Cadet Riley Trimble wins highest award in Navy Junior ROTC

Marks 5th year win for RHS NJROTC unit

By Jessica Vaughn
Education Editor
jessica@gulfcoastmedia.com
Posted 8/22/22

ELBERTA — Riley Trimble, Elberta High School student and Robertsdale High NJROTC cadet, knew something was up.Standing on the sidelines during the pre-game ceremonies leading up to the game …

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Cadet Riley Trimble wins highest award in Navy Junior ROTC

Marks 5th year win for RHS NJROTC unit

Posted

ELBERTA — Riley Trimble, Elberta High School student and Robertsdale High NJROTC cadet, knew something was up.

Standing on the sidelines during the pre-game ceremonies leading up to the game between the Elberta Warriors and Bayside Admirals on Friday night, Aug. 19, he spotted his parents on the field at the John T. Cobb Stadium.

They were supposed to be in Andalusia, Alabama.

"Commander (Frank) Starr (Robertsdale High School NJROTC) just asked me to be here tonight as Battalion Commander, just to show off," he said. "But then I saw my parents here and I thought, 'this is not right.'"

Details: Prior to the kickoff, Trimble was awarded the Legion of Valor Bronze Cross for Achievement Award, the highest award a Navy Junior ROTC cadet can earn. He is the fifth cadet in five consecutive years from the Robertsdale High School NJROTC program to receive this award, and the first from EHS.

The RHS program, comprised of students from RHS and EHS, is one of over 600 units nationwide. Across the country, there are roughly 78,000 NJROTC cadets.

Only 22 awards are presented annually. Of those 22, only two are awarded in Area 8, which includes the RHS unit.

"This is an honor," said Trimble. "It's something that you don't get very often. I mean, 22 cadets out of over 70,000? It's a lot, especially in Area 8. To have responsibility means a great deal to me because of what I do. I work on a farm when I'm not in school, so I'm full time there, and ROTC just comes second nature to me with responsibility and making sure people stay in line and get the job done."

Accomplishments: Leading up to the award, Trimble has obtained many accomplishments during his school career. These include:

  • GPA of 4.05 in a college preparatory curriculum
  • Ranked 20th in his academic class
  • Top of his NJROTC class
  • Graduate of NJROTC's Basic Leadership Training, and its premier leadership training – Leadership Academy
  • Battalion Commander responsible for the daily requirements of 160 cadets
  • Previously served as Company Commander
  • Served as Adjutant at last year's NJROTC inspection

"When one imagines the perfect NJROTC cadet, Cadet Trimble is what comes to mind," Starr said. "He always sets the example, and his uniform is absolutely beyond reproach. He is the first to volunteer for community service, accumulating nearly 100 hours in the past three years, and he is absolutely knowledgeable of all things NJROTC.

"Cadet Trimble is extremely dedicated to his unit. He does not merely accept responsibility; he seeks it out. He is driven in whatever endeavor he undertakes, and he is successful in all he does. He is an expert in finding the best cadet to accomplish the task while providing oversight as needed. He is a hardworking, humble leader who challenges his fellow cadets, his positive can-do attitude is infectious, and his resume is that of an outstanding cadet in an outstanding unit. Clearly, he has been instrumental in the success of his program."

Fun facts about Cadet Trimble

Future plans: "I'm trying to find a trade I want to do. I'm not sure I'm set on college, and Navy is a backup plan. I mostly want to do something in agriculture."

Cat person or dog person? "Dog."

Favorite music? "Country."

Favorite food? "Steak."

Favorite season? "Fall and winter because it's hunting season."

What do you do on an off day? "Normally work," Trimble concluded with a laugh.

More about the award: Each year, the Legion of Valor of the United States of America, Inc., an organization made up solely of recipients of the Medal of Honor, the Distinguished Service Cross, the Navy Cross and the Air Force Cross, presents the award to outstanding cadets. Recipients are selected based on achievements of excellence in military, scholastic and civil affairs, and to stimulate development of leadership.

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