Army Military Ball honors cadet achievement, fallen soldiers


Kennedy DeRaedt/Iowa State Daily

Junior Zachary Fuessley smiles at sophomore Lauren Arner at the Annual Cyclone Battalion Military Ball. The Annual Cyclone Battalion Military Ball was hosted by Cyclone Battalion Army ROTC in the Scheman Building on March 25. The Cyclone Battalion consists of Cadets from ISU, Drake, Buena Vista University and Grand View University. 

Emily Schroer

Once a year, the Cyclone Battalion gets together to celebrate the year it’s had by awarding outstanding cadets and raising money for future endeavors.

On Saturday evening, the Iowa State Army ROTC hosted a ball for Drake University, Grand View University, Buena Vista University and Iowa State University. The event helped raise money for trips throughout the year and gave family members a feel for what the ROTC program does.

The evening began with a presentation of the colors and an invocation. After the invocation, there was a tribute to all of the fallen soldiers by addressing the fallen soldier table. The table represented that even though the fallen soldiers were missing from the event, they are never very far from the minds of those who remember them.

“It brought tears to my eyes,” Myrna Grosskruger, mother of cadet Grant Grosskruger, said about the traditions. 

The next event was a punch bowl ceremony, where specific ingredients were added to the drink to represent past battles and campaigns.

Once the punch was distributed, the traditional toasts followed. With toasts to the county, president, Army, universities, fallen comrades and the women of the room, dinner was served.

“You see the sacrifice these students make on top of their class work, just to get through the program,” Grosskruger said.

After dinner, an auction helped raise money for future missions the Cyclone Battalion will go on next year. Most of the auction items were donated or sponsored, which resulted in $3,200 in profit.

The keynote speaker for the evening was Neal J. Ford, a retired lieutenant colonel in the U.S. Army. He spoke of what the true meaning of honor is.

“Honor means having respect for others, including yourself,” Ford said.

Ford said that honor means that people have to be worthy of respect for others and themselves. He also noted that honest people should never fear the truth from others.

Finally, he addressed how important it is to understand that choosing the military path gives a person’s life purpose. 

“Living life with purpose will motivate you to get up in the morning and give your life purpose,” Ford said.

The evening concluded with awards to outstanding cadets. Some included the George C. Marshall Award, Pallas Athene Award, the Superior Cadets, the Top Overall Cadet in Program, the LF Sheriff Brown Memorial Scholarship Award and the Society of War of 1812.

“The most important thing is just the honoring of the achievements both past and present,” Ben Rurup, brigade executive officer and cadet major, said.