U.S. Army/Spc. Kim Browne - Col. (promotable) Gary Volesky, deputy commander, 1st Cavalry Division, gives the initial oath of enlistment to future soldiers Sept. 9 at the Temple Mall.

By Spc. Kim Browne

1st Cavalry Division public affairs

TEMPLE - When someone enlists in the Army, there are many things they have to go through, ranging from a full physical examination to raising their right hand and reciting the oath of enlistment from an Army commissioned officer.

At a ceremony Sept. 9, at the Temple Mall, family and friends gathered around as Col. Gary Volesky, deputy commanding general, 1st Cavalry Division, as he gave a motivational speech to 19 future soldiers from the Temple Army Recruiting Station. He also gave them their initial oath of enlistment.

Staff Sgt. Jonathan Denney, of Las Cruces, N.M., and Staff Sgt. Heather Hathaway, of Wellsville, Pa., both recruiters at the Army Recruiting Station, Temple, said they were very fortunate that Volesky was willing to come out and support the future of today's Army.

The ceremony was arranged to motivate the future soldiers. It was also a means for family, friends and strangers to see firsthand the oath of enlistment into the Army.

"This was the first time I have got to give the oath to civilians and watch them become privates," said Volesky. "I was very honored."

During the ceremony, Volesky spoke about Army values, the differences between now and when he came into the Army, and what the Army stands for today.

"(Future soldiers) have to understand what our values are, understand what their responsibilities are, and understand that this organization they're coming into isn't like the organization I came into in 1984,' he said.

"All of our soldiers are smarter, we expect our soldiers to be better than we were in 1984 and I wanted to impress upon them the responsibility they have."

Volesky congratulated the future soldiers on their choice and welcomed them into the Army.

"Having Col. Volesky give us the Oath of Enlistment was one of the proudest moments of my life," said Keri Bailey, a future soldier and a high school senior.

Most of these future soldiers have their final year of high school to complete before "shipping off." Others only have a few months left as a civilian. They all have a couple of hurdles left before they can go to basic training.

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