Former Harker Heights High School student Matthew Gallup is making a name for himself with the recognition he’s received in his final year at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point.
In March, he was awarded the Tomorrow’s Leader Award during Aviation Week in Washington, D.C.
“I was honored to receive the award,” he said. “There are many times that it seems academic success is not noticed as much at West Point, and it was nice to be recognized for the work that I have done over the past four years.”
Gallup was also named the 2013 Saint Andrew’s Society scholarship recipient, making him the first cadet to attend the University of Glasgow in Scotland. He plans to earn a master’s in aerospace systems and is set to enter the Army aviation branch as a helicopter pilot.
Gallup knew the direction he wanted to take in life from a very young age, he said. He was born close to West Point, in Mt. Kisco, N.Y., and recalls going on post as a child.
“That sparked my interest in West Point, which was fostered by the interactions I had with many of the West Pointers my dad worked with,” he said. “My experience at West Point has been interesting to say the least. There have been highs and lows, but overall it has been a good experience.”
Gallup’s father, Col. Roger Gallup, is the new commander of the Carl R. Darnall Army Medical Center at Fort Hood. He said his son has always been a well-rounded leader who takes care of people and does the right thing.
“I’m very proud of him,” he said. “He has done really great and I am looking forward to commissioning him as a second lieutenant at his graduation this May.”
Matthew Gallup was the salutatorian for the Harker Heights High School class of 2009. He was also an Eagle Scout and a member of the school swim team and National Honor Society.
Susan Gallup, Matthew’s mother, said the Army was always on her son’s career radar.
“For as long as I can remember, he always wanted to join the Army,” she said. “He’s always been a kid that does not accept failure, and part of his motivation was the fact that he has been part of a military community his whole life.”