The longest, and toughest, day of The Fall Exercise is over and I know everyone is feeling a mixture of exhaustion and pride at having completed the day, not to mention gratitude that we had beautiful weather.
The Fall Exercise actually got started yesterday, when our Founder spoke with the students about the history of the school’s namesake and of the Academy itself as well as the importance of the exercise. We are also very honoured to have BGen (ret) Jack Fox of the US Army with us this year. General Fox, the honourary Colonel of Robert Land Academy, spoke to the students yesterday about leadership drawing on his career with the New Mexico National Guard and as a teacher to inspire and educate our students. It was great to hear him speak.
This morning the entire Academy along with our guests from Royal Military College, New Mexico National Guard, Oak Ridge Military Academy, Paul Brown Leadership Academy and Massanutten Military Academy, started the exercise in Beamsville.
Those who can’t take part in the exercise have an important role in supporting the participants, handing out water and snacks at the various checkpoints throughout the day.
As always, it was inspiring to watch the students help each other and, although tired, persevere to finish the first day.
From here it gets easier, as tomorrow is a shorter day with fewer elevation changes, leading to Fort George where the students will spend the night before the final march to Queenston on Thursday.
As always, I’m proud of our students and what they have accomplished today.