Lions hear about West Point

Published 2:41 pm Monday, March 16, 2009

The importance of honor and integrity was the theme of a joint address last Wednesday to the Bainbridge Lions Club by Bainbridge High School Air Force Junior ROTC program director Col. Gary Breedlove and West Point Senior Cadet Jonathan Siskey.

Cadet Siskey, who is from Leesburg and a graduate of Deerfield Windsor Academy in Albany, is the grandson of Pete Sharber of Bainbridge,

Col. Breedlove, who is chairman of U.S. Rep. Sanford Bishop’s committee for the Air Force Academy, the U.S Military Academy at West Point, N.Y., and administrative liaison for the Air Force Academy and the U.S. Military Academy, opened the program by talking about the integrity of Siskey and other dedicated cadets like him.

Email newsletter signup

“Demands don’t always come when convenient,” Col. Breedlove said. “When I first interviewed Cadet Siskey, I could tell right away that he had very great character and a genuine interest in serving his country. West Point was also interested in him playing football for them.”

Cadet Siskey was a running back at Deerfield Windsor and played safety his freshman year at the academy. He is now a member of the academy’s skeet shooting team.

Cadet Siskey, who will graduate from the academy May 23 and report for infantry school at Fort Benning, began his remarks by describing his life at the academy as a great experience.

“Let me begin by talking about the U.S. Military Academy motto, which is ‘duty, honor, country,’” he said.

“Lets take honor first. They tell us, and I believe, that the academy is the premier leadership institution in the world. I want my superior officers to know that when I tell them something, they can depend on it. When I am leading troops in the future, I want them to know that when I tell them something, they can depend on it. If you don’t have honor and integrity, you don’t have anything.”

Cadet Siskey said, “As far as duty is concerned, we should not do more, but never do less. At West Point, our duty is to protect and defend our country.”

In directing his remarks on the West Point motto, Cadet Siskey said the country needs good men and women in its service.

“At the end of your sophomore year at the academy, you have to make a decision,” he said. “If you decide at that point that the military life is not for you, you can leave the academy and there will be no hard feelings. If you decide to stay, you take an oath of acclimation, which commits you to nine additional years in the Army.”