FORT BRAGG, N.C. — On a spectacularly warm and sunny day, Corra Tendell, a cadet with the Air Force Junior Reserve Officers’ Training Corps at West Craven High School, took a leap of faith out of the 34-foot jump tower at the Advance Airborne School as part of the group’s tour, Feb. 22.
After her jump, she was embraced by her father, Charles Tendell who is retired and a former member of the 82nd Airborne Division.
“I’m at a loss for words at this point,” beamed Charles Tendell. “She’d be the third generation Tendell doing this. My father was a paratrooper, and I was a paratrooper. She’s out here doing this as part of a school project and maybe she ends up being a paratrooper.”
Corra Tendell was one of several cadets who got the opportunity to experience realistic training that is conducted by Fort Bragg Soldiers on a regular basis. When asked if this experience would help her decide if joining the armed services was a future option, Corra Tendell smiled.
“I honestly think this experience helped me,” said Corra Tendell. “It was one of the things I was concerned about, whether I would like it or not. Would it be a negative thing or a positive thing? The thrill you get from it, it’s going to make you want to do it again. So, I’d say yes.”
The West Craven High School AFJROTC visited Fort Bragg to give the cadets the opportunity to gain first-hand knowledge and experience a day in the life of a Soldier. It also introduced them to potential military careers and training opportunities. As part of this experience, cadets ate lunch at a military dining facility, toured the virtual weapons simulator and had an interactive experience at the flight simulators.
These tours not only give the cadets an opportunity to learn about military careers, but they also give Soldiers a chance to pass on knowledge and encourage future generations of Soldiers.
“This is like the cream of the crop,” said Sgt. 1st Class Andrea Munoz with 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division. “We have young aspiring Soldiers here and they are getting the full airborne experience so they can see if they want to become airborne. I’m excited to see them experience this and then come out the end getting to say, yes, we did it!”
JROTC groups can request tours through the garrison public affairs office at firstname.lastname@example.org.