Rough Rider Battalion holds 53rd Annual Military Ball

JROTC cadets and their guests eat dinner.

By Hailey Massey | Assistant Editor |

Gowns and Class A jackets swirled around the dance floor at the 53rd annual Military Ball, which was held on Jan. 12 at the Fort Sam Houston Community Center.

The ball, consisting of a formal and nonformal part, included a ceremonial toast to fallen service members, dinner, and a speech given by guest speaker Mills Rodgers; retired NCO and mental health specialist as well as Roosevelt’s Achieve teacher. After dinner, the informal part of the ball began, bringing the Battalion together as they celebrated the class of 2019, presented the sweetheart and beaus and danced.

Battalion Sweetheart and Beau, Senior Joel Lopez and Junior Katya Rodriguez have the first dance.

“I knew we had a JROTC program that accomplished a lot of great things,” Achieve teacher Mills Rodgers said in his speech, “But this is outstanding. The seamlessness of the ball shows the level of leadership each and every one of you have. I’m honored to be here.”

For many cadets, this was a bittersweet experience because it was their last Military Ball.

“ I thought I would be really sad after it was all over but that wasn’t the case at all, I was happy to spend the night dancing and being myself with my friends and with the people that make up the program that I love,” senior Juliana Romero said.  “ I brought my mom as my date because I wanted to show her my second family and that all the work I’ve put into the last three years wasn’t for nothing.”