Students describe their pride as members of the Color Guard

The Magnet Tribune: courtesy of Dante Reyes
Sophia Ayala stands at attention while holding the flag at an event.

Maddie Dion, staff writer

Being in JROTC Color Guard brings a lot of responsibility. For example, students give up their time to practice and go to football games or school programs.

J.W Nixon High School Color Guard members explained what it’s like presenting colors.

“Personally, it’s an amazing and honorable feeling. When you’re standing in front of a crowd and the National Anthem it gives a sense of patriotism that you can’t get anywhere else. Additionally holding the flags makes you feel like you’re invincible, given many have died for those flags,” junior Dante Reyes said.

I just look forward and let the colors fly with pride in my country.”

— Dante Reyes

“The presenting of colors is the most wonderful feeling I have ever felt. There’s a certain feeling I get from knowing I can present the flags which means all the blood loss and all the people who have worked to make our country the country it is today,” junior Sophia Ayala added. “Every time I’m up there I’m full of pride and honor and an amazing feeling from being able to say I present the colors. Honor, pride, and respect fills my heart and my mind fills with all the thoughts of the people who have served to keep us safe and how much it means to them for someone to present their colors while others just take advantage without thinking it’s a big deal when in reality, one man’s trash is another man’s treasure.”

The Color Guard members explained how they chose to be in the group.

“It was a choice out of my free will. I had seen a Color Guard team perform and from there I knew I wanted to be on the team,” Reyes said.

“I actually didn’t choose to, I didn’t even want to, but sergeant major forced me into it because they were missing one girl for female Color Guard, and well, I was the chosen one,” Ayala said.

Color Guard members explained how they felt before going out and present the colors.

“It was a nervous feeling at first but when I finally took those steps onto wherever I need to go, I just look forward and let the colors fly with pride in my country,” Reyes said.

“Nervous, really nervous! My blood gets hot and I start sweating, I have a sudden urge to use the bathroom. LOL. I also go over the commands so they come out perfect, but right when I’m about to go on I feel confident and amazing and just happy,” Ayala added.

What is Reyes’s favorite part about being in Color Guard?

“Being a flag bearer and getting ready right before stepping out onto the field,” Reyes answered.

Everyone has a different role in color guard, either it being to walk with the flag or to protect the flags. Each role is important, so what is Reyes’s role in Color Guard?

“Initially I was the U.S. guard. As the title suggests, I guarded the U.S. flag. After two years on the team I became the Color Guard commander and now I’m the U.S flag bearer,” Reyes said.

While in Color Guard and in JROTC members have to have a lot of pride to wear the uniform and they have to be dedicated to the teams no matter what, and this drives people away and for people to stay is a big commitment. Reyes was asked what made him stay in Color Guard.

“The sense of patriotism,” Reyes said.

Reyes explained what he would say to someone who wanted to join or try out for Color Guard but is scared.

“Gain confidence and do not be scared. The honor that comes with the role is beyond any civilian function,” Reyes said.

Reyes explained how Color Guard is rewarding to him.

“Personally, just the simple bearing of colors is rewarding. Just the privilege to do it is amazing,” Reyes said.

Out of anything Reyes could change about Color Guard he said he would only change two things.

“Maybe a new change of equipment and regulations, but not really. I wouldn’t,” Reyes said.