With one national competition already out of the way this year, members of the Junior ROTC battalion of Leavenworth High School are focusing on the National High School Drill Team Championships scheduled for next month in Daytona Beach, Fla.
Retired Lt. Col. David Black, senior Army instructor for JROTC in Leavenworth, previously said he didn't know if local teams were "locked in" for this second national competition because of concerns about the potential loss of financial support from the Army.
The funding was pulled, but the JROTC program has received local donations to help pay for the trip. And the cadets who will be competing also are coming up with some of the money needed, Black said.
The students will be competing May 5 and 6.
The loss of financial support from the Army comes as the federal government is dealing with budget cuts resulting from what is known as sequestration, which went into effect last month.
Black credits retired Brig. Gen. Stan Cherrie, a local resident, with helping to raise the money for the trip.
"He's been pretty successful," Black said.
Black said donations have been received from organizations as well as individuals.
He said expenses for the trip include $9,600 for a bus to transport the students to Florida as well as $6,200 for hotel rooms.
He said students will be paying for the own food during the trip and may have to help cover the cost of hotel rooms. About 40 cadets in the program are looking to go to the competition in Florida.
Black said the JROTC battalion received support from the Army for their recent trip to U.S. Army Cadet Command JROTC Drill Championships in Louisville, Ky.
The Leavenworth JROTC battalion's Yellow Legs of Calvary, which is an honor guard with weapons, and the Yellow Ribbons of Calvary, an honor guard without weapons, competed at the event, which was held earlier this month.
Page 2 of 2 - Overall, the teams finished in the top 20 percent at the U.S. Army Cadet Command JROTC Drill Championships, Black said.
"I'm very proud of them," he said.
He said the local JROTC program also will be able to host its annual Raider meet April 27 at Leavenworth High School. That event doesn't require funding support from the Army.