ROCKINGHAM — Soldiers from the North Carolina Army National Guard’s 881st Engineers worked with the Richmond Senior High Junior ROTC Raider Battalion Saturday to build an apparatus that will improve fitness for years to come on the campus of Richmond Senior High.
The Senior Army Instructor for the Raider Battalion, retired Lt. Col. Jon A. Ring, explained the need for this new apparatus.
“Physical fitness is one of the main pillars of the JROTC program, and being able to pull one’s own body up over a bar — or at least hold up for a period of time — is an indicator of core body strength,” he said. “These new pull-up bars will be loved by cadets for years to come.”
The day began by laying out the plan for the x-shaped bars in order to determine where to sink the 6×6 posts. Once laid out, the combined team began digging.
“We were hoping for some of the engineers’ heavy equipment to assist in digging the holes, but used the pick-axes, shovels and post hole diggers that we had,” Ring said. “We decided to designate the day as ‘Power Tool Appreciation Day’ as we were having fun conversation doing our work.”
After getting the holes dug, the posts were dropped into place. Some adjustments were made and the bars were leveled and secured in place. Everyone assisted where necessary to complete the project to the highest standard.
Upon completion of the project, Cadet Command Sgt. Maj. Donald Watson was the first to christen the pull-up bars during the ensuing pull-up contest. He ‘set the bar high’ with 18 pull-ups to start the competition. Everyone else took their opportunity to hang and pull and all had respectable results.
This was the first of what is expected to be many future collaborative projects between the two outfits.