FORT KNOX, Ky. (April 23, 2016) -- More than 100 local Junior Reserve Officers' Training Corps (JROTC) Cadets from local programs came out to celebrate the 100th Anniversary of JROTC by taking part in a 5K run marking the occasion.
More than 35,000 participated worldwide as the event was coordinated with programs at schools across the globe in more than 1,000 locations, with 1,500 participating high schools and 153 colleges in 48 states and nine countries -- all starting at the same time -- in an attempt to set a new Guinness World record.
Command Sgt. Maj. Gabriel Arnold, Cadet Command command sergeant major, got the runners fired up before they headed out on the celebratory run with a few words of encouragement.
"Isn't this exciting? We're trying to set a new record for the most runners across the U.S. and get in the Guinness Book of World Records!" he said. "It's also to celebrate 100 years of Junior ROTC, which is a fantastic program. The metrics behind it are the proof in the pudding -- higher graduation rates, higher grade point averages, instilling in young people the propensity to serve, not just in the military but in their community, and we're building future leaders for this great country."
And with that, the runners were off, as were the thousands of others across the globe.
It was a great day for the run and the spirit of competition, said Daniel Herrada, from North Vernon High School. He finished first along with Delvin White, also from North Vernon. Since it was a fun run there was no official winner, but the friends and Cadets joked about who came in first.
While the event did fall short of setting the world record, it was still easily one of the largest military run events ever to take place.