Raider competitions teach cadets team-work, basic medical care like splinting a broken bone, and it gets cadets physically fit. The Smyrna High JROTC held its first ever Raider Challenge Dec. 7 at Smyrna High School.

Noah Hoff, Jonathan Beebe, Darya Kropf, Justice Scruggs, Myrissa McFolling, Collin Chase, Brandon Warncke, Caitlin Berchtold, Ashley Taylor, Seth Louth, Colton Humphries, Shanyn Austin, Brice Erickson, Michael Johnson, Russell Stanley, Brian Rhoades, Kathryn Couch, and Jess Carey all tested their skills in PT fitness, rope bridge, first aid and land navigation as part of the Smyrna High ROTC Raider Team. The challenge also included a 5K run.

The Smyrna ROTC placed first in the 5k run, second on rope bridge, and second overall. They were rewarded by getting trophies.

The cadets were all thrilled about their performance.

“We tried our hardest at every activity to get first place and we had a blast” said Cadet Ashley Taylor, a senior in her third year of ROTC.

Schools that participated in the raider competition included Smyrna High School, Dover High School, and two teams from Sussex Tech. Because of the large turnout, Colonel Hetterly had to get other cadets to help set up and help out.

“I knew we would need volunteers to help set up, so I told every cadet if you help out you will receive community service hours” Colonel Hetterly said.

The idea of having the raider competition at Smyrna High School was originally Sergeant John Carlton’s idea. He noticed Smyrna ROTC had never held a raider competition here so he wanted to change that.

“I want to have new experiences for the older cadets that might not be back next year, and leave a great impression of what JROTC will be for new cadets.” Sergeant Carlton said. “It was important for Smyrna ROTC to try something new.”