Ohio National Guard honored during Ohio State football military appreciation game
Story by Staff Sgt. Michael L. Carden, Ohio National Guard Public Affairs
COLUMBUS, Ohio (11/13/19)
Members of the Ohio National Guard were honored at The Ohio State University’s annual military appreciation football game Nov. 9, 2019, at Ohio Stadium. Each year the university recognizes the service and sacrifices of U.S. service members on the game played around the Veterans Day weekend.
More than 50 Soldiers and Airmen, representing the more than 16,000 members of the Ohio National Guard, were recognized on the field before the start of the game, receiving a standing ovation from over 100,000 fans in attendance.
“It was great being in the ‘Horseshoe’ with the amazing support from all the fans,” said Tech Sgt. Jordan Hopson, with the 178th Wing in Springfield, Ohio. “It was one of the coolest feelings I’ve ever had in my life.”
The festivities didn’t end there. Sgt. Whitney Schalk, the Ohio Army National Guard Noncommissioned Officer of the Year, carried the American flag as she led the Buckeyes out onto the field before the game.
The excitement from the community kept increasing, as the No. 1-ranked Buckeyes resoundingly defeated the Maryland Terrapins by a score of 73-14.
During the third quarter, Maj. Gen. John C. Harris Jr., Ohio adjutant general, administered the oath of enlistment to a group of new Soldiers and Airmen on the field, an experience most in the crowd had never had a chance to see and a memorable start to those new service members' careers.
“It was exciting to have all those people cheering for you,” said Jordan Ramsey, a Soldier freshly sworn in on the field. “I joined the military to serve my country and my community, and all that support means everything.”
Walking through the crowds, Soldiers and Airmen were stopped by fans wanting to wish them well and thank them for their service.
“It’s phenomenal, the support from the fans is just so rewarding,” said Tech. Sgt. Thomas Bonte, with the 121st Air Refueling Wing. “They just want to say thank you. Getting to be out here in the community and getting to represent the Ohio National Guard is a great feeling.”