The Evans High School JROTC cadets pushed their shoulders back and held their heads high as they took the field Thursday for the program's semiannual review.
The three companies and color guard of the program, under the direction of retired Lt. Col. Patrick Rivette and retired Sgt. 1st Class Sammie Stokes, paraded around the school football field and stood at attention for inspection.
"(They look) very good, very good," said retired Lt. Col. Phillip Calderwood, a reviewing stand guest who was a 26-year Army veteran and served as a nurse and medic in Vietnam and Operation Desert Storm.
Rivette said the cadets pull hats on straight and polish their shoes to show off at a review twice a year.
"In the fall, we usually do it to honor veterans," he said.
At the ceremony, military veterans joined Calderwood on the reviewing stand, and more than 20 Evans High graduates now serving the military were named, including Rivette's two sons, Capt. Daniel Rivette and Capt. Adam Rivette.
The three companies lined up at attention for "trooping the line," an inspection done by Rivette, Cadet Lt. Col. Matt Fleener and Michael Canady, the school system's director of student learning for vocational education. In the military, the formality offers commanders a chance to inspect the troops and gives the troops a chance to show respect to their commander.
"It is an actual ceremony as it is done in the Army," Rivette said.
The reviews let the cadets drill ceremony procedures. In the military, reviews are performed out of tradition more than necessity. The tradition, however, did grow from necessity.
"In the old days it was to prepare for battle," Rivette said.
Alexander the Great lined up his armies before battle to ensure everyone was well armed and prepared for the impending conflict, he said.
"It's been carried down through the centuries," he said.
Rivette said that before the Civil War's bloody Battle of Brandywine, "Jeb Stuart held a review of the cavalry, then took them into battle five minutes later."
The review tradition is still used in the military, mainly at special times such as when troops return from deployment.
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