The 2023 Ansbach Middle High School Army JROTC Military Ball

Story by Cdt/SSG Antonio Duran-Stanton

Since 1983, Ansbach Middle High School’s (AMHS) JROTC program has hosted the formal event known as the Military Ball. Throughout the ball, cadets will honor and protect formal traditions through toasts, dancing, and more. Leading up to April 5th (the official date), cadets participated in the proper training for these formal ceremonies and traditions by learning the Danube Waltz, proper etiquette, reciting the cadet creed, etc.

The ball was hosted at the extravagant Orangerie in downtown Ansbach. Throughout the night, Mistress of Ceremonies S1 Kalea Russell led the narration. The event was kicked off with the introduction of the staff, S-3 Alexander Pohlman, S-4 Laysha Bobbitt, S-5 Kennedy Lange, and the Battalion Executive Officer Emma Pirner, and the Battalion Commander Collin Robertson and Command Sergeant Major Yannic Miranda.

The colors were posted by Cadets Ryan Rivera-Mojica, Richard Telesco, Jameson Bogard, and led by Cadet Evan Slider. Following the colors, Cadet Ruqayyah Nichols delivered an invocation and Cadet Carter Haynes read a tribute to the flag. The toasts honored everyone in attendance along with the president, the military, and a tribute to fallen soldiers read by Cadet Martin Mundo. Continuing the ball, BC Collin Robertson delivered his prepared speech. “With all the incredible things you’ve accomplished this year, you have all proven yourselves to be outstanding people capable of anything you set your minds to. Now we need to use that. You might be the best at everything you do. Of course you are, you’re from Ansbach. But ask yourself, “Am I lifting others up?” That’s how we become good leaders. That’s how we make the world a better place. Go Cougars.” – Final paragraph of Robertson’s monologue.

(Left to Right) Cdt/1LT Elijah Antonetty, Cdt/1LT Kainoa Gosk, Cdt/CSM Cdt/Yannic Miranda, Cdt/LTC Collin Robertson, and Cdt/CPT Isaac Willis. Seniors prepared to be recognized. Photo Credit: CPL Lauren Moseley

Maintaining tradition, the Grog Ceremony was introduced by Cadet Benjamin Schuck. The ingredients were brought forward by the Grog Guard Cadet Rylan Ayat, with each ingredient presented by different members of the staff. Once the grog was sampled by the BC, the entire battalion, separated by period, sounded off with the cadet creed. For dinner, the main courses for the night were pork, schnitzel, and spaetzle, cooked and served by the Orangerie staff. As per custom, the Battalion cake was cut by the oldest cadet LTC Collin Robertson, and the newest cadet Private Oliolisaga Cormier.

Introduced by XO Emma Pirner, AMHS’s very own principal Mr. David Popielski honored the ball with a personal speech to motivate the young cadets in attendance. After a brief tribute to the parents, the National Awards were presented from various groups such as the Ansbach VFW and American Legion. Next, the 5 senior cadets graduating were recognized, and the colors were retired. The formal ceremony was finished off with the Danube Waltz and informal socializing and dancing.

The Military Ball was truly a night to remember for every cadet, parent, and guest in attendance. Once again, AMHS’s JROTC program has showcased its organization and excellence.

“I really enjoyed seeing the pride of the parents when their son or daughter received their national award.” – MAJ (Ret) Madonna Roberts, Senior Army Instructor

“The entirety of the Military Ball was a huge success due to the hard work of our staff and leadership. I highly doubt the night would be as eventful or memorable if even a fraction of the work done was lacking.” MSG (Ret) Christopher Buchanan, Army Instructor

The Orangerie, located in downtown Ansbach. All festivities took place here. Photo Credit: MAJ (Ret) Madonna L. Roberts

Top Photo Captions

Top left: Oldest and newest cadet cut the battalion cake. (Left to Right) Cdt/LTC Collin Robertson, Cdt/PVT Oliolisaga Cormier. Photo Credit: Cdt.CPL Lauren Moseley

Top right: Ansbach Middle High School principal presents The Retired Enlisted Association award to Cdt/SFC Laysha Bobbitt. (Left to Right) Mr. David Popielski,  Cdt/SFC Laysha Bobbitt. Photo Credit: CPL Lauren Moseley

Bottom left: Proud parents pose with their son, Cdt/MSG Evan Slider, holding his Scottish Rite of Freemasonry JROTC Award. (Left to Right) CW5 Robert Slider, Cdt/MSG Evan Slider and Mrs. Shelley Slider. Photo Credit: CPL Lauren Moseley

Bottom right: Cadets walk under the ceremonial saber guard, (Left to Right) Cdt/SGT Kylah Tuazon and Cdt/CPT Isaac Willis. Photo Credit: MAJ (Ret) Madonna L. Roberts