HOLLYWOOD, SC - Baptist Hill Middle High School is proud to announce Angel Simmons-Bocanegra is a 2020 recipient of the Legion of Valor Bronze Cross for Achievement. This award is presented to top Army JROTC (Junior Reserve Officer’s Training Corps) Cadets around the world during their senior year.
Baptist Hill’s JROTC program continues its tradition of excellence; this is the fifth consecutive year a Bobcat cadet has earned this award from the Legion of Valor of the United States of America, Incorporated. Class of 2020 Valedictorian Nykara Heyward received the honor last school year.
Simmons-Bocanegra is one of three Cadets in South Carolina, and the only student from Charleston County School District (CCSD) and the Lowcountry to earn the honor this school year. Additionally, she is one of just 29 of the approximately 315,000 Army JROTC Cadets worldwide to receive the Legion of Valor Bronze Cross.
“I am very elated and equally humbled to receive this award,” Simmons-Bocanegra said. “Representing CCSD adds to this honor. I have always given my best and worked hard to do well. I am grateful to my family, friends, and teachers for supporting me.”
Simmons-Bocanegra will formally receive the award and be promoted to the rank of Cadet Lieutenant Colonel and designated the Bobcat Battalion Commander of the Bobcat Battalion at a later date.
The Legion of Valor Bronze Cross Achievement Award, which was created in 1951, is awarded annually to senior JROTC Cadets. To be considered for this honor, Cadets must apply during their junior year and be in their third year of the Army JROTC. They must also must in the top 25 percent of their overall graduating class and Army JROTC class academically. Finally, Cadets have to demonstrate outstanding military leadership qualities.
Cadet Simmons-Bocanegra was nominated by Lt. Col. John McLeod, Senior Army Instructor of the school’s JROTC program, and endorsed by the principal.
“Angel is one of the most well-rounded scholars and students-athletes here at Baptist Hill,” stated Principal Dale Metzger. “She is a well-respected, high-performing scholar, leader, and is dual credit student with Trident Technical College. She has the complete respect of the faculty and her peers, and possesses great intellect, skills, confidence, and strength of character. I am proud that she is representing our school with this award.”
“Cadet Lieutenant Colonel Simmons-Bocanegra is a mentor to other Cadets and students here at Baptist Hill, and a selfless team player,” added Lt. Col. McLeod. “Her energy and smile are infectious and motivates her peers to do their best. She has faithfully and diligently performed and conducted herself well and exceeds all of my high expectations. She is a ‘go-to’ student and friend that everyone can count on.”
Simmons-Bocanegra plans to attend college and dual major in Chemical Science and Marine Biology with the goal of working in both fields.