By Khrysten Darm (Army South Public Affairs)April 10, 2009
(FORT SAM HOUSTON, Texas) - Maj. Gen. Keith Huber, commander of U. S. Army South, presented certificates of achievement to 15 Robert G. Cole High School students for their participation in designing an Army South fiesta medal March 31.
"I am very proud of you," Huber said to the students. "I'm honored to be here, I stand in awe as to your intellect, to your vision, your ability to express that through your artwork and I thank you for participating in this selection and giving us the opportunity to recognize you and your families."
In the hopes of starting a new tradition for Army South and Cole High School, Lt. Col. Troy Ramirez, Information Operations deputy director for Army South, came up with the idea to have the students create a design that represents the history and spirit of Army South during Fiesta San Antonio 2009.
Fifty-five students submitted designs, which were pared down to the selected 15. The top 15 designs were sent to Army South for final judging where the winning design was determined.
"Of the original 55 entries submitted, these final 15 designs captured the essence of U.S. Army South and the spirit of Fiesta perfectly," said Ramirez. "Though only one design was chosen for minting, we were left awestruck and enriched by your talents, insight, and obvious potential that each here has demonstrated."
Cole High School sophomore Anthony Hernandez-Camacho drew the winning design. In addition to receiving a certificate of achievement, Hernandez-Camacho also received the first Army South Fiesta medal.
To come up with his winning design, Hernandez-Camacho said he received help from his parents, who gave him ideas of what to incorporate in his drawing.
When asked how he felt about his design being handed out to people to wear during Fiesta, Hernandez-Camacho responded, "It's cool!"
The runners up in the completion include second place - Corey Liker, third place - Gus Cunningham, fourth place - Axel Rivera. Cole High School students Johnathan Brooks, Samantha Costello, Jeremy Fuentes, Evan Garr, Kathleen Mahon, Alexandra Mazak, Julyette Prothero, Nariah Sablan, N'Dea Spivey, Mollie Starnes, and Juan Talamantes each received a certificate of achievement.
Over 1,200 medals were minted and will be presented by Army South leaders at events throughout San Antonio's and Fort Sam Houston's Fiesta celebrations. Fort Sam Houston celebrates Fiesta 2009 April 19.