their Cadets to follow their dreams; respecting their interests and their decisions to serve the country.
“It is definitely a supportive decision and very respected. Everybody is very thankful for everything that they do. It is hard work but it pays off in the end. We respect everybody’s decision and it is a very tough one, but it is worth it,” Patricia Garrett, girlfriend of Cadet Thomas Parks from University of Richmond, said.