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Army ROTC student soldier wins Louisiana award

September 20, 2013

Recognizing his hard work as a soldier-in-training, Loyola University New Orleans junior and Army ROTC cadet Zachary Leftwich recently received the Louisiana Chapter’s Order of Founders and Patriots of America Award. Leftwich, currently a private first class in the Louisiana National Guard, hopes to become an Army officer in the Military Police Corps.

Leftwich’s award recognizes military and aspiring military officers who hope to follow in the footsteps of their ancestors who fought for American freedom in perhaps its earliest days. The order, open to men who can trace their ancestry back to America’s first colonists who served in the American Revolution, claims members such as former U.S. presidents William Howard Taft and Warren G. Harding.

Leftwich, a criminal justice major at Loyola, may be following in his distant ancestors’ footsteps, but he looks to an even closer relative for inspiration.

“I have always wanted to join the Army ever since I can remember. My father has been in the Army for 35 years and is still going strong. He has been my inspiration for joining ROTC and enlisting in the Army,” Leftwich said.

Leftwich received the award during the Sept. 4 Orleans Battalion meeting, where more than 50 Army ROTC cadets from area universities completed the first Battalion three-mile run of the semester through Audubon Park. Loyola students who participate in Army ROTC take their courses on the Tulane University campus.

“My ROTC training will definitely help me in the future, because it prepares you for the difficulties you will experience both as an Army officer and as a civilian,” Leftwich said. “ROTC preaches the seven Army values: loyalty, duty, respect, selfless service, honor, integrity and personal courage. These seven values are a guide for every soldier to follow, and in my opinion, are what everyone should strive to follow.”

For more information about joining the Army ROTC program, please contact Major Michael Leiva at 504-862-3241.

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